REVIEW / FILM REVIEW – We saw “Les Amours d’Anaïs” by Charline Bourgeois-Tacquet, a nice variation on the theme of the love triangle with a very nice performance by Anaïs Demoustier. A first film which testifies to a precious artistic harmony between the two women, and which calls for others.
The Loves of Anaïs : so close and far from the genre
We must admit, we already know, Anaïs Demoustier is a formidable actress. But has she ever been so? Anaïs, it is also the first name of his character, is a tornado. A young woman, barely thirty, who runs, who whirls, who loves without restraint, smiles at everything, never looks back on yesterday. To hell with the melancholy, the contemplation, the languor in which French auteur cinema, one could even say romantic cinema, sometimes takes too much pleasure. Charline Bourgeois-Tacquet’s film The Loves of Anaïs, in many ways, is almost to be put in a brand new genre which would be the love action movie.
Anaïs works a little in publishing, but she’s upside down, she has a thesis on her hands that she never ends and a lover she runs away from, seemingly like nothing. What Anaïs loves is the amorous passion, the desire, the speed, the encounters in the environment in which she lives, that in this case of literate Paris. She first meets by chance Daniel (Denis Podalydès), a renowned publisher, with whom she has an affair. But she quickly discovers, before meeting her, his wife Émilie, a writer. These two women do not live at the same pace, are not at the same time of their lives, but their mutual attraction will quickly become an obsessive and revealing passion.
Run, dance and love
From a Paris that overwhelms her and threatens to suffocate her, where she is an object of desire, Anaïs goes to Brittany for a literary colloquium with the sole aim of meeting Emilie. Anaïs goes fast, she runs fast, runs up the stairs, and she loves quickly, fully, intensely, too bad for those who do not follow her rhythm, her first lover of the film and then Daniel, who does not keep up. Desired in Paris but evading it, she becomes desirous in the countryside of Guingamp, fascinated and under Emilie’s solar spell. We follow Anaïs and we don’t want to let her go, even if it means passing her all her little lies, her breaches of decorum and her egoism, the latter being too beneficial for her to be really criticized.
What will calm his course, slow down his pretty frenzy, is his meeting with Émilie where a calm is emerging, a peace of hearts and bodies staged with grace by Charline Bourgeois-Tacquet. One of the qualities of the film The Loves of Anaïs is that, while being part of themes and codes seen from Marivaux to Rohmer and Desplechin, inspirations assumed, it is perfectly modern, with a pronounced attraction for the game and without the taste of dust that tints often this kind. It is admirable in itself, and it is all the more so for a first feature film.
Still formidable is the relationship between an actress who still confirms her talent and her status, and a director who reveals herself brilliantly. A true muse for Charline Bourgeois-Tacquet, the latter seems to have found in Anaïs Demoustier the key to a thousand cinema doors. After his short film Pauline enslaved, which testified to a nascent artistic relationship, the director sublimates her actress and she makes her feel good by twirling her film.
A first film that masters its ambition
Valeria Bruni-Tedeschi is also perfectly fair, with this character of a writer where one reads a sweet melancholy, a form of superior restraint without being arrogant, the holder of a life experience that Anaïs has not yet. Nevertheless in their relationship, sublimated by a very successful physical love streak, there is a form of anomaly, an impossibility that will bring a final touch of moving gravity to the film. But this gravity, rather than resignation or sadness, would rather be the revelation of a higher love. There is there, without opposition to the masculine, a celebration of the feminine, a highlighting of a unique bond of which the contemplation is happy. And we find in these two sequences a very beautiful cinematographic intention, for a film which in addition does not seem – some will think with regret – to worry about it too much.
While the film could have kept its rhythm very removed from its first part, relying on its comedic situations and sticking to it, it evolves towards more depth in its second part. And because he always manages to escape the futile trap that lies in his path, The loves…