At a weekend gathering, a man tries to convince a woman that they had met there and spent some time together the previous year. The woman has no recollection whatsoever of having met this man and is convinced that he is just making all of this up. The more the man talks about their activities the previous year however, the more convincing he becomes. The question remains however - did they meet previously or not?Written by
Finnish certificate # 62949 delivered on 5-10-1962. See more »
Exterior night scenes were shot day-for-night, but the sky and reflections of it were allowed in the frame, and they appear as bright white instead of black. This may have been intentional to emphasize the surreality of the film. See more »
[X wanders through the hotel's corridors cataloging items he sees]
Empty salons. Corridors. Salons. Doors. Doors. Salons. Empty chairs, deep armchairs, thick carpets. Heavy hangings. Stairs, steps. Steps, one after the other. Glass objects, objects still intact, empty glasses. A glass that falls, three, two, one, zero. Glass partition, letters.
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A mystery, a love story, and a haunting exploration of memory
Scenes at a European spa unfold while a man's mind tries to recollect a love affair of the past season. In one of the most deeply psychological films I have seen, memory itself seems to be the protagonist -- or is it the villain? What plot there is simply provides the material for a meditation on the uncertainty of knowing. The accomplishment of _Last Year at Marienbad_ is to make this point convincingly even in the case of that which one would not expect a man to have difficulty remembering: a sexual involvement and loss. It does so by a hypnotic combination of wheeling, dreamlike images of the resort's architecture and grounds, together with the incantatory, obsessive, recurrent tone of the narrative voice over. In doing this it also transforms a place where people go to be waited on and to play, into a labyrinth haunted by unsmiling shades, where remembering is both impossible and necessary.
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