Compelling and eccentric, this boldly stylized film elucidates the unfulfilling love lives and fledging vocations of two young couples in 70s Paris.
Screened as part of NZIFF 2005
Compelling and eccentric, Eugène Green’s boldly stylized Le Pont des Arts elucidates the unfulfilling love lives and fledgling vocations of two young couples in 70s Paris. It also provides slashing satire of vicious homosexual power-mongering in the French Baroque music and theatre ‘industry’, where Green has long been a player. Pascal, a literature student struggling with his thesis, and Sarah, a singer of Baroque music, are both involved in relationships with devoted partners who’d prefer them to be less like artists. Sarah’s boyfriend is especially remiss in ignoring the depth of her vulnerability to the monstrous conductor for whom she is recording a Monteverdi aria. Our involvement in their separate journeys is very much tied to the hope that fate – the filmmaker – will bring them together. The piercing soulfulness of the young leads and the solemnity with which the camera confronts their emotional and spiritual turmoil evoke 70s Bresson. This strangely affecting film justifies the homage. — BG