Providence (1979) - Alain Resnais
Clive Langham, a successful but drunkard author, finds his health failing him, secluding himself at his Providence estate where he works on his latest novel. For his latest story, Clive bases his characters on his own family - his two sons, Claude and Kevin, as well as Claude's wife Sonia. Writing a melodramatic tale about a bittler love triangle between the three of them, Clive uses a heavy dose of imagination, symbolism, and just plain fantasy to craft his tale. Alain Resnais' Providence is a unique take on a relatively simplie story that paints a powerful portrait of memory and time. Clive writes a tale of three hateful, selfish individuals, particularly Claude, who basically set out to destory eachother. With Resnais' typically surrealistic touches and great performances by everyone involved, Providence is a very engaging and atypical tale that exposes a man's faltering mind. When the real-life versions of Claude, Kevin, and Sonia come to visit, it becomes clear that Clive is really the man with animosity with Resnais delivering a powerful meditation on time and memory. Clive's story is basically an autobiographical tale, with Claude being a selfish individual whose embittered and devious. That being said, Resnais manages to make Clive a sympathetic character by the end, a man whose memories seem to have completely faded with time. With brilliant comedic flourishes, Alain Resnais' Providence is another one-of-a-kind experience, telling a pensive tale of a man losing to time.
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