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Total Eclipse (1995)

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Young, wild poet Arthur Rimbaud and his mentor Paul Verlaine engage in a fierce, forbidden romance while feeling the effects of a hellish artistic lifestyle.

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1 nomination. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
... Arthur Rimbaud
... Paul Verlaine
... Mathilde Maute
... Isabelle Rimbaud
Félicie Pasotti ... Isabelle, as a child (as Felicie Pasotti Cabarbaye)
Nita Klein ... Rimbaud's Mother
James Thierrée ... Frederic (as James Thiérrée)
Emmanuelle Oppo ... Vitalie
Denise Chalem ... Mrs. Maute De Fleurville
... Mr. Maute De Fleurville
Christopher Thompson ... Carjat
... Aicard
... Charles Cros
... The Judge
Mathias Jung ... Andre
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Storyline

In 1871, Paul Verlaine (1844-1896), an established poet, invites boy genius Arthur Rimbaud (1854-1891) to live with Paul and his young pregnant wife, Mathiltde, in her father's home in Paris. Rimbaud's uncouth behavior disrupts the household as well as the insular society of French poets, but Verlaine finds the youth invigorating. Stewed in absinthe and resentment, Verlaine abuses Mathiltde; he and Rimbaud become lovers and abandon her. There are reconciliations and partings with Mathiltde and partings and reconciliations with Rimbaud, until an 1873 incident with a pistol sends one of them to prison. Codas dramatize the poets' final meeting and last illnesses. Written by <jhailey@hotmail.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Impassioned by genius. Inflamed by desire. Imprisoned by love. See more »


Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for strong sexuality and nudity, language, and some startling violence | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Official Sites:

Fine Line Features

Country:

| |

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Release Date:

3 November 1995 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

El fuego y la sombra  »

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Box Office

Budget:

$8,000,000 (estimated)

Gross USA:

$339,889
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

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Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Ouzo was used as a replacement for absinthe for the drinking scenes filmed on the first day. Because the scene turned out so well, method drinking was adopted for the rest of filming. As a result, Thewlis had admitted in a interview that he can't really remember making the film at all. See more »

Goofs

In the Café Andre where the adult Isabelle Rimbaud meets with Paul Verlaine, the typeface on the window is clearly in Helvetica, a typeface that was not created until 1954. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Paul Verlaine: Sometimes he speaks in a kind of tender dialect of the death which causes repentence, of the unhappy men who certainly exist, of painful tasks and heartrending departures. In the hovels where we got drunk he wept looking at those who surrounded us, the cattle of poverty. He lifted up drunks in the black streets. He had the pity a bad mother has for small children. He moved with the grace of a little girl at catechism. He pretended to know about everything, business, art, medicine. ...
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Connections

Referenced in Entourage: The Scene (2004) See more »

Soundtracks

Arrival
Composed by Hank Deckon and Jan A.P. Kaczmarek
Performed by Warsaw Symphony Orchestra and Wilanow String Quartet
Conductor [Warsaw Symphony] Krzesimir Debski
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User Reviews

Painful but worthy film
20 August 2000 | by See all my reviews

This art-house film is not a crowd-pleaser but is nevertheless an excellent film. It is one of DiCaprio's best independent films before he became a titanic superstar.

Rimbaud"s painfully self-destructive bisexual life and his affair with Verlaine is not a "nice" story to tell, but the drama is interesting as a study in the eccentric mind of the artist. Beneath the plot is the age-old question of whether the artist's oddness hinders his creativity or is actually the fuel for his art.


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