French director Claude Chabrol, one of the pioneers of the nouvelle vague in the 1950s, died yesterday. Tomorrow, our film critic Ryan Gilbey will devote his weekly blog post to a proper assessment of Chabrol’s career. In the meantime, here is a link to an interview Chabrol gave in 1995 to the French film magazine Positif. Here Chabrol is talking about how his film La Cérémonie, which stars Isabelle Huppert, marked a return to politics:
My last political film was Poulet au vinaigre. What I was interested in then was to show the provincial bourgeoisie as starkly as possible, not in too heavy a way, but so that that critique was definitely a feature of the film. Subsequently, I found no particularly stimulating social phenomena to observe. And it is only now, in the past two years, that I am beginning to reconsider. I had a conversation with a young hooligan which left me with a feeling that society was about to explode, or implode rather, because it’s not just a marginal phenomenon. So I decided to make something of this feeling, but not in too precise a documentary way. Just as well, because Mathieu Kassowitz’s La Haine (1995) makes the point much better than I could have done. Our films are related, in that they reflect the beginnings of this explosion. He sees it as an explosion. I see it as an implosion.