Eric Rohmer Films
Eric Rohmer is a connoisseur's treat. His final feature The Romance of Astrea and Celadon (2007) was seen by many as an eccentric, atypical swan song. But while it may have been set in 5th-century Gaul, it tackles the romantic longings and confusions of impossibly beautiful young people with the same wit and acuity that Rohmer brought to his celebrated series, Six Moral... [+]
Eric Rohmer is a connoisseur's treat. His final feature The Romance of Astrea and Celadon (2007) was seen by many as an eccentric, atypical swan song. But while it may have been set in 5th-century Gaul, it tackles the romantic longings and confusions of impossibly beautiful young people with the same wit and acuity that Rohmer brought to his celebrated series, Six Moral Tales (1963–72), Comedies and Proverbs (1980–86) and Tales of the Four Seasons (1989–98), not to mention his other incisive adaptations.
Born in Nancy, Jean-Marie Maurice Schérer published the novel Elizabeth (1946) under the name Gilbert Cordier before adopting a second pseudonym that amalgamated actor-director Erich Von Stroheim and pulp novelist, Sax Rohmer. In 1950, he co-founded Gazette du Cinéma with Jacques Rivette and Jean-Luc Godard and the latter starred in his 1951 film, Présentation ou Charlotte et son Steak. Abandoning his first feature, Rohmer began writing for Cahiers du Cinéma in 1951 and edited the influential journal from 1957-63, during which time he co-wrote the first critical study of Alfred Hitchcock, with Claude Chabrol.
Rohmer's literary background has prompted many to dismiss his films as static chatfests, stuffed with what Pauline Kael called `seriocomic triviality'. Indeed, Arthur Penn (the American director perhaps most obviously inspired by the nouvelle vague) even had Gene Hackman's jaded detective aver in Night Moves (1975): `I saw a Rohmer film once. It was kind of like watching paint dry.'
But Rohmer denies that his pictures are verbose and philosophically pompous or that his characters are self-obsessed losers. `I do not say, I show,' he insisted in one rare interview. `I show people who move and speak.' Indeed, Eric Rohmer makes films that are truer to life than almost any others, as what do most humans do but talk about themselves?
As he once explained: `The people in my films are not expressing abstract ideas - there is no “ideology” in them, or very little - but revealing what they think about relationships between men and women, about friendship, love, desire, their conception of life, happiness…boredom, work, leisure…Things which have, of course, been spoken about previously in the cinema, but usually indirectly, in the context of a dramatic plot.'
Thus, whether they're inexperienced males torn between two lovers (My Night at Maud's, 1969 & Claire's Knee, 1970), ingénues finding their romantic feet (Pauline at the Beach, 1983 & Full Moon in Paris, 1984) or older women seizing the day before it's too late (The Green Ray, 1986 & An Autumn Tale, 1998), Rohmer's features are filled with fascinatingly flawed individuals who have positioned themselves at the centre of their own little worlds and then realised that they have to compromise in order to experience the love they crave. [-]
Eric Rohmer Film Listing
Six short nouvelle vague films about Paris by six French directors, including Godard, Chabrol, Ro...
Eric Rohmer, 1972
A collection bringing together all six of the late, great French filmmaker's film...
Eric Rohmer, 1972-87
This box set showcases eight of Eric Rohmer's key films, including all six of his...
Eric Rohmer, 1998
The last of the tales of the Four Seasons and arguably the best, it unfolds during a glorious Ind...
Eric Rohmer, 2004
Based on true events, Rohmer's latest is a compelling tale of intrigue set against the political ...
Eric Rohmer, 2007
Contains The Romance of Astrea & Celadon, Triple Agent, The Sign of Leo and Rende...
Eric Rohmer, 1992
Hairdresser Felicie has a passionate affair with Charles while on holiday. Four y...
Eric Rohmer, 1994
A sensitive young woman searches for companionship and her ideal man on her summer holiday. Perfe...
Eric Rohmer, 1990
The first in Rohmer's 'Four Seasons' cycle, where he shows how simple good cinema can be. We are ...
Eric Rohmer, 2001
Rohmer's magisterial adaptation of the memoirs of a courageous, well-connected British aristocrat...