My Nights Are More Beautiful Than Your Days (1989)

Genres - Drama, Romance  |   Sub-Genres - Psychological Drama, Erotic Drama  |   Release Date - Nov 11, 1989 (USA - Unknown)  |   Run Time - 110 min.  |   Countries - France  |   MPAA Rating - NR
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Review by Yuri German

The title is taken from the best-selling romantic novel by Raphaële Billetdoux (published in English as Night Without Day in 1987) about the three nights spent by a chance couple in a hotel by the sea. However, except the names of the protagonists and the basic plot line, the film doesn't follow the source too closely. The novelist had her name removed from the credits since she felt that the director took too many liberties with her work. Indeed, Andrzej Zulawski is prone to extremes, and there are enough of them in this film: the nymphomaniac mother, homosexual husband, and a ragged bunch of drug addicts, lesbians and other colorful characters yelling at each other in a cloud of cocaine. It seems like they were transposed here from Zulawski's previous picture, L'Amour Braque, and they look strangely out of place in this lyrical and almost meditative film built on a play of words, glances, and faint gestures. It's Jacques Dutronc's outstanding performance that holds the picture together. This role marked his triumphant return after virtually abandoning cinema in the mid-'80s. His character is like a contemporary version of Dostoyevsky's Prince Myshkin, the last romantic hero lost in the labyrinth of the modern world where Blanche becomes his Ariadne with a saving thread. There is some affinity between the doomed protagonist and the director himself -- who stubbornly makes highly personal art films in the era of special effects-laden blockbusters.