Time Regained

  • 1999
  • Movie
  • NR
  • Drama

If you've never read all of Remembrance of Things Past, there's a good chance you won't have the slightest idea what this hauntingly beautiful film is about. The good news is that it doesn't really matter: Raul Ruiz's splendid adaptation of Marcel Proust's sprawling, autobiographical novel is such an enthralling visual experience that the plot details are...read more

Where to Watch

Available to Stream

  • Watch on
Reviewed by Ken Fox
Rating:

If you've never read all of Remembrance of Things Past, there's a good chance you won't have the slightest idea what this hauntingly beautiful film is about. The good news is that it doesn't really matter: Raul Ruiz's splendid adaptation of Marcel Proust's

sprawling, autobiographical novel is such an enthralling visual experience that the plot details are really secondary. The film begins with novelist Proust on his death bed, hurrying to finish his seven-volume magnum opus. As he dictates, the light changes, the furniture shifts and with all the

abruptness of automatic recall we're plunged into a grand, WWI-era soiree. There the novel's unnamed narrator (Marcello Mazzarella, bearing an astounding resemblance to the real-life Proust) encounters his great, unrequited loves: the aristocratic and empty Duchess of Guermantes (Edith Scob); the

scandalous Odette (Catherine Deneuve), an upwardly mobile courtesan who married her way into very high society; and Odette's daughter Gilberte (Emmanuelle Beart), who married Marcel's bisexual best friend Saint-Loup (Pascal Greggory). Triggered by the sound of a musical phrase, the sight of an old

advertisement or the flavor of cookie, the action jumps back and forth in time, a delirious collision of surreal magic-lantern fantasies, sudden memories and specters from the past, including Saint-Loup's masochistic uncle the Baron de Charlus (John Malkovich), who shared his nephew's passion for

a opportunistic young violinist (Vincent Perez), and the ever-elusive Albertine (Chiara Mastroianni), the narrator's great romantic obsession. Rather than reduce the monumental scale of Proust's novel to a simple narrative, Ruiz and co-writer Gilles Taurand have chosen to capture instead its

spirit, often at the expense of comprehensibility. It's a worthwhile sacrifice: With its huge cast of sumptuously costumed characters and stunning decor, the film resembles an Impressionist masterpiece come to life, and ends with a tremendously moving acceptance of art and mortality.

Cast & Details See all »

  • Released: 1999
  • Rating: NR
  • Review: If you've never read all of Remembrance of Things Past, there's a good chance you won't have the slightest idea what this hauntingly beautiful film is about. The good news is that it doesn't really matter: Raul Ruiz's splendid adaptation of Marcel Proust's… (more)

Show More »