Seraphine

My husband chose Seraphine, a film by Martin Provost, when we were out last Friday. I watched it absolutely mesmerized. Although the subtitles appeared below our screen, too far down to easily read, I was able to comprehend enough of the film to follow it completely. That’s not because my French is so fluent any more, but because the pace of this film is slow and calm. It is lovely beyond words.

Seraphine is the true story of Seraphine Louis (Yolande Moreau-Paris Je T’aime, Amelie), a simple and profoundly devout housekeeper who in 1905 at age 41, began painting brilliantly colorful canvases. In 1912, a German art critic (Ulrich Tukur-The Lives of Others) discovered her paintings while she was working for him as his maid. The film tells the story of the relationship between the avant-garde dealer and the visionary cleaning lady forging a testament to the mysteries of creativity and the resilience of one woman’s spirit. (back cover)

It has won 7 Cesar awards including:

  • Best Actress – Leading Role (Yolande Moreau)
  • Best Cinematography (Laurent Brunet)
  • Best Costume Design (Madeline Fontaine)
  • Best Film
  • Best Music Written for a Film (Michael Galasso)
  • Best Production Design (Thierry François)
  • Best Writing – Original (Marc Abdelnour and Martin Provost)

So, even if you aren’t celebrating Paris in July? You should see this film. Vraiment.

p.s. It’s available on DVD.

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15 thoughts on “Seraphine”

  1. Sounds like such a great film! Thanks for the review! I'll be adding this to one to my list of films to watch. Great actress plus art equals very interesting film. Cheers!

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  2. I am not sure where to see a foreign film in my city….I am going to have to look that up.I am currently so far behind in my reading…I have been trying to finish one book for 4 weeks now….very sad. I hope to change that next week on vacation!

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  3. I've just followed you from your previous site. Nice new look. I wish you had a followers thingit but I did click the subscribe button and look forward to more of your reviews.

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  4. Will have to watch this. Someday. Thank you so much for the suggestion!Once again, a cool new background/design to admire. Which I do.

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  5. Hello, hello. This movie looks to be right up my alley. I just added it to my Netflix queue. Have you seen La Vie en Rose or Tell No One (Both French films). They were both very good. The first is the story of singer Edith Piaf, and the second is a thriller.

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  6. Seraphine is a beautiful name. Its the picture of the woman walking fiercely that wants me to look for the CD or DVD but it's very rare to find foreign movies here (aside from American ones)!

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  7. Oh yes, I saw this at last years French Film Festival. It's so moving and such a wodnerful story of talent, dedication, and the fine line between creative spirit and perceptions of mental health. I loved her passion for the angels and the beautiful work she created. Great choice to review here. Thanks

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