Last Year at Marienbad (1961)

Genres - Avant-garde / Experimental  |   Sub-Genres - Surrealist Film, Psychological Drama  |   Run Time - 93 min.  |   Countries - France, Italy  |  
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A cinematic puzzle, Alain Resnais' Last Year at Marienbad is a radical exploration of the formal possibilities of film. Beautifully shot in Cinemascope by Sacha Vierny, the movie is a riddle of seduction, a mercurial enigma darting between a present and past which may not even exist, let alone converge. The film stars Giorgio Albertazzi as an unnamed sophisticate attempting to convince a similarly nameless woman (Delphine Seyrig) that they met and were romantically involved a year ago in the same enormous, baroque European hotel. In the end, it hardly matters -- they're not characters so much as pawns anyway. Hypnotically dreamlike, Last Year at Marienbad is a surrealist parody of Hollywood melodrama, a high-fashion romance with a dark, alien underbelly. According to screenwriter Alain Robbe-Grillet, the movie is a pure construction, without a frame of reference outside of its own existence -- the lives of its characters begin when the lights go down, and conclude when they come back up.

Characteristics

Moods

Keywords

extramarital-affair, love, motel, obsession

Attributes

High Artistic Quality, High Historical Importance