Iconic French director Eric Rohmer has (finally!) been celebrated with two of his most renowned films: Full Moon in Paris and The Marquise of O. Both have been released by Film Movement Classics.
Originally released in 1984 to universal acclaim, Full Moon in Paris was heralded as “a small masterpiece” and “the very best of Rohmer” by The New York Times. The story of Louise (portrayed by Pascale Ogier), a young interior designer bored with her life in the sleepy suburbs with her live-in boyfriend Remi, and eager to lead the life of an independent socialite in the city, Louise arranges to move back into her Paris apartment during the week.
Balancing a steady boyfriend in the suburbs with a best friend, Octave (Fabrice Luchini), who makes plain his interest in her, and a bad boy musician who catches her eye at a party, eventually even the sophisticated and aloof Louise cannot untangle herself from the emotional realities of her various romantic encounters. Decades after first impressing critics and audiences alike, Full Moon in Paris remains a modern, wry observation of youth and love.
Already an established filmmaker by the 1976 release of The Marquise of O, an adaptation of Heinrich von Kleist’s classic short story, the film stands as Rohmer’s “dazzling testament to the civilizing effects of several different arts, witty, joyous and so beautiful to look at” (The New York Times). Winner of the Special Jury Prize at the Cannes Film Festival that year, Rohmer’s film is set in 1799 during the Russian invasion of Italy. A young widow, The Marquise (Edith Clever) lives with her parents; her father is the commander of a citadel embroiled in battle. With the fort overrun by Russians, the Marquise is abducted by a group of rowdy soldiers and nearly taken advantage of when the Russian commander Count F (Bruno Ganz) appears as if from nowhere to rescue her.
Later, the Marquise realizes she is pregnant, though she cannot decipher how the circumstance came to be. The Marquise’s scandalized parents banish her to their country estate, where she pens a letter to the newspaper announcing that she will marry the father, whomever he may be, should he only present himself.