As Hawker puts it, "Léaud's performance in which his character gradually finds himself out of his depth, devastated, in which a carefully constructed masculinity proves insufficient to the messy demands and challenges placed on it by two women is painful to watch, but it's also fascinating to see him going quietly, as it were." Considering the film's theme the death of a liberated era, as exemplified by the impossibility of a healthy love triangle one cannot avoid feeling that the end of Léaud's character signifies the conclusion of one of recent European history's most volatile and important periods.
Léaud's iconic status figures as an undercurrent in his more recent appearances in films such as Bernardo Bertolucci's The Dreamers (2003), Aki Kaurismäki's La Vie de Bohème (1992), and especially Olivier Assayas's Irma Vep (1996). In casting Léaud as an old French director whose heyday is long past and who is hopelessly trying to create a remake of Louis Feuillade's Les Vampires (1915), Assayas joins the actor in winking sympathetically at the now-idolized and perhaps idealized past he represents a time of general excitement and experimentation, when everything seemed possible and cinema was daring.
JEAN-PIERRE LÉAUD: THE NEW WAVE AND AFTER
Jan. 18Feb. 19, $5.50$9.50
Pacific Film Archive
2575 Bancroft, Berk.
Most Commented On
- Illegals did come here illegally and are here illegally. - May 18, 2013
- Is that like "one of my friends is black and - May 18, 2013
- This debate isn't about healthcare but since you mentioned it, - May 18, 2013
- If Greg makes it up, it must be true. - May 18, 2013
- And just to clarify, when I write of my "bullshit detector," - May 18, 2013
- No more housing market - May 18, 2013
- I agree. He might also want - May 18, 2013
- Start addressing the fact - May 18, 2013
- The Toronto Star which broke - May 18, 2013
- Harman beat Winograd by 16% - May 17, 2013