Georges Menessier, a 45-year-old celebrity press writer, smuggles into a mental hospital to take pictures of…his ex-wife Clara Noël, once a great film star now confined to this clinic for alcoholism and nervous trouble. Once inside the place he meets Clo, a beautiful twenty-year-old woman, another inmate. They fall in love but madness is synonymous with tragedy not happiness…Read More »
“No film is so enchanting but ultimately tragic as Le Grand Meaulnes, based on the classic novel of the same title written by Alain-Fournier, his only novel published the year after he was killed in the first World War.
I’ll need to start with the novel since it is so fundamental to the film. Whoever read it in their youth can never forget it. It influenced Jack Kerouac, and thus became the only book that Sal Paradise carried with him in On the Road. Author John Fowles considered it “the greatest novel of adolescence in European literature.” In the U.S, it is usually translated as The Wanderer, a fitting title.Read More »
The story follows the decadent heir Henri de Marsay, who becomes enamored of the eponymous beauty, Paquita Valdes, and plots to seduce her. He succeeds but becomes disillusioned when he discovers she is also involved with another lover and so plots to murder her. When he arrives to kill her, he discovers that she is already dead by the hand of her lover, his half-sister. She declares that Paquita came from a land where women are no more than chattels, able to be bought and used in any way. In the last lines of the story, de Marsay tells a friend that the girl has died of “something to do with the heart.”Read More »
This South American adventure drama finds Charles (Charles Aznavour), a youthful
Frenchman traveling to Paraguay to start a new life. Seeking out a rich uncle, the
idealistic nephew is rejected by his miserly relation, and he goes on to get involved with
a shady woman and a band of gun runners who supply arms for the revolution of the
week. Charles and his new girlfriend head for the border after a shootout with federal
troops, and a kindly railroad worker hides the couple in an abandoned copper mine.
Charles is later thrown in prison while the girl becomes a concubine, but her violator is
killed when Charles escapes to rescue her and exact revenge. A pretty harrowing
composition could be written by the young couple on “How I Spent My Summer
Vacation.” ~ Dan Pavlides, RoviRead More »