Borderlands (Zev Berman, 2007): 6.5/10

The Magic Flute (Ingmar Bergman, 1975): 7/10

La Guerre Est Finie (Alain Resnais, 1966): 7/10

Speed Racer (The Wachowski Brothers, 2008): 8/10

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Monday, November 06, 2006

La Collectionneuse (Eric Rohmer, 1967)

The fifth of Rohmer's Six Moral Tales that I've seen, La Collectionneuse is the story of two men, Adrien and Daniel, who stay at a friend's villa for a month in the summer, only to find that their friend has also allowed Haydee to stay. They play games with Haydee, sleep with her, are cruel to her, and think about morality, much like in Rohmer's other films. This is one of my least favorite Moral Tales, because of the uttery despicability of Adrien and Daniel, two incredibly pretentious, cruel, empty young men. Adrien is the protagonist and narrator of the story, and his rationalizations of his behavior toward Haydee (with whom he has a quasi-affair even though he has a girlfriend whom he professes to love very much) are among the most pompous I've seen in film history.

Daniel and Adrien use Haydee physically and then abuse her verbally, especially in one particularly vicious scene, where the two sit a few yards from Haydee and discuss what an 'immoral slut' and 'collector' of men she is, and how she occupies the lowest rungs of society with her masculine (my word) behavior. Perhaps they see themselves in Haydee, and hate her for it? Anyway, Haydee never quite fights back, only ignores them and occasionally half-heartedly defends herself. To her character, though, she does not take their idle insults to heart, recognizing that they are just another way to fill up their empty lives by putting down others. Haydee is a likeable character, with her lack of shame for her sexual pursuits. The movie is really brought down, though, by the two main men in the film, who are so unlikeable that it just gets boring. Once Daniel leaves the film, the final third is rather boring, even, and the ending, predictable as it was, left me angry. La Collectionneuse represents the men in Rohmer's cycle at their worst: pretentious, angry, and misogynistic, traits that get tiring rather quickly.


RIYL: Truffaut at his most immature

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