Philippe GarrelFrance98 minutes1991ColourFrench
Winner of the Silver Lion at the Venice Film Festival, this semi-autobiographical portrait of Garrel's ill-fated, decade-long relationship with the iconic singer Nico is a film about "surviving youth, surviving in an age where everything you stood for, believed in, dreamed of, has been crushed," in the words of Garrel admirer Olivier Assayas. Gérard (Benoît Régent) and his German lover Marianne (Johanna ter Steege) are lovers whose tumultuous relationship gradually leads them into the barrens of heroin addiction. After the couple drifts apart, Gérard eventually enters into a relationship with the considerably more stable Aline (played by Garrel's wife Brigette Sy); but when Marianne re-enters his life, he is torn between his supportive family and his still-powerful connection to his volatile ex-lover. "Raw, rueful, and piercingly alert, a film of tremendous formal instinct and cogent human truth" (Nathan Lee, Village Voice); "Garrel's greatest and toughest film" (Kent Jones, Film Comment).