In occupied Paris, an actress married to a Jewish theater owner must keep him hidden from the Nazis while doing both of their jobs.In occupied Paris, an actress married to a Jewish theater owner must keep him hidden from the Nazis while doing both of their jobs.In occupied Paris, an actress married to a Jewish theater owner must keep him hidden from the Nazis while doing both of their jobs.
First of all - the actors. Catherine Deneuve is really great here and plus her role is very challenging because as Bernard says there are two women hiding inside Marion. At times she is so gentle and loving, especially towards her husband Lucas, and sometimes she's really arrogant and cold. In general her Marion is a very confused and stressed and in love at the same time, which makes her very her very hard to play but i think Catherine Deneuve did a magnificent job. The same can be said about Heinz Bennent in the role of Lucas but i don't think Depardieu is on the same level although there are several scenes where he's really great (at the rehearsal of the shouting scene and in the nightclub). At the same time i don't think it's his fault. I think that he actually has too little screen time and his character is not so fully developed.
The cinematography is great and the script too although i have some criticism (or maybe i just misunderstood some points). First of all i didn't understand how does Lucas realise that Marion is in love with Bernard. OK she kisses him after the premiere but even i didn't realise it was this kind of kiss and Lucas doesn't even see it 'cause he's in the basement. And there's one scene where she asks Bernard to sit next to her but Lucas is not there too. So how does he know? Am i missing something because it's not just a small detail, it's a major point. Nevermind, the film still has more meaning then a great deal of American nonsense.
And what i liked about it the most is the overall "in the time of war" atmosphere. During the whole film we can feel the tension, we can hear the radio broadcasts, we can see how the people are forced to hide whenever they hear the alarm and the electricity often goes out. Truffaut makes sure that whenever we start to feel safe, watching the rehearsals and observing the relationships inside the theater, something interrupts the relatively calm existence and reminds us that there's war outside. His direction is superb here as it was in "La peau Douce" - the other film i saw made by him. I of course i know these are not even among his best. But i can't really know that. All i know is that this film is really great and i enjoyed it very much.
- Aug 5, 2006