A Winters Tale

Director: Eric Rohmer

Summer in Brittany: hairdresser Felicie (Charlotte Very) whirls thourgh an idylic holiday romance with Charles (Frederic Van Den Driessche), but at their tearful parting she accidentally gives him an incorrect home address. Four years on, its Christmas and he still hasn’t contacted her, but such is her undying love for him and the daughter he sired, that she finds it impossible to choose between tow adoring suitors: her stolid boss Maxence, who asks her to leave Paris and live with him in Nervers, and the unashamedly intellectual Loic, whom she regards primarily as a friend. In short she is obsessed, reluctant to compromise her memories and dreams of true passion, and hoping against hope for a miracle.
In focusing on an often irritatingly indecisive heroine devoted to a barely reasonable romantic ideal, the latest instalment in Eric Rohmer’s Tales of the Four Seasons is reminiscent of The Green Ray; while its wintry study of te varieties of love, fairth and religious belief recalls the similiarly sublime My Night With Maud This is Rohmer at his very best, effortlessly and unsentimentally charting the absurd complexities of human phsychology, while creating a compelling contemporary fairy tale firmly rooted in the banality of everyday existence. It has as ever, enormous compassion, wit and insight, and its ending is exquisitely affecting. Impossible to credit that Rohmer is in his seventies: his understanding of human emotions and thoughts and the true potential of intimate cinema remains undimmed.

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