38 years after the events in the Luis Buñuel classic Belle du jour, Henri Husson thinks he sees Séverine one night at a concert. He follows her and makes her face her past and then takes a slow revenge on her.
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BELLE TOUJOURS is essentially an immensely satisfying apéritif, compact and modest, sure, but containing some seriously magic kind of ethanol or something. Oliveira is a fastidious assembler of formal units, and he has a peerless ability to imbue everyday inanimate objects w/ aura; he brings cinema back to its basic origins as a quasi-occult conjuring. BELLE TOUJOURS feels very much like a seance.
Does old Bulle Ogier resemble more a young Deneuve than aged Deneuve herself? Perhaps she does and that would pass unnoticed (nothing unheard-of to cast different actors in a '30+ years later' role, though Oliveira preserves Piccoli from Belle du Jour's old crew) if this film wasn't also, honoring Buñuel, a diachronic approach to his casting methods. Augier succeeds Deneuve in playing Belle just as Bouquet and Molina
De Oliveira's pseudo sequel to the classic Bunuel film ( Belle de Jour) is an interesting take on regrets and nostalgia mixed with a black comedic streak of sadism. Interesting if unfulfilling scripting topped by a wonderful turn by the always reliable Michel Piccoli well supported by several members of the director's later day stock company.