Gérard (26 year-old G.Depardieu in a star-making, César-nominated performance) is the he-man single father of a little baby boy who meets carefree, sensuous Valérie (ravishingly beautiful 21 year-old Ornella Muti). They feel instantly attracted to each other, she moves in with him on the spot, they fall in love, she fancies playing stepmother to the baby, he gets jealous, she wants freedom, he gets enraged, she no longer fancies constant love-making, he gets desperate, they quarrel and fight, and things disintegrate until the totally shocking finale knocks you OUT!
This film was banned mostly everywhere outside Europe, including the US – and you won’t find it in VHS or DVD for sale on Amazon, or for rent in your local store. This version is a German-dubbed one from “Arte” TV channel, English subs are included in the archive.
Set in Marseilles, this coming-of-age tale centers on a Lolita-esque teen who is a big tease to a shy Arab kid. Lila is a gorgeous 16-year-old girl who has just moved, with her rather strange aunt, into a poor neighborhood populated primarily by Arab families. The two leaders of the suburb’s main gang fall in love with her. One is the film’s poetic narrator, a quiet boy with a talent for writing named Chimo; the other is Mouloud, a headstrong punk. One day, Lila dares Chimo to look up her skirt — if he can handle it — and by doing so, puts into motion a sequence of raw, devastating events. The ensuing maelstrom that develops out of this romantic triangle reveals the dangers inherent in sexual game playing.
Glitterbug consists of film strips shot by Jarman with his Super-8 between 1971 and 1986, a format he was constantly experimenting with and made use of in the film collage In the Shadow of the Sun (1981) for example, it is an endless montage of loosely connected Super-8 sequences put together alternatively into an impressionistic shimmer of beauty, alternatively with an aggressive, rhetorical edge. The Last of England (1987), similar in a technical way, became even more famous. It was a devastating criticism of Thatcherism and of what Jarman per-ceived to be the decline of Britain. Jarman’s most distinct feature was his constant role as a man against the tide his attacks against anything considered to be part of the Establishment, whether it concerned sexual preferences or political power structures. The boldness re-appears in Glitterbug, where images from Jarman’s own everyday life in London in the early 70’s, with rooms filled with anti-cultural fetishes from the Swinging London era, are mixed with various documentaries from the making of some of Jarman’s notorious successes: the gay film Sebastiane (1975) and the punk protest Jubilee (1977). Continue reading
Sandra, a young Belgian mother, discovers that her workmates have opted for a significant pay bonus, in exchange for her dismissal. She has only one weekend to convince her colleagues to give up their bonuses so that she can keep her job.
The Weiss family is the archetypical Hollywood dynasty: father Stafford is an analyst and coach, who has made a fortune with his self-help manuals; mother Cristina mostly looks after the career of their son Benjie, 13, a child star. One of Stafford’s clients, Havana, is an actress who dreams of shooting a remake of the movie that made her mother, Clarice, a star in the 60s. Clarice is dead now and visions of her come to haunt Havana at night… Adding to the toxic mix, Benjie has just come off a rehab program he joined when he was 9 and his sister, Agatha, has recently been released from a sanatorium where she was treated for criminal pyromania and befriended a limo driver Jerome who is also an aspiring actor.
Bertrand Bonello’s highly stylized look at the final days of a fin-de-siècle brothel in Paris conjures up the languid beauty and frank sexuality of French Romantic painting. Its visual sumptuousness lands somewhere between Ingres and Renoir but with stylistic provocations worthy of a time-travelling Baudelaire.
In the nineteenth century, much of the Parisian sex trade was confined to grands maisons, populated by elegant madams and a vetted clientele. They were akin to social clubs, with the gentleman participants expected to be as charming and witty as they might be in more respectable drawing rooms. The ladies were provocatively dressed and, upstairs, occupied numerous boudoirs ready for carnal pleasures. Even in such a controlled environment, dangers still lurked: disease was rampant and lethal, and sometimes even a gentleman might lose his temper and harm one of the women. Continue reading
After a five-year hiatus from filmmaking, Piotr Szulkin returned in 1990 with “Femina”, based on a novel by Krystyna Kofta and inspired by Luis Bunuel.
The main character is Bogna, a thirty year old woman lost in her surrounding reality and unhappy in her private life. After her husband departs for a foreign scholarship, Bogna learns that her mother died. The trip to her hometown for the funeral becomes a voyage in time, during which she relives the memories of her idyllic childhood. Continue reading