Screen Icons: Catherine Deneuve

12/03/2007
  |  Buy to Own: 12/03/2007
  |  525 min
Rated TBC by the BBFC

Synopsis

Five films starring French screen goddess Catherine Denueve. 'The Umbrellas of Cherbourg' (1964) is story of lost love in which the dialogue is sung rather than spoken. In the French seaside town of Cherbourg, Genevieve (Deneuve, in her first screen role) discovers that she is pregnant by her boyfriend, Guy (Nino Castelnuovo). When Guy is drafted into the army, Genevieve marries diamond merchant Roland Cassard (Marc Michel), even though she still loves Guy. She is destined for one last encounter with her true love, in a frosty Esso petrol station. 'Belle de Jour' (1967) is a surreal tale directed by Luis Bunuel. Deneuve plays a bored doctor's wife who hears of a brothel operating near her home. Struck by a sudden desire, she goes to the brothel and offers her services in the afternoons. She encounters a wide range of characters, eventually running into a friend of her husband... 'Donkey Skin' (1970) is a fairytale drama directed by Jacques Demy. The King (Jean Marais) is distraught at the death of his wife (Deneuve), and promises never to marry anyone less beautiful than her. But when he is compelled to marry his own daughter (also played by Deneuve), her fairy godmother manages to save her from this incestuous fate by making her demand impossible gifts, including a suit of clothes made from the skin of a magical donkey that ensures the land's prosperity. 'Manon 70' (1968) is a screen version of the 18th century French novel and the 19th century Italian opera 'Manon Lescaut'. Deneuve plays the confused Manon, torn between a young but penniless lover and an older, richer suitor whose generosity she finds very tempting. Finally, in the much later film 'Ma Saison Preferee' (1993), Deneuve and Daniel Auteuil play a middle-aged brother and sister looking after their dying mother in the last year of her life. Director and co-writer Andre Techine presents an examination of adult family relationships in this serious and personal film.