At first look it’s a L’Herbier film with dazzling interiors echoing L’Inhumaine and drama orbiting around a vice. Then the sea starts etching rhythm into the scenes like the repeated verse in „Dansons la gigue” and you understand it’s Epstein and his ubiquitous water clock. One, two, three, tide – the blue bejeweled prosody of the pendulum waves carves deep in rock and film. Closet of silences or exile path, jealous
A real leap forward for Epstein. In the early stages, before the plot and intrigue kick in, the best filmmaking of the era is going on. Here we have Epstein: élan vital, the seething dreamlife of reality, the wind and (especially) the sea. In the end there is the small consolation available to those to whom life has happened ... and happened hard. Nice to see far-off America represented as a repository of failure.