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Clément, a young philosophy teacher from Paris is sent to Arras for a year. He meets Jennifer, a pretty hair-stylist, who becomes his lover. They're free in their hearts and bodies and could share this perfect love if the cultural and social divide were not as deep.Written by
I caught this by accident on France 3 and to my knowledge it has not been released in England. A great pity when we still can see or buy Rohmer, and the amount of intelligent dialogue reminded me a lot of that director. I do not know the director of this film, but judging by what I saw he is a very good director indeed. No music except when needed, and I trusted his judgement on that. Above all else he peeled away other characters to the two main characters played by two superb actors, Emilie Duguenne and Loic Corbery. I did not know their names and have seen them in no other films. Quite a revelation,
and bizarrely for a hetero normative scenario the last song was sung with force like a Gay anthem. The film on Judy Garland with its similar defiant ending failed in comparison. Also I found it sad that Loic Corbery has not made other films. French cinema needs a man of good looks, intelligence and presence. He should be working for many other fine directors, and alas for most audiences theatre work does not travel.
The film did not sadden me. These two, however much they battle with the eternal problem of love are not compatible. He is of the mind; she is of the natural force of living, hence the last song. It is not a sexist film and it shows two equals, but equal in their own ways, but not together. Towards the end they are watching each other all the time with a nervous, but all the same a kind of love and eye movement alone between them shows that it cannot last, but the final scene shows how both will suffer and eventually move on. Emilie Duquenne shows clearly that she knows herself and that there will be no total breakdown for her. As for Loic Corbery I sense a closing in and possibly a drying up inside in the future. His unspoken pain was beautifully conveyed. What we call love has baffled civilization for a long time and films on it are not clichés but a portrayal of what love can be and what it is not, or if sadly it is an illusion that we all need. A philosophical question indeed.
A final mystery. Why shown in so few cinemas ? That does sadden me.
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