From beyond the grave, celebrated playwright Antoine d'Anthac gathers together all his friends who have appeared over the years in his play "Eurydice." These actors watch a recording of the... See full summary »
In Yorkshire, Toby Teasdale is the alcoholic director of a school and married with two children with Celia Teasdale that is very unhappy. They have a maid, Sylvie Bell, and a guardian and ... See full summary »
Odile is looking for a new, bigger apartment. Her younger sister Camille just completed her doctoral thesis has fallen in love with an estate agent who is responsible for Odile's apartment ... See full summary »
A musical drawing room farce set in Paris in October, 1925. Gilberte, in middle-age, flirts with men but loves her husband Georges, wishing he were more demonstrative. He's negotiating a ... See full summary »
In Paris in the 1920s, a concert violinist meets and falls in love with a stylish young flapper who's the wife of an old friend. Romaine instigates the affair with Marcel, and carries it ... See full summary »
The intersecting stories of three people who face difficult choices in life-changing situations are used to illustrate the theories espoused by Henri Laborit about human behavior and the relationship between the self and society.
Elisabeth and Simon have been deeply in love for two months when Simon momentarily dies, but comes back to life. Simon does not want any further medical tests, but the couple are forced to ... See full summary »
Three intertwined tales. On the eve of the First World War, Count Forbek starts to build a fantastic castle in the Ardennes forest. After the war he uses it to start a utopian society by ... See full summary »
Diego is one of the chief of the spanish Communist Party. He is travelling back to Paris (where he lives) from a mission in Madrid. He is arrested at the border for an identity check but ... See full summary »
A wallet lost and found opens the door to romantic adventure for Georges and Marguerite. After examining the ID papers of its owner, it is not a simple matter for Georges to turn the red wallet he found in to the police. Nor is it that Marguerite can recuperate her wallet without being piqued with curiosity about whom it was who found it. As they navigate the social protocols of giving and acknowledging thanks, turbulence enters their otherwise quotidian lives.Written by
The aircraft Marguerite was flying at the aerodrome was a Gardan GY-80-180 Horizon.' See more »
The credits show considerable variation in their presentation. The first credits seen are the individual actor names with the name of the character played, in a serif font, with shadowed letters. These credits are moving left to right across the screen, fading in and out at different points, over a background of the film's name in larger letters, in an italicized serf font. After the first ten actors, there is abrupt change to a sans serif font, again with shadowed text, for both the cast/ characters list and the film title. The film title is now angled up to the right and is not in clear focus. After the names of the cast, the credits start as scrolling white text on a black background using a serif font, then there is a change to a sans serif font and then a return to the serif font. The next change is to black text on a grey background using a serif font. This then reverts to white text on a black background with a serif font, then a change to a sans serif font and then a return to the serif font. These credits do not stay in a central position, but move from side to side on the screen. See more »
'Mama, when I become a cat, will I be able to eat cat munchies?'
The great master of the French cinema, Alain Resnais, has produced this bizarre, brilliantly made and intensely surrealist 'crazy masterpiece'. It is based upon a novel entitled 'l'Incident' ('The Incident') with which I am unfamiliar, so it is difficult to know how much of this film originated from the febrile brain of Resnais himself. The story and its treatment carry on the long-standing French traditions of two literary movements: surrealism and 'unanisme'. The surrealist input is immediately obvious, because the story itself, although realistically portrayed, is inherently entirely surrealist. It begins with an 'incident', namely the theft of a purse from a woman who has been shopping in the Palais Royale in Paris. For several minutes we do not even see her face, but only the back of her head, and her face only appears for the first time floating in a bath. It was André Breton's famous surrealist novel 'Nadja' which focused the minds of the entire French intelligentsia upon the importance of chance events which lead to chains of further complications and create a whole alternative future to that which might have been. (Kieslowski and other film directors have exploited this motif in numerous films.) This story commences in just such a way. And then further chance events ensue, such as the man finding the stolen purse and becoming obsessed with the woman who owned it, especially because she has a pilot's licence in the purse and he is obsessed by airplanes and female solo pilots. The influence of 'unanisme' on this story is shown by the intense portrayals of only tiny portions of the backgrounds, stories, and motives of the characters, with the emphasis being given to them acting as a group, and we the viewers being left to imagine the rest. In other words, exposition is below the minimum, and we never do learn what is wrong with all these crazy people, and it is their interrelations which dominate. These techniques were above all pioneered and demonstrated by the French novelist Jules Romains, who founded the literary movement known as 'unanisme'. Having read 27 novels by Romains, I have more than a passing familiarity with his work. It has been more influential than people tend to realize. It must be kept firmly in mind that this Resnais film contains a great deal of gnomic humour and sly jokes. It is not meant to be taken any more seriously than life itself. Some of the references are incomprehensible, as they are doubtless meant to be: why do we keep seeing the camera moving over swaying wild grass in a field? Why do we see so many pavement cracks with tufts of wild grass growing out of them? We shall never know. Many of the shots, editing, compositions, angles, and moods are so outstanding that we can see clearly that Resnais has lost none of his genius in his long career. As always, much in this film is never meant to be explained, but is only suggested, and we can make of it what we will. All of the leading characters are eventually shown to be seriously mentally unbalanced, and I take this as Resnais's view of humanity generally. And who can say he is wrong? There is a lot to be said for the theory that everybody is insane. That would then explain everything about the world. In fact, the only sane person in this film seems to be the little girl who asks about the cat munchies. And we do not even know who she is. This film is funny, sad, shocking, upsetting, provocative, thoughtful, disturbing, incomprehensible, deeply meaningful, irrational, profound, and many other things besides, but why use up all the adjectives when there is a compulsively fascinating movie to watch instead.
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