Moreau’s debut feature as a director is an intimate, rather private film. Lumierechronicles the life of four actresses of different ages and their complex relationships with one another, their families, other women, men and their careers. Sarah (Moreau), an actress nearing 40 and at the summit of her career, invites the woman who has been her best friend and two younger women to her holiday retreat in Provence. The group indulge in the simple pleasures of lounging in hammocks, enjoying the sun and food, and talking about men. The main action revolves around a dinner party given in Sarah’s honour, and the story of Sarah’s earlier involvement with a man she had long taken for granted as a platonic friend. Although made at the height of feminist filmmaking in the 1970s, Lumieresidesteps the political in favour of the personal. I did not want to make a film about women, Moreau commented, but a film about feelings and people, a film about life.
France, 1975. English subtitles. Colour. 95 mins.

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