Wednesday, November 07, 2007

La Souriante Madame Beudet (Germaine Dulac, 1923)

****½
France


Regularly cited as the first feminist film, Germain Dulac's domestic drama was also one of first to take in a woman's point of view. Through various primitive trick effects (slow motion, superimposition etc.), it depicts Madame Beudet's dreams, fantasies and neuroses as she experiences them subjectively. Its enduring value however, doesn't lie in any insight it offers into the oppressed woman's state of mind - since it doesn't, really - but in the delicate, evocative beauty of its images.

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