Swann In Love

  • 1984
  • Movie
  • R
  • Drama

It took four writers, several production companies, and the French Ministry of Culture to make this adaptation of the beginning of Marcel Proust's monumental Remembrance of Things Past. Jeremy Irons is Charles Swann, a wealthy Jewish intellectual who has overcome anti-Semitism in 19th-century Paris and managed to become part of le haute monde. The film...read more

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It took four writers, several production companies, and the French Ministry of Culture to make this adaptation of the beginning of Marcel Proust's monumental Remembrance of Things Past. Jeremy Irons is Charles Swann, a wealthy Jewish intellectual who has overcome anti-Semitism in

19th-century Paris and managed to become part of le haute monde. The film shows his courtship and socially suicidal marriage to the courtesan Odette (Ornella Muti), condensing part of Proust's seven-volume work into a single day in the life of Swann. The couple's affair is shown in flashback as

recalled by Swann, revealing that he has married this woman, his complete opposite, without benefit of really loving (much less liking) her. Paralleling this story is that of Swann's friend, the aesthete homosexual Baron de Charlus (Alain Delon), and his effort to seduce an unwilling young man.

Directed by Volker Schlondorff, who made THE TIN DRUM (1979) and the Dustin Hoffman TV film of "Death of a Salesman," SWANN IN LOVE reflects a similar dedication to bringing great literature to the screen. Schlondorff's style, however, is better suited to Gunther Grass and Arthur Miller than to

the unhurriedly subtle Proust. The film does lavishly re-create the period milieu and features some beautiful location settings shot by the great Sven Nykvist, as well as a top cast, but the filmmakers seem to have been too intimidated by the original material to have come up with the kind of

truly satisfying, original cinematic work that would have justified the effort.

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  • Released: 1984
  • Rating: R
  • Review: It took four writers, several production companies, and the French Ministry of Culture to make this adaptation of the beginning of Marcel Proust's monumental Remembrance of Things Past. Jeremy Irons is Charles Swann, a wealthy Jewish intellectual who has o… (more)

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