Love on the Ground | Chicago Reader

Love on the Ground

126 minutes

Another of Jacques Rivette's airy formal riddles, involving role-playing artifice, Borges-like fantasy, and suggestions of the magical in a world that resists decoding (1984). Three actors (Geraldine Chaplin, Jane Birkin, Facundo Bo) gather to perform a playwright's work in an old, exotic mansion (the wallpaper interiors suggest Larry Poons run riot), but soon find life and theatricality revising each other strangely. The shaggy story line hangs on the iconographic contrasts of the female leads: Birkin sinuous and wandering, Chaplin slight, gamin, and precious (it's not the first time Rivette's located narrative in the physical and feminine). Unfortunately, not enough of it comes together, and Rivette's playful openness sometimes results only in playful tedium. In French with subtitles.

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