The topicality of ethnic cleansing, forced emigration and government-inspired re-immigration colours our view of the history of Lorraine. Pictures of imposing Koblenz that lies where the Mosselle and the Rhine meet. An old map from 1870 indicating the positions of the Prussian and French armies around Metz. The music of Haydn is torn asunder by explosions. After the Prussians had taken Metz, they razed buildings to the ground to build their own. They demonstratively modelled buildings after medieval examples, as if to prove the perpetuity of their presence. Emmanuelle Straub plays Colette, who contradicts professor Asmuth in a discussion about 'incredible' nationalism. Places, the deadly weight of stones, the sharp clarity of words. At school, speaking French was forbidden. The local population had to make way for immigrants. The landscapes bear the marks of time. Can Colette 'forget'?

Filmmaker
Jean-Marie Straub, Danièle Huillet
Premiere
-
Country
Germany
Year
1994
Medium
35mm
Length
21’
Language
French
Sales
Pierre Grise Productions
Editor
Danièle Huillet