Thursday, July 07, 2005

Tih Minh 6: Les Oiseaux de nuit, Tih Minh 7: Evocation

FR 1918. PC: Gaumont. D: Louis Feuillade. /18 fps/ 31' + 27'. ♪ Donald Sosin. Wednesday 6 July 2005, Cinema Lumière 1, Il Cinema Ritrovato, Bologna. Grâce à la science du docteur, Tih Minh semblait de regaigner la vie. She is a tabula rasa, but her intelligence is revitalized to grow like flowers. Après des semaines de silence, les premiers paroles: "je t'aime". The villains keep lurking in the bushes with wiretaps. Le cousin Baptiste: engaged to serve the diplomat, Sir Grey. But the villains plant a decoy, Dolorès, in the adjoining room, to seduce Baptiste. Interesting touch: the thoroughly disgusted habitus of Dolorès. Still Baptiste is easy prey for her. Beautiful scene: Francis returns, and through the mirror we see the pistol of Dolorès under the bed. Another interesting Feuillade feature: long takes of faces of persons caught in a dilemma. We see them think hard. Oiseaux nocturnes dans Villa Luciola. Marquise Dolorès, une enigme vivante. Placide is the life of the film, great in love scenes with Rosette, amusing in his disappointed reaction to Baptiste. The good doctor hypnotizes Dolorès, and in her hypnotized state we now learn the backstory to everything. In 1911 in Tonkin, Laurençon, le père de Tih Minh... clair de lune... flashback... le voisin: un allemand nommé Marx. Un jour, un vieil Hindu: "je veux parler à un representant de France". The Hindu message from 1870 ("en cas d'une guerre Européenne") gives highly sensitive information for European politics. Tih Minh's memory comes back: Marx = Gilson, he is the murderer of her father, already then in search for the secret document. She senses more: "Marx est ici!". Yes, he is hiding behind the curtain, the nail marks of Tih Minh still on his chin. The villains cut the electricity, and Marx/Gilson manages to escape again.

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