HOME |  CULT MOVIES | COMPETITIONS | ADVERTISE |  CONTACT US |  ABOUT US
 
 
 
Newest Reviews
American Fiction
Poor Things
Thunderclap
Zeiram
Legend of the Bat
Party Line
Night Fright
Pacha, Le
Kimi
Assemble Insert
Venus Tear Diamond, The
Promare
Beauty's Evil Roses, The
Free Guy
Huck and Tom's Mississippi Adventure
Rejuvenator, The
Who Fears the Devil?
Guignolo, Le
Batman, The
Land of Many Perfumes
Cat vs. Rat
Tom & Jerry: The Movie
Naked Violence
Joyeuses Pacques
Strangeness, The
How I Became a Superhero
Golden Nun
Incident at Phantom Hill
Winterhawk
Resident Evil: Welcome to Raccoon City
Maigret Sets a Trap
B.N.A.
Hell's Wind Staff, The
Topo Gigio and the Missile War
Battant, Le
Penguin Highway
Cazadore de Demonios
Snatchers
Imperial Swordsman
Foxtrap
   
 
Newest Articles
3 From Arrow Player: Sweet Sugar, Girls Nite Out and Manhattan Baby
Little Cat Feat: Stephen King's Cat's Eye on 4K UHD
La Violence: Dobermann at 25
Serious Comedy: The Wrong Arm of the Law on Blu-ray
DC Showcase: Constantine - The House of Mystery and More on Blu-ray
Monster Fun: Three Monster Tales of Sci-Fi Terror on Blu-ray
State of the 70s: Play for Today Volume 3 on Blu-ray
The Movie Damned: Cursed Films II on Shudder
The Dead of Night: In Cold Blood on Blu-ray
Suave and Sophisticated: The Persuaders! Take 50 on Blu-ray
Your Rules are Really Beginning to Annoy Me: Escape from L.A. on 4K UHD
A Woman's Viewfinder: The Camera is Ours on DVD
Chaplin's Silent Pursuit: Modern Times on Blu-ray
The Ecstasy of Cosmic Boredom: Dark Star on Arrow
A Frosty Reception: South and The Great White Silence on Blu-ray
You'll Never Guess Which is Sammo: Skinny Tiger and Fatty Dragon on Blu-ray
Two Christopher Miles Shorts: The Six-Sided Triangle/Rhythm 'n' Greens on Blu-ray
Not So Permissive: The Lovers! on Blu-ray
Uncomfortable Truths: Three Shorts by Andrea Arnold on MUBI
The Call of Nostalgia: Ghostbusters Afterlife on Blu-ray
Moon Night - Space 1999: Super Space Theater on Blu-ray
Super Sammo: Warriors Two and The Prodigal Son on Blu-ray
Sex vs Violence: In the Realm of the Senses on Blu-ray
What's So Funny About Brit Horror? Vampira and Bloodbath at the House of Death on Arrow
Keeping the Beatles Alive: Get Back
   
 
  Parfum d'Yvonne, Le Aroma-nce
Year: 1994
Director: Patrice Leconte
Stars: Jean-Pierre Marielle, Hippolyte Girardot, Sandra Majani, Richard Bohringer, Paul Guers, Corinne Marchand, Philippe Magnan, Claude Derepp
Genre: Drama, Sex, RomanceBuy from Amazon
Rating:  8 (from 1 vote)
Review: Hoping to make sense of a tragic past, a young man (Hippolyte Girardot) remembers an idyllic summer in 1958. On the shores of Lake Geneva, whilst posing as a Russian count named Victor to avoid the Algerian war, he fell madly in love with a bewitchingly beautiful free-spirit named Yvonne (Sandra Majani). Whilst pursuing her dream to become an actress, Yvonne shares a series of carefree erotic adventures with Victor, alongside their companion Dr. Rene Meinthe (Jean-Pierre Marielle), an ageing, flamboyant but secretly self-loathing homosexual. Just as Victor appears on the verge of settling down happily with his beloved Yvonne, the bubble bursts on their dreamy reverie.

Another languid and mysterious tale of romantic obsession from Patrice Leconte, Le Parfum d’Yvonne strikes a tone midway between the bittersweet whimsy of The Hairdresser’s Husband (1990) and the bleak melancholia of Monsieur Hire (1989, with a sting in the tail that provokes real heartache. Rather like Marcel Proust’s Remembrance of Things Past, the film is essentially a dreamlike journey into memory as trigged by the senses, or indeed sensuality, shifting between past and present with only a change in colour scheme from hazy golden nostalgia to burnished autumnal reality signifying which is which. The cinematography by Eduardo Serra is exquisite and embodies a dream vision of Fifties chic: sleek vintage automobiles, bright gingham dresses, pastel coloured cocktails, a silvery moon dancing across the midnight blue.

Beneath the elegant and erotic surface lurks a troubling sense of tragedy in waiting and the film derives its power from the constant tension between the two moods. Leconte is proven master at elegant sensuality. Few filmmakers are as adept at gently teasing the subtle, scintillating details that add up to an unforgettable erotic encounter. The sight of Yvonne caressing one smooth, suntanned leg against Victor under the breakfast table packs more punch than any overwrought hump-a-thon scripted by Joe Ezsterhas. In what remains astonishingly her only movie role, Sandra Majani mesmerizes on screen, radiating a vibrant, intelligent sexiness in her playful mind games with Victor, played to suave perfection by a sublime Hippolyte Girardot.

We sense that both lovers are acting out a role rather than revealing their true selves - she, the enticing femme fatale, he, the smooth seducer - and risk spoiling the fantasy. The film contrasts their shared erotic bliss with Rene’s melancholy resignation at growing old and embittered. These characters aim to live in the moment, to live life at its fullest, something Leconte depicts as simultaneously heroic and an exercise in futility. We admire these characters for their spontaneity, maybe even envy their lifestyle, but also lament their tragic inability to ride out the autumnal moments in life. What the film ultimately argues is that true maturity stems from an ability to accept the lows as well as the highs in life. One cannot exist in a state of perpetual bliss. Time moves on and unless people do too, they are left with only fond memories behind. But just like our intoxicating anti-heroine, sure looks sweet while it lasts.

Click here to watch a clip

Reviewer: Andrew Pragasam

 

This review has been viewed 3165 time(s).

As a member you could Rate this film

 
Review Comments (0)


Untitled 1

Login
  Username:
 
  Password:
 
   
 
Forgotten your details? Enter email address in Username box and click Reminder. Your details will be emailed to you.
   

Latest Poll
Which star probably has psychic powers?
Laurence Fishburne
Nicolas Cage
Anya Taylor-Joy
Patrick Stewart
Sissy Spacek
Michelle Yeoh
Aubrey Plaza
Tom Cruise
Beatrice Dalle
Michael Ironside
   
 
   

Recent Visitors
Enoch Sneed
  Louise Hackett
Darren Jones
Mark Le Surf-hall
Andrew Pragasam
Mary Sibley
Graeme Clark
  Desbris M
   

 

Last Updated: