The Salamander (La Salamandre)

Dir: Alain Tanner
Cast: Bulle Ogier, Jean-Luc Bideau, Jacques Denis, Véronique Alain
123mins   1971   France, Switzerland   18   French    Subtitled   

French Film Festival 2019

Two self-proclaimed writers attempt to retell how a young woman shot her uncle, in this intelligent portrait of the free and the defiant - and of the dead-end jobs, old men, and "nitwits" that get in their way.

While one writer prefers facts, the other takes to fantasy, and together they become entangled with a character defined by a post-hippie, pre-punk sense of self, coming of age in a Swiss capitalist wonderland, too downtrodden to join it, too detached to smash it.

Director Alain Tanner and co-writer John Berger's create a wondrously tongue-in-cheek assault against the phoney morality of the bourgeoisie, and a timely ironic riposte to the well-meant offerings from the politically minded French New Wave film-makers of the time.

'A witty, shaggy, freewheeling tale' - Vogue


Sun 1 December