One night while on vacation, Jean Fournier (Claude Mann), a bank employee, is introduced to gambling by a friend and soon becomes hooked. Intoxicated by winning large amounts of money, Jean abandons his normal middle-class existence and moves to the South of France where he meets Jackie (Jeanne Moreau), a compulsive gambler. Jean is fascinated by Jackie’s insolent beauty and a feeling of complicity is soon established between them – but there is also a misunderstanding. Jean is sincerely in love with Jackie, whereas Jackie only puts up with Jean out of superstition; she believes that he brings her luck. Together, they win and lose considerable sums at the table, but Jean soon grows tired of this rootless, chaotic life, as well of being the “mascot” of Jackie, for whom it seems that life itself is just a game of chance. –Wellspring
Born in 1931 in the seaport city of Nantes, Jacques Demy experienced a happy childhood. The son of an auto mechanic, Demy’s love for cinema inspired him to make home movies in 8mm. He would work as an apprentice to animator Paul Grimault and later as assistant to film-maker Georges Rouquier before starting his own career by directing a series of shorts. Le bel indifférent (1957) was an adaptation of a play by Jean Cocteau, notable for marking the start of his lifelong collaboration with art director Bernard Evein. The film’s use of color and sophistication of technique gained favorable notice from Jean-Luc Godard in the pages of Cahiers du Cinéma; the magazine that served as the organ of the French New Wave. Demy would share with the New Wave a love for American genre films, specifically the musicals of Vincente Minnelli and Stanley Donen. Another important influence was the films of Max Ophüls, to whom he would dedicate his first feature Lola.
Made in 1961, Lola’s playful approach… read more
I love this film. I love the score, the setting, the camerawork and, above all, Moreau. She is absolutely captivating here.