Archived Events, Film

(7/13 & 7/23) A SUMMER’S TALE (1996) DIR. ERIC ROHMER @MFA


Gaspard, Margot, Solene, and Lena find themselves and each other on a beach in Brittany, where they are vacationing, working, and waiting for something to happen. They are four characters in search of their respective versions of summer, that most coveted and elusive season, onto which we project our fantasies of pleasure and escape — assuming there’s a difference between the two — and from which we so rarely emerge with memories in accord with our expectations or desires.

A SUMMER’S TALE, the third film in Rohmer’s Tales of Four Seasons — a kind of addendum or coda to his earlier set of Six Moral Tales — screens today and ten days from today at the MFA as part of the 19th Annual Boston French Film Festival. It evinces late-period Rohmer’s penchant for a kind of casual classicism, emphasizing dialogue and developing its elegantly intricate scenario at a relaxed, deliberate pace. Always less interested in formal experimentation than Godard, and not given to the grand gestures and self-revelations of Truffaut, Rohmer built a gentler, cooler, more detachedly thoughtful oeuvre than either antagonist in that legendary two in the Wave. Here he gives us four young lives, suspended within their illusions of timelessness, and let’s us watch as they work out, with little in the way of melodrama or angst, such questions as who loves whom, and what friendship is for, and whether music trumps all of it anyway.

Finally being distributed theatrically in the United States for the very first time, eighteen years after it was made and four years after its director’s death, A SUMMER’S TALE is absolutely prime Rohmer — which means it is very beautiful, deceptively slight, and movingly true. Come out and catch the breeze.

7/13 – 1PM // 7/23 – 8PM
113 Minutes
$9 MFA Members, Seniors, and Students
$11 The rest of us

Museum of Fine Arts
7/13 Harry and Mildred Remis Auditorium (Auditorium 161)
7/23 Barbara and Theodore Alfond Auditorium (Auditorium G36)
Avenue of the Arts
465 Huntington Avenue
Boston, Massachusetts 02115

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