The events conspiring to get it made are a wonder - even more impressive then the film is so wonderful. One drawback of depicting the dramatic arts is if there's no delineation between the character and their acting, it all becomes artifice. That happens here, aided with a heavy reliance on dramatic irony, but it's not detrimental to the scope and pleasures of its smaller moments. 3.5
Incontestable chef-d'oeuvre, modèle patenté du classicisme cinématographique français, cette production commencée à Nice, aux studios de la Victorine, interrompue durant trois mois, à cause du débarquement allié en Sicile et poursuivi, dans les studios de Joinville, bénéficiait d'une merveilleuse conjonction entre des acteurs sublimes, un scénario splendide et les merveilleux dialogues de Prévert. www.cinefiches.com
3-4. This film is dripping in delectable metaphors, and there must be something like 3 (or more) nuances for almost every spoken line. However, there are long scenes that play out to illustrate complicated ideas, but comparatively simple plot points. Conflict is barely there for long stretches of the movie, and it hardly seems to effect the characters' decisions. This movie could have used a stronger foundation.
why is the audience meant to worship Baptiste? characters are written troubled and self-obsessed, consumed by their petty traumas, then left to their own devices in a slaphappy b&w revisionist but still misogynistic and retrogressive France out of a Jean Renoir movie. sympathy is disproportionately guided towards male characters, contempt is left for Garrance and Nathalie. long movie does not mean good movie.
Caught this on the big screen last night and didn't realize how long the running time was, but was delighted by how enthralling and compelling the narrative prooved to be. It was a richness to find the long-awaited ending so nuanced. A fine film I would award an extra half star if I could.