(out of 5)
Eric Rohmer’s final film looks to a sixteenth century source for a familiar fairy tale of love thwarted. Set in a bucolic countryside populated by shepherds and touched by enchantment, it tells of a young man who loves a young woman, but when she believes him to have been untrue with another she rejects him. He throws himself into the river but, instead of drowning, is rescued by nymphs who nurse him back to health. The pure-hearted simplicity of Rohmer’s best films doesn’t keep you riveted to the screen here; the actors are terrific, fully committed to the human types they are playing without a shred of irony, but the beautiful settings and lovely costumes do nothing to make it memorable and it’s something of a chore to sit through. Die hard devotees of the great auteur will probably like it more than others.
Directed by Eric Rohmer
Adaptation by Eric Rohmer, based on the novel L’Astree by Honore D’Urfe
Cinematography by Diane Baratier
Produced by Francoise Etchegaray
Music by Jean-Louis Valéro
Film Editing by Mary Stephen