To me it's the most devastating film in Rivette's oeuvre because of the grand nonnarrative tragedy looming behind the ethereal, ghost-like story. It's the only one of his films to have woken me up at night thinking about its consequences.
This is a beautiful little film yet It's full of anomalies, It’s not at all hard to believe that Rivette was in the initial stages of dementia while making it. The story revolves around a supposedly super-dangerous circus act that when re-enacted at the end of the movie doesn't seem that dangerous at all. The film will, however, cause RV owners to immediately look up the cost of overseas vehicle transport.
This is one of those movies that I enjoyed but don't know if I could recommend to anybody. The only reasons to see this are the scenery and Birken's affecting performance. One of Rivette's themes is artifice, but this is *too* artificial, as when the writers lazily have the heroine reveal plot points by talking to a headstone. Of Birken's incredible youthful sexiness, only her sweetness remains, but that's enough.
the first film i've seen from director Jacques Rivette. the film centers around a traveling circus playing in mountain villages to very small audiences. the film explore the characters' grief, search, regret and redemption; employing a mixture of drama, whimsical comedy and abstract romance.. i get all that. but unfortunately it didn't speak to me; could be because i'm not accustomed to Rivette's style