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Elle Directed by Paul Verhoeven Opens November 11 Michele Leblanc doesn’t cry after she’s raped by a masked intruder in the opening scene of Paul Verhoeven’s Elle. She doesn’t scream either, nor does she call the police, or phone a friend. She simply picks herself up, dusts herself off, and calmly sweeps up the glass that’s been shattered in the wake of this particularly heinous act of violence, as a trickle of blood runs down the inside...
Costume Party is a monthly column exploring fashion, personal style, and historical aesthetics in film. In her forty-plus year career, Isabelle Huppert has been a stalwart of French cinema, enlivening any number of auteur productions with her aloof redheaded presence. Huppert stars in two films premiering at the New York Film Festival in October, Paul Verhoeven’s Elle (in theaters November 11) and Mia Hansen-Løve’s Things to Come (in theaters December 2). In anticipation of a...
So much theater today amounts to bite-sized snacks that barely whet your appetite, but Krzysztof Warlikowski’s Phaedra(s) is like a feast or ceremony that provides theatrical sustenance for days on end. It is divided into roughly three sections and runs about three and a half hours, and it is presided over by the post-modern queen of perversity herself, Isabelle Huppert. Many writers have told the story of the royal Phaedra, and Warlikowski samples a...
Bonjour Tristesse (1958) Directed by Otto Preminger “You go to a place, you leave a place.” Such is the hollow existence the carefree bourgeoisie playboys (and girls) lead along the Riviera in Preminger’s adaption of Françoise Sagan’s novella. It’s clichéd, undoubtedly, and not perhaps the subject matter one usually associates with the Austrian auteur, more commonly aligned with the left-leaning epics he would come to produce. Indeed, Bonjour Tristesse marks the end of a phase in...