French Institute/Alliance Francaise (FIAF) tribute to and retrospective of the work of British/French film star Charlotte Gainsbourg, shown at right, continues apace. Earlier this week TrustMovies caught one of her more interesting and highly sexual outtings, Lover (Amoreuse). Many of her films feature cutting edge sexuality, whether represented visually (along with ultra-violence, as in the current AntiChrist) or philosophically and visually, as in Amoreuse.
Directed by Jacques Doillon (shown below), Amoreuse follows the "adventures" of a young woman, attracted to two different men, who tries to be morally consistent and genuine but manages only to fail pretty miserably. The men fare no better, though the wiser of the two (played by Yvan Attal, Ms Gainsbrough's main squeeze over the past decade) I think retains his sanity and perhaps his self-respect. The other fellow, the lithe and lovely Thomas Langmann, offers such a case of the jealous jitters throughout that you fear for his (and the relationship's) future.
Jane Eyre she did with William Hurt). But that single character grows and learns and changes, while expressing so much variation that she never begins to bore us (not even in the travesty that is AntiChrist).
Early in Amoreuse, when her lover returns from a trip, so delighted is she that she simply lifts him off the ground and carries him across the room (Langmann is slim enough that she can do this), and what a few memorably charming moments this makes. In time her character begins to look like a kind of femme fatale. "I can't fuck you after he's been inside you," the Langmann character notes of the Attal character's recent incursion. "Your womb is poisoned." You don't get this sort of dialog in American-made drama, comedy or sex movies -- a template for all of which is found in Amoreuse.
In the next two weeks you'll have the chance to see the following three Gainsbourg films. I'd advise a visit. Maybe several.
FIAF presents CinémaTuesdays: Charlotte Forever
Times and titles detailed above.
FIAF - Florence Gould Hall, 55 East 59th Street
(between Park and Madison Avenues)
$10; $7 students; Free for FIAF Members
fiaf.org | 212 307 4100
fiaf.org | 212 355 6160
Subway - 4, 5, 6, N, R and W to 59th Street & Lexington Avenue;
F to 63rd Street & Lexington Avenue; E to 53rd Street & 5th Avenue
Bus - M1, M2, M3, M4, Q31 to 59th Street; M5 to 58th Street