Marguerite Duras - La mort du jeune aviateur anglais

  • 36'
  • France
  • 1993
In 1944, a young Englishman crashed his plane into a bank of trees in Trouville, a small town near Deauville. He was taken down, and eventually buried by the local townspeople, who paid for a beautiful gravestone and commemorated his death every year with a ceremony. This is not a film about that soldier, but about the importance this story (recounted in her final book, Écrire) holds for Marguerite Duras, and the fields of memory and the sense of loss it evokes. The ageless mandarin Duras sits in a chair and tells the story to an off-camera Benoit Jacquot - 'It's not a novel, or a poem, or a song - it's conversations.' And by following her lead, giving us images of the trees, the grave, the church beside it, Jacquot - one-time assistant to Duras, friend, and now documentarian - doesn't simply illustrate Duras' story but interacts with it, gently yet decisively, and creates a singular object: exquisite, perverse if not ravishingly mad, and movingly direct in the way it frames Duras' honest confrontation with mortality. (KJ)
Directors
Benoit Jacquot, Yann Andrea
Country of production
France
Production Year
1993
Festival Edition
IFFR 2005
Length
36'
Medium
35mm
Language
French
Producer
INA - institut nat. de l'audiovisuel
Cinematography
Caroline Champetier