Françoise Lebrun

  • Paul Vecchiali – En haut des marches AKA At the Top of the Stairs (1983)

    1991-2000DramaFrancePaul Vecchiali

    Plot: Françoise Canavaggia (Danielle Darrieux) heads back to Toulon in 1963 with murderous plans for the people who now inhabit the villa that had once been hers. After arriving in Toulon, Françoise meets up with her sister and a niece, both adding to her tendency toward self-analysis. But with images of the present and past mixed with memories and fantasies of the past — and excerpts from speeches by Petain and De Gaulle combined with psychological and philosophical ramblings — director Paul Vecchiali has created complexities that many an audience will never figure out. ~ Eleanor Mannikka, All Movie GuideRead More »

  • Gaspar Noé – Vortex (2021)

    Drama2021-2030ArthouseFranceGaspar Noé

    The last days of an elderly couple stricken by dementia.Read More »

  • Michèle Rosier – Mon coeur est rouge (1976)

    1971-1980ArthouseFranceMichèle RosierThe Female Gaze

    Michèle Rosier (1930-2017) was a pioneering fashion designer (she created the vinyl-intensive V de V sportswear label), a journalist who worked as editor of the women’s lifestyle magazine Le Noveau Femina, and an avowed leftist. She also had a 40+ year career behind the camera, directing several documentaries for French television as well as a handful of theatrical features, most famously the George Sand biopic GEORGE QUI?, starring Anne Wiazemsky. Rosier’s cumulative body of work is staggering, and the movies bely an utterly idiosyncratic filmmaking sensibility: wryly funny, curious about people, jazz-suffused (with scores by Mal Waldron, Keith Jarrett and Aldo Romano) and forever interrogating the limits of liberation in post-1968 France.Read More »

  • Jean Eustache – La maman et la putain (1973)

    1971-1980ArthouseDramaFranceJean EustacheThe Films of May '68

    A few days of a dandyish French intellectual in his late 20s named Alexandre (Jean-Pierre Leaud), who’s living with and supported by his lover, Marie (Bernadette Lafont); she’s in her mid-30s and runs a small boutique. In the first scene he borrows a neighbor’s car and tracks down a former girlfriend, Gilberte (Isabelle Weingarten), who’s just started a new semester at the Sorbonne, and tries to persuade her to marry him, only to discover that she’s just agreed to marry someone else. (We and Alexandre briefly glimpse Gilberte with her husband, played by Eustache, toward the end of the film, in the liquor section of a department store.) After hanging out with an equally idle friend (Jacques Renard) at the Deux Magots cafe, Alexandre follows a young woman after she leaves a nearby table, asks for her phone number, and scores; the remainder of the film is devoted to his courting of her.Read More »

  • Paul Vecchiali – Trous de mémoire (1985)

    1981-1990ArthouseFrancePaul Vecchiali

    Improvisation by Paul Vecchiali and Françoise Lebrun – On Paul’s initiative, Françoise and Paul met after a long separation, on the pretext to search in commun for a lost memory, a song. It soons appears that Paul’s objective is to win her back.

    Quand j’écrivais le scénario de En haut des marches, je me suis trouvé en panne à un moment du récit. Impossible de discerner ce qui me bloquait. En sortant d’Auditel, qui comptait une dizaine de salles de montage où travaillaient, entre autres, Jacques Demy et Éric Rohmer, j’ai croisé Françoise Lebrun, connue elle aussi au Studio Parnasse.Read More »

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