Dedications: My four late friends Rory, Stan, Bryan, Jeff - shine on you crazy diamonds, they would have blogged too. Then theres Garry from Brisbane, Franco in Milan, Mike now in S.F. / my '60s-'80s gang: Ned & Joseph in Ireland; in England: Frank, Des, Guy, Clive, Joe & Joe, Ian, Ivan, Nick, David, Les, Stewart, the 3 Michaels / Catriona, Sally, Monica, Jean, Ella, Anne, Candie / and now: Daryl in N.Y., Jerry, John, Colin, Martin and Donal.
Saturday, 18 June 2011
Movies I Love: THE HISTORY OF ADELE H
Francois Truffaut's 1975 L'HISTOIRE DE ADELE H is one of those movies that enthralled me so much that I came out of the cinema as it was snowing in a state of total rapture. The story is mesmerising as is Isabelle Adjani, who made her film reputation with this, after being an acclaimed stage actress. She is just so haunting and compelling and incredibly beautiful, and has been so accomoplished ever since. THE BRONTE SISTERS was more Victorian costume drama but she had less to do and it was a much lesser film, but she also scored in items like THE DRIVER, CAMILLE CLAUDEL, LE REINE MARGOT, BON VOYAGE and others. (We won't mention ISHTAR!) Here though at 19, she is the daughter of France's great writer Victor Hugo and we find her in Halifax, Nova Scotia in 1863 on the trail of a French officer Lt Pinson (Bruce Robinson) whom she is madly in love with. He however does not return her obsessive love and we watch fascinated as she turns into a stalker following him and recording everyting in her diary. Joseph Blatchley is the other young man who has feelings for her, but Adele is only aware of Pinson, even giving him money for other women.
Finally, madness overwhelms her as she follows Pinson to his next post in Barbados, where she is found penniless and is returned by Madame Baa to her father in Jersey. One chilling scene has Adele in a world of her own passing Pinson in the street and not even recognising him as she is so far gone in her own world. It is a vivid stunning performance - and it is just as powerful now. I just like the look and period feel to the film, one of Truffaut's literary films, which is probably the best ever on the nature of obsessive love. [Adjani, one of France's great actresses, has had quite a tempestous life too, including relationships with Beatty, and a son by Daniel Day-Lewis].