Wednesday, July 8, 2009

Indochine (1992) (2nd time)

It is the story of Éliane Devries, a French plantation owner, and of her adopted Vietnamese daughter, Camille, with the rising Vietnamese nationalist movement set as a backdrop. [wiki]

Nominated for 2 Oscars:

Best Foreign Language Film: France (WINNER)
Best Actress: Catherine Deneuve

It felt like it lasted forever. I've first seen it about 2 years ago and it was actually a bit better the second time around. I wouldn't have given it a second chance, but I will write about Deneuve's Best Actress nomination for the other blog. Indochine is a serious film and, technically, it's done very well. And I'm also counting on the fact that it's historically acurate.

The foreign language film nomination seems obvious. I'm not sure about the win, though. The film has an epic feel to it, but the story itself is flawed in many ways. Catherine Deneuve's performance is just ok and the rest of the actors are quite mediocre. Young Vincent Perez is gorgeous and a pleasure to look at, but his acting is so bad especially in the beginning. Ironically, the best part of the film has almost nothing to do with Deneuve; it's the 2nd part, focused on the adopted daughter, her lover & the communists. When there's action going on, the film is actually quite good.

My rating for the film: 7/10. Nice execution and history. Lovely landscape to look at. A very interesting perspective on the communist uprising. But the film will sometimes test your pacience.


  1. I think you're being harsh on Catherine. Her performance shows incredible control.

    Imagine how most American actresses would completely destoy the film by "acting".

    Although I'll agree with you on how the film feels like a long one before you've even hit the second act.

  2. I am harsh on her and I'll be even a bit more at the end of the week when I'll do the profile. She's not bad, but except for one scene, there's not much to work with or (for me) really admire.

    And as I've said: truth is the best parts of the film had nothing to do with her.