Life Is a Bed of Roses

111 minutes

Alain Resnais, continuing in the playful/didactic mode of Mon oncle d'Amerique. A pedagogical conference, held in a whimsical castle in the French countryside, is intercut with flashes back to the revels of the original proprietor, a 19th-century visionary who uses his society friends in perception-altering experiments. Hard to recognize here the director of Hiroshima, mon amour and Last Year at Marienbad: the material manages at once to be both precious and dry, the staging is unprofitably claustrophobic, and the structure less ingenious than arbitrary. With Geraldine Chaplin, Fanny Ardant, Vittorio Gassman, and Sabine Azema.

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