Wednesday, July 15, 2009

This is from Olivier Assayas' segment for Paris, Je T'aime: a great, clear moment in a soggy film. Sometimes you see an actor in a movie and you think "What a perfect face for that role!" So I wonder if Assayas cast Lionel Dray entirely based on his hands, the way so many actors or actresses have been cast for their faces. They're long hands, with fingers that stretch out like snails towards Maggie Gyllenhaal's neck. Desire expressed through physiognomy.


craig keller. said...

I've always had a problem with everyone who's pooh-poohed Paris je t'aime, because it discounts-by-association the Assayas and the Van Sant and the Suwa.

I can't remember whether the Podalydès is good, nor the Doyle. I do remember that the Coixet and the Payne and the Coenx2 are among the worst films I've ever seen. The Tywker is an offensive pile of shit, the corrective of which is Hou's Le Voyage du ballon rouge.

In any case, it would do to rename the film Three Modern Shorts by Assayas - Suwa - Van Sant in order to flag the work rightly as an important component of '00s cinema, even despite the absence of JLG's contribution.

Ignatiy Vishnevetsky said...

Yes, it's an old problem with omnibus films: some episodes may be very strong, while others are weak. So rather than calling it a bad film, I've decided to stick with calling it a soggy one: strong, crisp elements surrounded by mush. The Doyle episode is alright; it's what you'd expect from the man who directed Away With Words, though nowhere as strong as that film. To me, though, the Assayas episode is far and away the strongest.