Saturday, June 14, 2003

Vendredi Soir, un film de Claire Denis: House hats, city nights, city lights. Capital of the 19th century. Movin’ on out. Packing up the library. Yes, she is. Mild boredom of order. Chaos of memories. Renewing an old world. A wide highway, but not a comfortable one. Traffic jams, transit strikes. Love thy neighbor. Lock your doors. Unlock your doors. Hit the brakes. Hammy radio. Would you like a ride? No thanks, I’ll walk. Come on in. I’m late for the baby. Nap time. Warm leatherette. Keyhole dreams. Boy’s back home. "Our House". Is this guy for real? Cut throat? Phone call. French kicks. Freedom ride. Coffee. Condoms. Jealousy. Empty hotels. Pinball follies. Fancy-pants. Mystic pizza. Meek sex. Just another Dielman? Will she kill him? Kill herself? Knives, ashtrays, heaters, magic lamps. Thriller? Romance? Moods?* Jean, Jean, are you awake? Then run into the streets. 400 Blows. Go see it.

*Denis plays with narrative conventions here like silly putty. Several people who screened this film with me felt it was a Wong Kar-waiesque love opera. I thought it was threatening to explode into violence until the final frame – constantly delaying the narrative payoff (and thank god for that! Narrative payoff would have killed this film). I suppose it reveals itself as a love opera after the fact. Or maybe I had too much coffee.

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