Drama Adaptation of a poem dating from the 12th Century from Chrétien de Troyes, Perceval le Gallois is a unique film that chronicles Perceval’s knighthood, maturation and eventual peerage amongst the Knights of the Round Table, and also contains brief episodes from the story of Gawain and the crucifixion of Christ. Unlike other screen adaptations of Arthurian legend, the film makes no attempt at situating the characters in a natural or supernatural world. Instead, Perceval and his cohorts inhabit a colorful theatrical realm replete with rudimentary props, stylized backdrops, and a singing chorus that participates in the drama. At many points, characters narrate their own actions and thoughts rather than expressing them manifestly, and dialog is frequently spoken lyrically in rhyming couplets taken directly from the original text. The film’s deliberate artificiality, ironic vision of youthful valor, and frequently shifting narrative modes prevent emotional attachment to the story while leaving space for a more cerebral engagement with the elements of storytelling Rohmer has interpreted from 12th century literature. –Wikipedia
The most subtle and traditional of the many luminaries launched to prominence as a member of the French New Wave, Eric Rohmer is also among the movement’s most consistent and enduring talents. Basing his work upon antecedents in literature as much as those in the cinema, Rohmer made his name crafting talky, feather-light romantic comedies and chamber dramas distinguished by economical camerawork, a warmly ironic tone, an affection for youth, and a fascination with place and time. His intensely personal private life — according to legend, not even his own mother knew he was an internationally acclaimed, albeit pseudonymously named, filmmaker — has stood in direct contrast to the emotional openness of his movies, which, in intimate and illuminating detail, explore the limitless entanglements, disappointments, and possibilities facing contemporary relationships.
Born Jean-Marie Maurice Scherer on December 1, 1920, in Nancy, France, Rohmer later relocated to Paris, where he worked variously… read more
A film so good, I didn't realize it was a musical until the halfway point. Rohmer's best.
even for rohmer, this one is a really odd one. the set design and the painted background are gorgeous to look at, and rohmer really re-creates the context and feel of the source with his dialogue and blocking. it appears to recall bresson with the bare form, and the almost boredom with battle scenes. focus on the importantance of what is said, and most importantly not said is key to the understanding of this work.