Wednesday, January 12, 2011
Eduardo de Gregorio - Sérail aka Surreal Estate (1976)
As a scriptwriter (mainly for Rivette and Bertolucci), de Gregorio repeatedly subverted narrative expectations, and here - his first feature as writer/director - he indulges in the perilous but pleasing game of developing the characters played by Bulle Ogier and Marie-France Pisier in the film-within-the-film of Rivette's Céline and Julie. An English novelist (Corin Redgrave) is lured, with disconcerting and disorienting results, into purchasing a crumbling mansion by what he imagines are the deliberately 'literary' ploys of its housekeeper (Leslie Caron) and two mysterious, lurking women. Richly photographed, what starts as a slightly self-conscious exercise develops, after many deceptive twists, into an intriguing and gratifying sensual entertainment. (Time Out)
Review by x2frnz at IMDb:
This is a pretty, stylish, spooky, sexy film from France which is the serious version of Jacques Rivette's "Celine and Julie Go Boating". Without those two whimsical psychic sleuths, the mysterious hauntings proceed unhampered by the silly intrusion of physical comedy. Surprisingly, Marie-France Pisier and Bulle Ogier, reprising their roles as slinky shades from that previous film, get through this repetition in just under 90 minutes! Corin Redgrave is excellent in this film (and very handsome!) Production quality is high Euro art film style. Especially recommended to fans of Rivette's film and the lovely Bulle Ogier!
included: French hardsubs on the English dialogue