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BLANCHE

France, 1970 (MIFF 1972)

Director: Walerian Borowczyk

The second live feature of noted Polish director of animated films, Walerian Borowczyk, is a bizarre and beautiful re &ndash: creation of a series of events that take place in a medieval castle.

A 13th century lord leads a peaceful, isolated existence in his castle, together with his virtuous young wife, Blanche, and his son by a previous marriage. When the King and his womanising page come to stay in the castle, both are captivated by Blanche's inaccessible beauty and turn all their efforts to seducing her.

The film moves from comic charm into a chain reaction of passions, both sublime and cruel, which disrupts the castle life.

Blanche is a free adaptation of Juliusz Slowacki's romantic drama, "Mazepa" —a story of love fighting and struggling to remain pure amid the confusion of jealousy, pettiness and misunderstanding. Without making any allusions to current problems, and remaining within its period, the film makes a more universal statement, true of any age, about innocence destroyed by man's own weaknesses.

“There is the music of the time, a well chosen castle, extraordinary costuming and a simplicity in language, that make this tale both comic and dramatic portent charming, ingratiating, and finally moving, as violence and death break into this mannered chateau life.

“Full of manners, the drama and the courtly intrigues of the time, it is a beguiling, hypnotically fascinating film...” Mosk in Variety

See also...

GOTO, ISLAND OF LOVE

France, 1968
Goto, an island formed after an earthquake in the 19th century has been cut off from the mainstream of social progress and survives as a totalitarian world of concrete corridors, iron trapdoors and o… More »

School

Poland, 1958
A Polish experimental fantasy about a soldier being trained in military exercises. He does not wear the uniform of any specific nation and the time of action is indefinite. ... More »

The Concert of Mr. and Mrs. Kabal

France, 1962
A stylised and macabre satire of a piano recital by Mrs Kabal which is so ruined by her husbands interruptions that she exacts a fearful revenge. ... More »

Renaissance

France, 1963
A revolutionary animated film 'The principal hero is the unity of objects, or more exactly their move­ment in space and time". ... Plaque, Tours Festival. ... More »

Les Jeux des Anges

France, 1964
A nightmarish journey into an undefined hell. Through its dynamic blend of formalism and suggestion, the film succeeds in giving the spectator one of the strangest and most overwhelming of aesthetic … More »

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