Autumn Tale (1998, Eric Rohmer)

Last of the Four Seasons, and the only one I had to watch at home (in HD, at least) since I missed the theatrical screening. Still a total pleasure. Maybe the happiest of the four, with no heartbreaking decisions to make, just a will-they-or-won’t-they with a couple that’s obviously good for each other.


Actually there’s a bit of craziness in the middle, when Isabelle reveals to the man she’s dating that she’s actually married. Isabelle (Marie Rivière, star of The Green Ray and The Aviator’s Wife) has posted a personals ad and attracted Gerald (Alain Libolt of Lady and the Duke, also thief Renaud of Out 1), then after screening him on a few outings, she admits she was acting on a friend’s behalf – prickly vineyard owner Magali (Béatrice Romand of A Good Marriage and Claire’s Knee) who is lonely but refuses to go looking for love.

Gerald & Isabelle:

Magali finally meets Gerald at Isabelle’s daughter Emilia’s wedding, where, not knowing of Isabelle’s plot, Rosine (Magali’s son’s girlfriend) also tries to hook her professor ex-boyfriend up with Magali. That fails immediately – after all the build-up, the two spend about thirty seconds together then the professor wanders off to talk with younger women. Magali misunderstands the Gerald situation and runs off angrily, then she and Gerald return to the wedding looking for each other, and all is well.

Rosine introduces Magali to the professor:

Interesting that all three leads are Rohmer regulars, since the other movies were mostly cast with unknowns. Maybe the Béatrice Romand-starring A Good Marriage should be my next Rohmer, since she was such fun to watch in this movie. This played at Venice alongside Run Lola Run, New Rose Hotel and Black Cat White Cat, winning best screenplay.