In Memoriam 1942 – 2013 “Roger Ebert loved movies.”

RogerEbert.com

Thumb_if-you-don-t-i-will

If You Don't, I Will

What happens to a marriage once the early ardor cools? That's the central question in this likable drama starring Mathieu Amalric and Emmanuelle Devos as…

Other Reviews
Review Archives
Thumb_xbepftvyieurxopaxyzgtgtkwgw

Ballad of Narayama

"The Ballad of Narayama" is a Japanese film of great beauty and elegant artifice, telling a story of startling cruelty. What a space it opens…

Thumb_jrluxpegcv11ostmz1fqha1bkxq

Monsieur Hire

Patrice Leconte's "Monsieur Hire" is a tragedy about loneliness and erotomania, told about two solitary people who have nothing else in common. It involves a…

Other Reviews
Great Movie Archives
Other Articles
Channel Archives

Reviews

Galia

  |  

Georges Lautner's "Galia" opens and closes with arty shots of the ocean, mother of us all, but in between it's pretty clear that what is washing ashore is the French New Wave.

Ever since the memorable "Breathless" (1960) and "Jules and Jim," and the less memorable "La Verite," we have been treated to a parade of young French girls running gaily toward the camera in slow motion, their hair waving in the wind in just such a way that we know immediately they are liberated, carefree, jolly and doomed.

Poor Galia is another. Played by the passingly attractive Mireille Darc, she comes to Paris from the provinces, becomes a window dresser, joins a Bohemian crowd and lives, naturally, in a penthouse apartment on the Left Bank.

It might have been interesting to learn how Galia pays the rent on her salary but, alas, Lautner has a more significant plot for us. Galia rescues a would-be suicide from the Seine, takes her home and cares for her, and discovers that the hapless woman is unloved by her husband.

The gallant Galia volunteers to spy on the husband, and does so at an orgy, three dinner dates and a weekend in Venice. Lautner's photography is splendid in some of the Venetian scenes, and Galia's inevitable seduction there is handled with a certain amount of humor and grace.

But all good things have an end, and the last section of the film is given over to psychological hanky-panky a la Hitchcock. The abandoned wife, declared legally dead, gives Galia an opportunity to push her back into the river. But Galia cannot and the wife, in gratitude, murders her husband to save Galia from his beastliness. It all goes to show you.

Popular Blog Posts

Who do you read? Good Roger, or Bad Roger?

This message came to me from a reader named Peter Svensland. He and a fr...

10 Underrated Female Performances of 2014

Ten underrated female performances from 2014 worthy of Oscar consideration.

The Ten Best Films of 2014

The ten best films of 2014, as chosen by the film critics of RogerEbert.com.

Netflix’s “Marco Polo” Ends Creatively Disappointing Year For the Company

A review of Netflix's "Marco Polo" and commentary on how the company is treading water when they should be creatively...

Reveal Comments
comments powered by Disqus