(The Day When,1997)
Un divan à New York
(aka A Couch in New York,1996)
Thursday 12th March 2015, 7pm
We have not seen Le jour où, and so eagerly anticipate this screening.
Akerman told Nicole Brenez in the Lola 'Pajama Interview' in 2011 that it is, "at its heart, a homage to Godard".
What could be better? - her first film, Saute ma ville,was indebted to Pierrot le fou after all.
dir. Chantal Akerman, 1997, 7 mins
The plot of Un divan à New York can read like the outline of a 50s melodrama: a dour New York psychoanalyst Henry (William Hurt) decides to house swap his Fifth Avenue apartment for a place in Paris. He ends up in the bohemian home of a dancer named Béatrice (Juliette Binoche). She is as insouciant as he is dour, and messy as he is tidy.
But Henry’s patients love Béatrice, and she finds she really can help them. Coming home, Henry finds his world in superb shape. Even his dog is happier. Henry has the wit to lie on her couch.
Akerman’s confection has a lightness that is hard to catch if in a hurry. Good to watch some Lubitsch beforehand to get into the mood. Then think of Peter Bogdanovich talking about Lubitsch’s style (and imagine that he is describing Akerman: “Something light, strangely indefinable, yet nonetheless tangible… one can feel this certain spirit; not only in the tactful and impeccably appropriate placement of the camera, the subtle economy of his plotting, the oblique dialogue which had a way of saying everything through indirection, but also - and particularly - in the performance of every single player, no matter how small the role."
(read the whole article here.)
Cast: Juliette Binoche, William Hurt,
Stéphanie Buttle, Barbara Garrick
Dir. Chantal Akerman, 1996, 105 mins