"A man and a woman with biblical names (Elie and Jean-Baptiste) played by two Bressonian actors (Anne Wiazemsky and Thierry de Maublanc). Shock treatment meets overdose under the rooftops of Paris. And between them, Swan, the child, a badly kept secret. The Swan, a sign of life and mutual survival: the child of children, a fragment of trembling celluloid."
- Serge Daney, The Severe Cure, extract from the booklet.
After the generational upheaval of May ’68 and its aftermath, and the personal upheavals of drug addiction, depression, and shock therapy, Garrel made the conscious decision to turn away from the increasingly private poetry of his earlier work, at the center of which was his great love Nico. He turned to the great screenwriter Annette Wadamant, who helped him to organize his thoughts into a narrative of “things that happened to me,” and the result was this spare, elemental, devastating film about two damaged souls (Henri de Maublanc and Anne Wiazemsky) trying to build a life together as her child (Xuan Lindenmeyer) is taken away.
“The forefathers said there was a frame. Then the French New Wave said there was an angle. As for us, we say there is a height, the height of our interlocutor’s eyes. Our films are more like a subjective and dialectic dialogue, rather than a point of view on the world.”
- Philippe Garrel
“It’s as if this autobiographical film has succeeded in holding its bearings without forgetting the trace of each stage of the journey it’s passed through.”
- Serge Daney
Director: Philippe Garrel
Camera: Pascal Laperrousaz
Music: Faton Cahen, Didier Lockwood
Cast: Anne Wiazemsky, Henri de Maublanc, Xuan Lindenmeyer, Cécile Le Bailly, Elli Medeiros
- 95 minutes
- Sound (Mono)
Total Running Time: 01:35:00
Language: French with English Subtitles
Booklet Text: Serge Daney, Philippe Garrel, Thomas Lescure (44 pages, in French and in English)
Published By: Re:Voir Video
Institutional Price: $300 (plus shipping)
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