A 4-year-old child is the element from and around which the action develops, and brings sentiments and emotions to light. The French word révélateur" describes the prodedure to develop or "reveal" film negatives.
Middle-aged artistes provide the focus of this drama filmed in black and white. The story is set in Paris around the time of the Gulf War. Paul is an actor leading a drab directionless ... See full summary »
Johanna ter Steege
Hélène is unhappy with her marriage but finds some comfort and relief with Paul, a young art student. They reflect on their differences of age, backgrounds and also what truly connects them... See full summary »
Four chapters based on the birth of a 'secret child', or a film, with chapter titles: "La séction Césarienne" (Caesarian section: a descriptive detail introducing the mother); "Le dernier ... See full summary »
Henri de Maublanc,
As a man leaves his wife and daughter, a series of brief conversations, observed gestures, chance encounters and impulsive acts, tell the story of the relationships that flounder and thrive in the wake of this decision.
What this movie is, depends to a larger extent than usual on you the viewer. Garrel films Jean Seberg, Nico (in a relationships with Garrel at the time), Tina Aumont and Laurent Terzieff in Seberg's apartment, there is no sound recording or soundtrack. It's a silent movie consisting mainly of closeups of their faces. To me it was like visual Bach, I thought of his Goldberg Variations mostly. A large proportion of the film is Seberg, which I preferred as she was being the most intimate. Tina Aumont seems like an extravert in the Jungian sense, like she ceases to exist to an extent when others aren't around, and Nico seemed very distant in her few scenes. There was a certain amount of vanity on display, but also Seberg looks into the camera like she really wants to connect. She can laugh with just her eyes. There's a Zanzibar film called Deux Fois by Jackie Raynal where Raynal plays this sort of trick with editing where she shines a mirror at the camera and then disappears, and it appears like she is trying to make the same sort of connection that a magician makes with their audience. I had a similar feeling watching Seberg in Les Hautes Solitudes. Garrel incidentally was part of the Zanzibar group, although this film is post-Zanzibar.
Probably the iconic shot from Les Hautes Solitudes is the side of Seberg's face reflected against a polished surface, filmmakers love their mirrors. I wondered if this was some sort of comment about being an actor, that is having difficulty separating your roles from who you are, certainly I once saw a film where some people were being taught acting and a lot of it was about personal deconstruction, which must be as tremendously psychologically damaging as it is professionally rewarding. The reflection in the polished surface looks like the "silver screen".
Some people get Murnau or Dreyer type feelings when they watch this, i.e. as if they are watching classical drama as opposed to a type of documentary (Nosferatu or Vampyr). I just saw a woman to some extent lost, to some extent searching, and also thinking about the past. Her pain at some points seemed very raw and I wanted to comfort her. I thought a bit since about Garbo in Camille, and how nuanced and beautiful that role was, and the pain of her character there. It's rare that I ever see a film and think about how great it would be to meet the actor, but Garbo in Camille was one time it happened and here is another.
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