EVERYTHING ABOUT A MOVIE?
|CHLOE IN THE AFTERNOON (L'Amour, L'Apres-Midi) (LOVE IN THE AFTERNOON) (director/writer: Eric Rohmer; cinematographer: Nestor Almendros; editor: Cecile Decugis; music: Arié Dzierlatka; cast: Bernard Verley (Frederic), Zouzou (Chloe), Françoise Verley (Helene), Daniel Ceccaldi (Gerard), Malvina Penne (Fabienne), Babette Ferrier (Martine), Frédérique Hender (Mme. M.), Claude-Jean Philippe (Mr. M.), Beatrice Romand (Dream Sequence), Marie-Christine Barrault (Dream Sequence); Runtime: 97; MPAA Rating: R; producer: Pierre Cottrell; Fox Lorber; 1972-France-in French with English subtitles)|
|"Though the film is talky and boring, its
moral ethic lesson is compelling even if the hero isn't."
Reviewed by Dennis Schwartz
last of Eric Rohmer's ("My Night
at Maud's"/"Claire's Knee"/"Pauline
at the Beach") Six
Moral Tales is also about a conflict between what a man wants and what
he gets (usually a woman he loves and one he lusts after). This time
the protagonist, Frederic (Bernard Verley), is a dull married bourgeois Paris
executive, who is partners in a thriving small business with the
easy-going Gerard (Daniel
Ceccaldi). Frederic is happily married to English teacher Helene (Françoise
Verley, a real-life married couple) for three years and the suburban
couple have a cute daughter, and are expecting another child.
long prologue sets up Frederic as someone with a roving eye for women,
a daydreamer (of previous Rohmer
someone who imagines making love with strange women he encounters in
the street during his afternoon stroll, and who conservatively flirts
with his attractive secretary (Malvina
without really flirting. All the time Frederic is
faithful, and enjoys the freedom of spending unorthodox lunch hours by
going on shopping sprees.
his stable cushy life enters the unstable Chloe (Zouzou), a girlfriend of his old friend Bruno.
Chloe is a free spirit who has been away from France the last six
years, living in America and Spain. She starts coming regularly to his
office for long chats and sees him during his lunch break, and involves
him with her constant change of jobs (barmaid, waitress and boutique
store clerk) and apartments. He feels comfortable talking to her in an
intimate way he doesn't with his wife and is tempted to have an affair
with her, but when she finally offers herself to him he can't cheat on
his wife. In fact, this slight stumble brings him closer to his chilly
is trying to make a distinction between love and sex, while addressing
his theme of marital infidelity. He actually salutes his unappealing
hero for being so bourgeois, self-absorbed and faithful.
Though the film is talky and boring, its moral ethic lesson is
compelling even if the hero isn't.
REVIEWED ON 6/6/2010 GRADE: B-
Dennis Schwartz: "Ozus' World Movie Reviews"
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