Brilliant sculptress, Camille Claudel, protege of Auguste Rodin, and sister of Christian poet Paul Claudel, is confined to a remote church-run insane asylum in the french countryside. Bruno Dumont's Camile Claudel, 1915 is a rigorous portrait of a woman's whose artistic expression conflicted with the expectations of Christianity in early 20th century French Society. It's a film very much about artistic expression and the forces of society that which to regulate or restrict one's ideas simply because they aren't the norm. Typical of Dumont's work, Camille Claudel 1915 is a tepidly paced film with beautiful cinematography. The film is a bit of a slog at times but there is no denying the hypnotic effect Dumont's aesthetic can have on a viewer. Dumont sprinkles the film with real asylum patients as well, making the film feel incredibly authentic and all the more disturbing. Juliette Binonche is phenomenal in the film, capturing the grief, desperation, and isolation Camille feels from losing her fundamental rights of mental and artistic freedom. Camille has a somewhat troubled mind sure, but the film also suggests that artistic expression is a necessity that only further destroys the mind and soul when taken away. Bruno Dumont's Camille Claudel 1915 is a film just as much about censorship as it is about the repression of Christianity, painting a fascinating portrait of the importance of free will and artistic expression.
Love of all things cinema brought me here.