1981: One year before her death, famous actress Romy Schneider retreats to a spa hotel in the town of Quiberon, Brittany. Visited by her close friend Hilde, who has come to offer the support she needs to fight her own demons. But it is more than just the reunion of two old friends. When two journalists from the STERN arrive to conduct an interview, Hilde tries to shield her friend from their invasive interrogation tactics. For three days and nights, the interaction between the quartet ranges from sensitivity to brutal manipulation, an emotional roller coaster ride, by the end of which Romy seems more vulnerable than ever. Yet perhaps she has rediscovered her zest for life and the inner strength to carry on.Written by
Beta Film GmbH
It should be pointed out that neither Sara Biasini ,Romy Schneider's daughter ,nor her ex-husband approved of this movie ,which they accused of giving the audience the portrait of a woman hooked to alcohol and pills.
So one has to consider this movie ONE vision of Romy Schneider 's last days (she was to die the following year);and Marie Bäumer's performance is absolutely mind-boggling,stunning,an amazing true-to-life portrait .And anyway ,the film does not spare the reporter,an intruder in a woman's private life ,his sole concern is to dwell on sordid details :the only movies he mentions are the Sissi trilogy : no hints at Welles, Tavernier,Sautet, Losey ,Costa-Gavras, Visconti (with whom she played Sissi for the fourth time : in her memoirs she wrote that the Italian director was the only one to paint a historically accurate picture of Elisabeth aka Sissi),Deray (who ,pushed by Alain Delon ,recharged her career) ; the journalist , a German one ,is a cynical go-getter whose main concern is to get scandalous stories about a
suffering star .If another movie is mooted , it is by Schneider herself who talks about what would be her final movie "LA PASSANTE DU SANS SOUCI" from Joseph Kessel 's novel , a work she was anxious to get made (by Jacques Rouffio) .She complains that German directors (and the seventies spawned a whole generation of great directors in that country)never called on her for interesting parts ,thus a career which essentially took place in France where she was one of the biggest stars of those years .But her interviewer is only interested in his nice empress, the money she makes (which was squandered by her mother and her stepfather) ,and the relationship with her mother (who played her mother in the Marischka trilogy and who was a supporting actress is some other of her movies of the fifties) ; her moving to France ("not an escape" ,she points out)was necessary to live her life at last .
The second part of the movie is not really given over to her career ,but shows her sincere friendships (the friend who comes to cheer her ,the photographer in love with her), her kindness (the autograph) ,her joie de vivre which survived through the pain (the last scene will move you to tears,a fabulous rainbow:unfortunately there won't be any crock of gold at the end of it).
Filmed in stark black and white , half documentary,half fiction ,it's not a facile work ,it is nevertheless a must for the actress's numerous fans,in spite of her daughter's legitimate reserves.
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