Tuesday, June 19, 2018

A Duel of the Sun and the Moon

Duelle (1976) - Rivette
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Duelle tells the fate of earthlings trapped in the battle between Leni (Juliette Berto), the Moon Goddess and Viva (Bulle Ogier), the Sun Goddess. It just gives an excuse for Berto and Ogier, the mother-daughter team, strut around in various pretty costumes and seducing anyone whom they lay their eyes on. Their objective is finding a diamond the size of a peach pit so they can stay on earth or something. Embroiled in this cat and mouse chase are a cat-like hunk Pierrot (Jean Babilée), his snooping, late night hotel clerk sister Lucie (Hermine Karagheuz), love-lorn Jeanne/Elsa (Nicole Garcia) and others.

Just like Celine and Julie, guided and framed by the great William Lubtchansky, Duelle has a fluidity of an improvisational music (not jam but more like jazz). With never obtrusive handheld camera work and black and white sequence thrown in, the film is not short on cinematic playfulness. The ensemble cast seems to be having a blast too. Good times.

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