Therese Desqueyroux TIFF 2012 Review

Posted 10 years ago by myetvmedia

French Director Claude Miller’s Farewell

One of France’s most beloved and acclaimed filmmakers, Claude Miller, died in April, a month before his latest film was set to close the 2012 Cannes Film FestivalThérèse Desqueyroux, is based onFrançois Mauriac’s famous novel and stars Audrey Tautou.

Miller directed 17 gripping and entertaining feature films that often provided dark insights into the human psyche. To name a few: La Meilleure Façon de Marcher (The Best Way to Walk) 1976; La Petite Voleuse (The Little Thief) 1988; La Classe de Neige (Class Trip) 1998; Un Secret (A Secret) 2007, Je Suis Heureux que Ma Mère Soit Vivante (I’m Glad My Mother Is Alive) 2009, co-directed with Nathan Miller; Mortelle Randonnée (Deadly Circuit) 1983; L’Effrontée 1985; Betty Fisher et Autres Histoires (Alias Betty) 2001; La Petite Lili (Little Lili) 2003; Marching Band, 2009 documentary.

Claude Miller’s elegant last film is a thought-provoking drama. It’s maturely composed, with a controlled approach and a traditional narrative style. Based on a real-life incident and novel, the film takes place at the end of the 1920s not far from Bordeaux in the Landes region (mainly populated by pine wood forests). Two of the richest families in the area are to be united when Therese Larroque (Audrey Tautou) marries Bernard Desqueyroux (Gilles Lellouche), the brother of her best friend, Anne (Anais Demoustier). In the Landes, they arrange marriages to combine the land and unite families. But the young married Thérèse Desqueyroux has avant-garde ideas and does want to be confine to the conventions rooted in the region. She releases the destiny imposed on her, and she will try everything to live life to the fullest even if she must resort to poisoning her husband with overdoses of arsenic laced medicine (Fowler’s Solution). Her actions are part of an “imperceptible slope”, caused in part by the pressures of motherhood and marriage and the stifling life of a Catholic landowner’s wife in 1920s rural France.


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Therese Desqueyroux TIFF 2012 Review

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