A Lady in Paris
PRODS Miléna Poylo, Gilles Sacuto, Riina Sildos
SCR Agnès Feuvre, Lise Macheboeuf, Ilmar Raag
CAM Laurent Brunet
ED Anne-Laure Guégan
PROD DES Pascale Consigny
PROD CO TS Productions / Amrion / La Parti Productions
Still beautiful, still imperious, still an actor to her finger tips, Jeanne Moreau, doyenne of French cinema, here dominates the screen as she has for the last 50 years.
The story opens in Estonia where Anne (the perfectly cast Laine Mägi) looks after her mother. When she dies, Anne moves to Paris to care for an elderly Estonian lady. Her charge is Frida (Moreau) an intolerably cantankerous woman who has just attempted to take her own life. The man who hired Anne is café owner Stéphane (the excellent Patrick Pineau) whom we initially believe is Frida’s son, but is, in fact, a former lover. In this beautifully understated story two things ensue: firstly, despite all Frida’s tantrums and Anne’s desire to leave, an unsteady relationship forms; secondly, as the film unfolds, so does Frida’s history.
Themes of memory, love, loss and death are delicately interwoven in Ilmar Raag’s beautifully observed work. There are no grand statements; all is nuance, asides, silences. Every aspect of the film’s making is of the highest quality. But above all, throughout the film, we have before us Moreau’s astonishing face, her enormous talent in no way dimmed by her 85 years. A Lady in Paris can be seen as Moreau’s response to Emmanuelle Riva’s majestic performance in Amour and it’s one of her best. Don’t miss it!