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July 2001, Week 2


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sarah nichols <[log in to unmask]>
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Film and TV Studies Discussion List <[log in to unmask]>
Thu, 12 Jul 2001 10:47:40 -0700
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 A few films come immeadiately to mind: UNDER THE SAND (SOUS LE SABLE),  and in a less obvious way, Truffaut's THE STORY OF ADELE H. It is, of course, a rigorous portrait of obsession, but perhaps this emerges from the grief of an unfulfilled and unrequited love. Adele never moves on. The same might be said about the protagonist of Parajanov's SHADOWS OF FORGOTTEN ANCESTORS. He grieves for his beloved, ignoring his living wife and numbly moving through his existence. There is an extraordinary sequence (filmed through a blue filter) that eloquently shows the effects of how life drains away after a loved one's death. I am also tempted to mention VERTIGO as another example of mis-directed grief that implodes into an obsession.

Perhaps this isn't relevant here, but there are also those films which are elegies for the past (or a way of life that has passed on).  Two powerful expressions of this can be found in Welles' MAGNIFICENT AMBERSONS and CHIMES AT MIDNIGHT. Visconti's ROCCO AND HIS BROTHERS also expresses a longing for what has been left behind to pursue what is hoped will be a better life in Milan. The family matriarch says throughout the film that she wishes that they had never come to the city. Might these not also be expressions of grief?

Sarah Nichols

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