Vladimir Nabokov

NABOKV-L post 0005505, Wed, 4 Oct 2000 09:29:28 -0700

Fw: Another cinematic clone of LOLITA?
EDITOR's NOTE. NABOKV-L thanks Glenn Kenny for the following.

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From: <TomPerdue@aol.com>

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Re: Susan Elizabeth Sweeney's query re Beau Pere

I haven't looked at this picture in some time, but as I recollect it, it
really doesn't qualify as a cinematic clone of Lolita. For one thing, its
protagonist Remi is in no way a connoisseur of nymphets. A bit of a roue,
perhaps, but no Humbert. It's the girl who kind of forces himself on him.
Well, not forces; obviously he could say no. The whole thing seems to be a
sex farce on the surface, but is more about loss and grief and loneliness,
eventually; like a lot of Blier's best work, what seems
nudge-nudge-wink-winkish about it eventually grows more desolate and
profound. It's eventually pretty sad, and lead actor Patrick Deweare plays
the sadness beautifully. Perhaps he wasn't playing, as he committed suicide
not too long after this picture was released in the U.S. Incidentally, a
previous Blier film, Get Out Your Handkerchiefs, concerns two best friends
(played by Deweare and Gerard Depardieu) who form a menage a trois with
Depardieu's sullen wife; she eventually dumps them both for an
a 13-year-old boy; the main joke here is that it's the two adult males who
like 13-year-olds. In any case, most of Blier's films deal with "deviancy"
perversity of some sort. As noteworthy and excellent as many of them are,
none can really be described as Nabokovian. He comes to his subject matter
his own way, and on his own terms.

Glenn Kenny
Senior Editor
Premiere Magazine