THE CREATURES (Agnès Varda, 1966)

Writer-director Agnès Varda’s playful Les créatures sparkles and captivates. It is one of those works where we’re not always sure what is real and what is being imagined, especially since the protagonist is a writer continually in the throes of creating. But, of course, the imagination is also “real,” as are the solitude and loneliness […]

LINE OF DEMARCATION (Claude Chabrol, 1966)

The Germans have already invaded France. In the winter of 1941, in a village in the Jura Mountains, the Loue River divides Free France and Occupied France. The bleak grayness of Jean Rabier’s immaculate black-and-white cinematography in writer-director Claude Chabrol’s La ligne de démarcation expresses the sadness of the French people, and the defeatism of […]

ALICE, OR THE LAST ESCAPADE (Claude Chabrol, 1976)

“It’s useless to ask questions, for there are no answers.”  “You cannot escape your fate.”   Dedicated to Fritz Lang, who had died earlier that year, writer-director Claude Chabrol’s Alice ou la dernière fugue certainly expresses Lang’s fatalistic view of life. It is one of the most chilling and nightmarish films I have seen—and one […]