L’aveu [1970]

01Apr12 – 5 – L’aveu (Costa-Gavras: 1970)

Time has not been kind to Costa-Gavras’ THE CONFESSION (“L’Aveu, 1970). What may have been meant as a shocking indictment of Stalinist totalitarianism and show trials is now, sad to say, really old news. It wasn’t even news when the movie was originally released; certainly I as a 15 year old in the LA suburbs knew about them when the movie was released. But it isn’t general familiarity with the subject matter that does the film no service. Jorge Semprún’s screenplay is overly explicit, clunky, insufficiently dramatized, and if the film is supposed to be told largely through flashbacks (and it is) it’s amateurishly constructed. Costa-Gavras’ directing is equally clunky, filled with dramatic quick zooms or dollys in for dramatic closeups and some truly awful editing in parts (the confessions on the stand; the verdicts read in court; etc); in fact, the final half hour or so of the film are badly edited *and* directed. On the plus side, Simone Signoret is quite good in a smallish role, and Yves Montand manages to save the picture with a really outstanding performance as the dedicated, true believer Communist who’s forced to confess to absurd charges of treason. 5/10. [4/1/12]



Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: