L’Amour Fou

  • Dir: Jacques Rivette

  • France, 1969, 252min

  • Cast: Bulle Ogier, Jean-Pierre Kalfon

Thoughtfully precise and yet abundantly spontaneous, L’Amour Fou masterfully captures the essence – and inherent oppositions – in Rivette’s magnificent obsession with “the truth of the cinema”. Shot in five weeks and without a conventional script, the late filmmaker’s experimental third feature traces the disintegration of a 1960s couple as it is juxtaposed with rehearsals of Racine’s Greco-Roman-inspired tragedy, Andromaque . Bulle Ogier is stupendous as Claire, an actress whose withdrawal from the play marks her delirious estrangement from her actor-director husband Sébastien (Jean-Pierre Kalfon). A literal and figurative interrogation of theatricality, repetition, narrative structure and perspective, Rivette’s film (shot in 35mm) is regularly interjected by André S. Labarthe’s 16mm documentation of rehearsals and actor interviews. At 252 minutes, this must-watch for any Rivette initiate precurses his epic 760-minute film, Out 1 (1971).

Post-screening talk with William Lau



1. Unless otherwise stated, all films (except English-speaking films) are subtitled in English.

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