Limitless Cinema in Broken English

September 13, 2010

RIP CLAUDE CHABROL AND ALAIN CORNEAU

Filed under: Uncategorized — celinejulie @ 12:20 am

TEN THINGS I LIKE IN CLAUDE CHABROL’S FILMS

1. I worship the ending of LA CÉRÉMONIE. When I was a child, I couldn’t bear watching some Thai TV series, such as BARN SAI THONG (GOLDEN SAND HOUSE), in which the heroine is too submissive. I couldn’t identify myself with this kind of Thai TV series at all. When I grew up and saw LA CÉRÉMONIE, I got to understand what my dream version of Thai TV series should be.

2. I like it very much that the good girls usually die faster than the bad girls in his films, especially in LES BONNES FEMMES and POULET AU VINAIGRE. His films are not moralistic in the same way as most mainstream films.

3. I like it very much that his films contain the same elements found in most thriller films, but his films don’t try to fit into the thriller genre. THE LITTLE OLD MAN FROM BATIGNOLLES (2009) is about a murder mystery, but the film doesn’t try to create any suspense. The murder investigation in this film is presented as if it is just a leisure walk in the park, not a roller coaster ride in an amusement park like in most thriller films. THE COLOR OF LIES (1999) doesn’t focus on who the killer is, but focuses on the consequences of suspicion in a village. THE FLOWER OF EVIL begins with a letter from a secret person, but the film doesn’t reveal who this secret person is, because the film seems to focus on something else.

4. Morally-dubious main characters, such as the abortionist-heroine of STORY OF WOMEN (1988), which doesn’t try to elicit as much sympathy from the viewers as VERA DRAKE (2004, Mike Leigh, A+).

5. His films explore the dark side of human beings, especially at the ending of PLEASURE PARTY (1975).

6. The slow-burning quality, especially in LA CÉRÉMONIE, PLEASURE PARTY, THE FLOWER OF EVIL, LES BICHES, THE COUSINS, and THE UNFAITHFUL WIFE.

7. His films thrill me with my own imagination, not what exactly happens in the films. While watching THE COLOR OF LIES, I almost had a heart attack watching Valeria Bruni Tedeschi confronting Sandrine Bonnaire while Sandrine is ironing some clothes. I thought that Sandrine might use her iron to kill Valeria in that scene.

8. LE BOUCHER seems to be a very immoral film, as immoral as THE STORY ABOUT YOU AND ME (2010, Alwa Ritsila), which also presents true love of psychotic persons. But the immorality of these films is what makes them interesting.

9. Are there any feel-good films made by Chabrol?

10. Strong female charactes, especially the character played by Suzanne Flon in THE FLOWER OF EVIL, the two female judges in THE COMEDY OF POWER, and the female inspector in THE COLOR OF LIES.

Claude Chabrol’s films I have seen:
(in roughly preferential order)

1. LA CÉRÉMONIE (1995)

2. LES BONNES FEMMES (1960)

3. POULET AU VINAIGRE (1985)

4.THE COLOR OF LIES (1999)

5.LE BOUCHER (1970)

6.PLEASURE PARTY (1975)

7.LE BEAU SERGE (1958)

8.THE FLOWER OF EVIL (2003)

9.LES BICHES (1968)

10.THE COUSINS (1959)

11.THE UNFAITHFUL WIFE (1969)

12.THE LITTLE OLD MAN FROM BATIGNOLLES (2009)

13.THE BEAST MUST DIE (1969)

14.THE CRY OF THE OWL (1987)

15.A COMEDY OF POWER (2006)

16.STORY OF WOMEN (1988)

17.MADAME BOVARY (1991)

18.À DOUBLE TOUR (1959)

19.THE BLOOD OF OTHERS (1984)

20.HELL (1994)

21.CLUB EXTINCTION (1990)

————————————————

ALAIN CORNEAU (1943-2010)

Corneau’s films I have seen:

1. SÉRIE NOIRE (1979)

2. POLICE PYTHON 357 (1976)

3. FEAR AND TREMBLING (2003)

4. TOUS LES MATINS DU MONDE (1991)

5. LE COUSIN (1997)

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