The Art of Crime, (2017 – present) stars Nicolas Gob (A French Village) and Éléonore Bernheim.
Murderers in Paris think about art before committing a crime – right? They have the Louvre, and so many famous French artists: Degas, Manet, Monet, Toulouse-Lautrec, and Rodin for starters. Aren’t all Parisians cerebral junkies who feast on literature, opera, art, fashion, wine, and jazz from the time they are born till the time they die? It is only natural to assume that they murder sometimes too. The average detective in France is probably not an art connoisseur,(probably brought into the city), and as a result, an art historian has to be brought in. She along with the occasional support from her father, who shares her knowledge and pedigrees, must work side by side with homicide to find the culprit behind each heinous crime. In the meantime, one learns more about art and the other about crime.
I love many French actresses but Mlle. Fleurot has a style that I have not seen since Catherine Deneuve. This is not putting any of the other women down, there is just a similar type of elegance and grace that comes with this lady. She appears tall and striking on screen and seems to tower over others. Her presence on camera jumps out at you whenever she appears and you almost forget everyone around her. Her demeanor comes across as a delicate flower, assuming she is a vulnerable woman and yet, there is nothing helpless about her. It is a mixed message that she plays in all of the roles that I have seen her in.
This is a Hungarian film, with a very very long name: Preparations to be Together for an Unknown Period of Time (2021). It is a film that many women can relate to. The man who isn’t who he says he is. The man who cons us into his disguise. The man who is avoidant and we take on the challenge of falling in love with him and gaining his trust and love. Then he turns into another person. He lies. We try to win him back by being persistent and devout. In the movie, this goes in an interesting direction. A very artistic path. Yes, she does get him back in the end. Only, in real life, this rarely happens.
Defeat, my Defeat, my solitude and my aloofness; You are dearer to me than a thousand triumphs, And sweeter to my heart than all world-glory.
Defeat, my Defeat, my self-knowledge and my defiance, Through you I know that I am yet young and swift of foot And not to be trapped by withering laurels. And in you I have found aloneness And the joy of being shunned and scorned.
Defeat, my Defeat, my shining sword and shield, In your eyes I have read That to be enthroned is to be enslaved, And to be understood is to be leveled down, And to be grasped is but to reach one’s fullness And like a ripe fruit to fall and be consumed.
Defeat, my Defeat, my bold companion, You shall hear my songs and my cries and my silences, And none but you shall speak to me of the beating of wings, And urging of seas, And of mountains that burn in the night, And you alone shall climb my steep and rocky soul.
Defeat, my Defeat, my deathless courage, You and I shall laugh together with the storm, And together we shall dig graves for all that die in us, And we shall stand in the sun with a will, And we shall be dangerous.
Yesterday, I sat down to watch nearly three hours of this historic fiction that took place between the 1900’s and 1920. From the onset, there is a clear indication of something bad that is going to happen though we have no idea what it will be until they walk onto the barge. Even then, we don’t really know what is going to happen but we can suspect. You are not watching this movie thinking there will be a happy ending as it is somewhat akin to those who watched the Titanic movie. In 1920, it was the end of the Tsar. The entire family had been assassinated; including little children. The communists were most certainly not very humane in their actions. In the aftermath of annihilating the family, they set about to destroy the lives of their soldiers as well. They did not want one single person left behind from the old regime.
It was shocking to hear that he passed a month ago, as most of his fans had no idea he was dying. As I began to read the obituary in “The Guardian,” mid-way there was a YouTube link for Lazarus which I clicked on to watch. Listening to the first sentence “Look up here, I’m in heaven,” and the chills began to creep up. What an amazing way to say goodbye at the end of your life. At the same time, I began looking at other articles related to his passing and kept hearing Christopher Sandford’s name as the author of what appears to be Bowie’s only biography, entitled “Loving the Alien.” I put myself in queue through Amazon, for this book which was immediately on backorder after his death.
I am a huge fan of the Song of Bernadette with Jennifer Jones (1943). In fact, that movie changed my life spiritually. More recently, I read the non-fiction by Franz Werfel and this moved me even more – his story was included; another miracle from the Lady of Lourdes. I am also a psychotherapist for a living and if a movie is made correctly, I can figure it out from the get go. If you have ever watched the Poirot series by Agatha Christie, recall the scene where he is watching a play with his side kick, Inspector Hastings. Poirot is telling Hastings what will happen but it doesn’t and he is confused why it was written that way. That is me in a nutshell. This was written correctly (spoiler alert!) but the ending was way over the top and unnecessary. It was almost like an American film where they have to make everyone feel good. The ending closed up character plot lines but this could have been done in a dialogue – perhaps with his wife. She needed her husband back!
Raphael Balthazar played by Tomer Sisley, an Israeli-French male, has become my new fascination. I am going to spoil it for you though, but this has not been indicated in the series (at all). My suspicion is and maybe you will prove me wrong, maybe they will, but I think he is the one who killed his wife. At the end of Season 2; there were too many weird things at the ending segment that suddenly made me quite curious. His friend was dead, he was a ghost talking to him and they finally told us another clue – it had to be a doctor. Red Herring of a TV show? We shall find out in Season 3; as Acorn TV has indicated there will be one. Hard to tell with foreign TV.
Monsieur and Madame Adelman, a movie (Kanopy/Roku), starts off with the ending. It is predictable that Madame is going to tell someone at the funeral her life story. This is the last time you can be pretty sure of what is going to happen, well, until the
ending that explains the ending. At this point, the characters personalities have been built and so one can trust the obvious. As she begins to tell her story, which begins in the 1970’s, it seems as if this will be a typical love story. You can imagine this, though from the onset, Madame comes across as a cynical woman. She is begging you to pay attention. What comes across to the viewer are exceptional performances from Doria Tillier and Nicolas Bedos (he also wrote the score for the film, directed it and they both wrote the screenplay). Or did she, while he supervised? This is an inside joke from the film.