Eugène Green – Le pont des Arts AKA The Bridge of Art (2004)

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Quote:
In the rarefied stratosphere of Eugene Green’s film “Le Pont des Arts,” music, literature, philosophy and aesthetics, and the characters’ engagement with them, are literally matters of life and death. Here and in his other films, Mr. Green, the American-born French filmmaker who founded the Theatre de la Sapience, a group dedicated to revitalizing 17th-century Baroque theater in modern productions, has invented a cinematic vocabulary that radically juxtaposes classical and contemporary themes and characters. … In “Le Pont des Arts,” Mr. Green’s propensity for throwing in academically heavyweight references and concepts may seem intimidating, but it is more than an exercise in name-dropping. The movie is an audacious, mythically slanted inquiry into the place of high art in today’s chaotic culture and an assertion of its primacy. … — NYTimes Continue reading

Eugène Green – A Religiosa Portuguesa AKA The Portuguese Nun (2009)

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Quote:
Filmmaker Eugene Green pays homage to Manoel de Oliveira, a Portuguese director whose had a profound influence on his style, with this drama of a woman eager for a new lease on life. Julie (Leonor Baldaque) is a French actress who is still nursing a broken heart after a bad breakup with her boyfriend. Julie travels to Lisbon to begin work on her latest project, in which she’ll play the title role in a screen adaptation of the novel Letters of a Portuguese Nun. Julie is fascinated with Lisbon, and spends much of her spare time exploring the city, and she opens herself up to encounters with a wealthy and prominent man (Diogo Dória) as well as one of her fellow actors (Adrien Michaux). However, Julie learns the most about herself and her heart when she strikes up a friendship with a local boy who has lost his parents (Francisco Mozos), enjoys some long conversations with a nun (Ana Moreira) who is advising the production, and learns to love Portugal’s native fado music. A Religiosa Portuguesa (aka The Portuguese Nun) was an official selection at the 2009 BFI London Film Festival. ~ Mark Deming, Rovi Continue reading

Eugène Green – La Sapienza (2014)

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Synopsis:
Named for the famous seventeenth-century Roman church Sant’Ivo alla Sapienza, which was designed by the legendary architect (and Bernini rival) Francesco Borromini, LA SAPIENZA echoes Rossellini’s Viaggio in Italia in its tale of Alexandre Schmid (Fabrizio Rongione), a brilliant architect who, plagued by doubts and loss of inspiration, embarks on a quest of artistic and spiritual renewal guided by his study of Borromini. His wife Aliénor (Christelle Prot), similarly troubled by the crassness of contemporary society – as well as the couple’s lack of communication and passion – decides to accompany him. In Stresa, a chance encounter with adolescent siblings Goffredo (who is about to commence his own architectural studies) and his fragile sister Lavinia upends the couple’s plans. As Borromini’s spirit and the vertiginous splendour of his structures spin a mysterious web among them, within the course of a few days the foursome experiences a series of life-altering revelations. Continue reading