program

FILMS

India Song

74 films in 13 categories
Marguerite Duras
France
114'


1975
Photo Film

V.O.

French

subtitles

English, Romanian

producer


Original Title

India Song

CATEGORY

WARM-UP DELPHINE SEYRIG


synopsis

Marguerite Duras used to say that she took refuge in her activity as a filmmaker when she didn’t have the necessary inspiration to write literature. At first glance, this affirmation might suggest a hierarchization of the two modes of expression, yet Duras’ filmography refutes this point of view: on the contrary, words become reinvigorated by their contact and sometimes by their collision with the image. In “India Song,” the lack of action and the primacy of the word tend to leave the impression of a downright literary film, of a message which got lost in another medium than the one it was destined for. The narrative, conveyed through images, limits itself to the context of a reception, held at the French ambassador’s residence in Calcutta, which becomes the stage of passions developing around the wife of the host, played by Delphine Seyrig. The story evolves in the soundscape of the film - made exclusively of ambiances and off-screen voices, with no direct lines - and it is labyrinthine, giving access to what could very well be the thoughts of the characters, a form of commentary on events which actually ended, and which we would see reenacted on screen, or the meditations of the author’s many voices. The relationship between the two levels is as mysterious, as the one between the image and the intellectual content of the discourse is raw and sensual: the passion depicted through words is embodied by way of the diffuse light, the suffocating space, the actors’ bodies touching each other in slow motion. At the end, we are left with a strange sensation: a melancholic excitation, an energy which nonetheless doesn’t prompt towards action, but towards contemplation. (Liri Alienor Chapelan)

awards and festivals

Locarno International Film Festival 2020

Cannes Film Festival 2006
César Awards 1976
Faro Island Film Festival 1975 - Golden Train Award
Cannes Film Festival 1975
Locarno International Film Festival 1975
International Film Festival Rotterdam 1975
New York Film Festival 1975

POSTER

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