A film which examines the once-happy marriage between a painter, Frederic, and his movie-star wife, Angele. Frederic and Angele go on Roman holiday, inviting their friends, another young-couple in Paul and Elisabeth, who join them in their home. Philippe Garrel's latest film is a film which shows the slow disintegration of a once loving and passionate marriage. There are very few scenes of emotional outburst, instead Garrell tells a nuanced tale of deception and the act of a couple falling out of love. This loss of love is shown in the details -a small gaze or empty kiss, showing how the couple's inability to be honest with each other is their ultimate undoing. The film is brooding and atmospheric, never picking sides, rather showing the faults of both Frederic and Angele. Each of them are partly responsible for their issue, yet they only seem to blame the other as the reason for their dissolving marriage. Paul and Elizabeth's story provides a great dichotomy to the main story, as their relationship is much newer than Frederic and Angele's relationship, yet they face challenges of their own. We see them heading down the same path, yet in the end, they are much more willing to fight for each other. Perhaps this is the point which Garrel is trying to make, considering how the rest of the film plays out for both Frederic and Angele, two individuals who never find someone who can compare. One moment which must be touched on is a hypnotic, mesmerizing sequence in the film - a torrid dance sequence where Angele dances with another man at a party, showing her flirtatious ways. Garrell fills the frame completely simply observing Angele dance, flirtatious in her movements, a quiet yet telling sequence. While the color aesthetic just seems weird for a Garrel film, the starkness and themes are very much in his arena. While it's obviously not one of Garrel's best, he once again shows such a great understanding of when to linger in the moment, almost like a dream or memory, which he uses to tell a piercing tale of bad romance.
Love of all things cinema brought me here.