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12 February 2001 à 13:02

Germany celebrates

Only just released on movie screens in Germany, Raoul Ruiz's film "Time regained" has already stamped itself as a critical success. The German press has unanimously showered praise on this "sensational adaptation" (Hamburg Pur) of the Marcel Proust novel, and are applauding its French director, who successfully carried through this "mad project, perfectly capturing the spirit of Proust." (Taz)

In the eyes of our German neighbors, Ruiz is no less than a master in the art of screen adaptation: "Ruiz's film gives us Proust that will delight connoisseurs, readers and fans, but which works just as well with spectators who've never read a page." (Süddeutsche Zeitung). Not only is Ruiz hailed by some as the most accomplished adapter of this literary giant, but, according to "Literaturen," he "tears away the cocoon woven by the decades around 'Remembrance of Things Past.'" The director thus breaks with tradition: "Not satisfying himself with simple illustration, Raoul Ruiz has created his own cinematic prose, which holds its own up against the original; a guide through the labyrinth of the great storyteller Marcel Proust. The book has been adapted, this time for good." (Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung)

It was initially the film's superb photography that seduced the German critics, as Ruiz brilliantly retranscribes the charm of Proust's opus, "Remembrance of Things Past." Ruiz is credited with "images as grand and imposing as Magritte's hand!" (Schnitt), "images of great beauty..." (Maxi), and: "A fascinating collection of images. Ruiz manages to delve with elegance into the romantic world of the aristocracy and high society of early 20th century Paris. Past and present are intermingled, magically." (Brigitte). In a word, Ruiz's impressive rendition of Proust reveals an intimacy with the author and his work, considered to be "a little cinematic miracle" (Kulturnews)

And if the quality of the cinematography has been highly acclaimed, the casting and the performances, as well as the film's direction have not escaped the attention of critics across the Rhine: "Raoul Ruiz has made an outstanding film, 'Time Regained,' a synthesis of the life of Proust and of his book, studded with stars. Worthy of a special mention: a sumptuous and exciting adaptation." (Freundin); "The performances are first-class and the film is a feast for the eyes from the first to the last shot." (Cinema); "'Time Regained,' excellent filmmaking thanks to its magical moments and sequences." (Plärrer).

The "Werser Kurier" compliments the French director for managing to appeal even to the uninitiated as though they were avid fans of Proust, while successfully avoiding the obscure and esoteric: "An exhilarating movie cinematic event ... one to savor, whether or not you've read Proust."
And finally, the "Rheinischer Merkur" pays an all-out tribute to Ruiz, claiming: "Many directors have failed faced with the challenge of Marcel Proust, but the author would rejoice at Raoul Ruiz's production." That's saying something! We'll never know how pleased Marcel Proust truly would be, but now it's German audiences' turn to savor, with delight, this treat offered them by Ruiz.

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Latest update : 23 April 2009 à 13:02 CEST

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