Reviews

The Max Ophuls Collection

5

“A shot that does not call for tracks,” quipped James Mason, “is agony for poor dear Max...” Powered by the merry-go-round metaphor of his exquisite, swirling camerawork, Max Ophüls’ sad, seductive movies are one of cinema’s great pleasures, elegantly pirouetting in the void between idealised love and the dark despair of reality. A huge event, then, to see four of mighty Max’s greatest hitting DVD for the first time. Mason stars in supreme noir The Reckless Moment (Todd Haynes video intro, critic’s commentary), but the masterpiece of Ophüls’ Hollywood era is Letter From An Unknown Woman (film historian video-essay), the tragic epic of a woman destroyed by her life-long passion for a pianist to whom she means nothing. Short-story trio Le Plaisir (Haynes intro, doc, featurette) and the sublime infidelities of Madame De... (video-essay, interview with director Alain Jessua) form two more seats on Ophüls’ carousel of doom and dazzle.

 

Film Details

  • PG
  • UK Theatrical Release Date: September 18th 2006

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