Demy’s first fictional film, based on a short play by Jean Cocteau, in which he already shows his obsession with the subject of love and his interest in the chromatic effects that were to be so typical later on in his career.
This film is not currently playing on MUBI but 30 other great films are. See what’s now showing
Demy's first narrative film is this short adaptation of a one act play by Jean Cocteau. It's quite a wonderful little confection marked with a visual scheme and apt music score which would show up in his sixties' output. Jean Marais is quite wonderful in this showy role with a 20 minute plus monologue. A great foreshadowing of Demy's career to come.
Great dialogue and acting. Thoughts of a desperate woman in love shot in a depressing hotel room, as empty as the man's heart. Red and black, the ideal colour combination to convey the angst caused by loneliness suffered by the woman at the hands of an indifferent lover.
As has been pointed out (moderators?), the guy isn't Jean Marais, he's a bit of rough called Angelo Bellini, who apparently makes but this single (silent) contribution to cinema. He is, however, extremely 'bel'. Cocteau wrote this playlet for Edith Piaf. Her peformance is on Youtube. Interesting contrast. The film is gorgeous, but no sympathy is generated for the female protaganist, and the effect is stifiling.
There is a depth in this film. It's minimalism may be a metaphor - for someone in love there's nothing else, the relationship becomes the whole world. And in this case, the red room is this whole world. Unfortunatelly, our heroine is not lucky. Her suffering is quiet, hidden. And it's huge.
This 28-minute short is essentially one monologue, but it is still very moving and has a surprising amount of style. I'm not very familiar with Demy's other work, but I'll be sure to check some of it out after watching this.