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The Conclusion reprises two key issues from the Introduction: the leitmotif and its relationship with repetition, and the pause. There is an in-depth analysis of the use of Gustav Mahler’s work in Le Dernier Coup de marteau so as to propose that the “crystal-song” can be something other than a song sung. A return to Barthes’s punctum stresses the openness and mobility of the crystal-song, and its function as intervention rather than interlude or pause in the action.
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This is why sound-effects, including silence, could in theory be a leitmotif—I am thinking here of the sound of the wind in Michael Kohlhaas, which I mentioned in Chapter 2—but not a crystal-song.
“12 New Songs by Brassens (Posthumous Little Morsels).”
Approximate timings: 0.17 (rehearsal), 0.20 (rehearsal), 0.23 (rehearsal), 0.25 (rehearsal), 0.27 (Victor hitchhiking), 0.42 (Samuel plays Mahler on the piano), 0.52 (rehearsal), 0.55 (rehearsal), 0.58 (rehearsal), 0.58 (rehearsal), 1.02 (Victor plays football), 1.09 (rehearsal), 1.11 (Victor plays the CD to his mother), 1.18 (final exterior scenes).
“There are gestures instead of words…Whether it’s Grégory who uses his hands to conduct the orchestra, or Clotilde whose body expresses disease, or Victor who is constantly on the move looking for his father or breaking away from his mother. In these moments, spectators are completely engaged. Because you fill the gaps with your imagination, your subjectivity…That’s why the music is so important, it tells you what the characters are feeling. It replaces words.”
“By helping his son discover music Samuel gives him what he can’t give him with words. By letting music flood into him, Victor leaves room for his father. And when Samuel says to him ‘You look like your mother’, something is released. Saying that he remembers what she looks like is to recognise her and to give Victor the vital possibility to create an identity for himself, necessary for the passage to adulthood.”
“The film which takes itself as its object in the process of its making” ( 1989, 76).
“Colder, but indicating the opposite with his hands.”
“Stumbling on a fragment, thinking that the film can’t exist until you’ve found a particular way of filming such and such a scene, that can happen to me too…Focusing on a detail is also a way of not seeing the huge wave that’s going to drown the person who’s making a film or conducting Mahler’s Sixth…An hour and twenty minutes of music, a work that demands a lot of energy and endurance comparable to what’s required for a film shoot. Me too, I ask for more coldness while I’m in fact looking for the complete opposite.”
Delaporte apparently showed Truffaut’s film to Romain Paul who plays Victor (Tranchant 2014).
“Time, in its double movement of making presents pass, replacing one by the next while going towards the future, but also of preserving all the past, dropping it into an obscure depth” ( 1989, 87).
“There is never a completed crystal; each crystal is infinite by right, in the process of being made” ( 1989, 88).
“The pause-song, which suspends the action.”
“Is Time, the lacerating emphasis of the noeme (“that-has-been”), its pure representation” ( 1982, 96).
“The photograph is handsome, as is the boy: that is the studium. But the punctum is: he is going to die. I read at the same time: This will be and this has been; I observe with horror an anterior future of which death is the stake. By giving me the absolute past of the pose (aorist), the photograph tells me death in the future. What pricks me is the discovery of this equivalence” ( 1982, 96).
“Pornography ordinarily represents the sexual organs, making them into a motionless object (a fetish), flattered like an idol that does not leave its niche; for me, there is no punctum in the pornographic image; at most it amuses me (and even then, boredom follows quickly). The erotic photograph, on the contrary (and this is its very condition), does not make the sexual organs into a central object; it may very well not show them at all; it takes the spectator outside its frame, and it is there that I animate this photograph and that it animates me. The punctum, then, is a kind of subtle beyond—as if the image launched desire beyond what it permits us to see: not only toward ‘the rest’ of the nakedness, not only toward the fantasy of a praxis, but toward the absolute excellence of a being, body and soul together” ( 1982, 57–59).
Barthes, Roland. 1980. La Chambre claire. Paris: Seuil.
Barthes, Roland. 1982. Camera Lucida: Reflections on Photography. London: Jonathan Cape.
Burt, George. 1994. The Art of Film Music: Special Emphasis on Hugo Friedhofer, Alex North, David Raksin, Leonard Rosenman. Boston: Northeastern University Press.
Calvet, Louis-Jean and Jean-Claude Klein. 1987. “Chanson et cinéma.” Vibrations: musiques, médias, sociétés 4: 98–109. CrossRef
Delaporte, Alix. 2015. “Entretien avec la réalisatrice.” Le Dernier Coup de marteau [press-kit], [4–6]. Paris: Pyramide Films.
Deleuze, Gilles. 1985. Cinéma 2: l’image-temps. Paris: Minuit.
Deleuze, Gilles. 1989. Cinema 2: The Time Image. Translated by H. Tomlinson and R. Galeta. London: Athlone.
Dyer, Richard. 2011. In the Space of a Song: The Uses of Song in Film. London: Routledge.
Kivy, Peter. 2007. Music, Language, and Cognition: And Other Essays in the Aesthetics of Music. Oxford: Clarendon Press.
Matthews, David. 2002. “The Sixth Symphony.” In The Mahler Companion, edited by Donald Mitchell and Andrew Nicholson, 366–375. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
Tranchant, Marie-Noëlle. 2014. “Mostra de Venise: Alix Delaporte frappe juste.” Le Figaro, 4 September. http://www.lefigaro.fr/cinema/2014/09/04/03002-20140904ARTFIG00039-mostra-de-venise-alix-delaporte-frappe-juste.php, accessed 23 June 2016.
“Bohème, La.” 1965. Charles Aznavour (pf.). Charles Azanavour, Jacques Plante (comp.). © Djanik.
“Diamonds.” 2012. Rihanna (pf.). Mikkel Eriksen, Sia Furler, Erik Hermansen, Benjamin Levin (comp.). © EMI Music/Matza Ball Music/Where Da Kasz At?
“Mots bleus, Les.” 1974. Various. Daniel Bevilacqua, Jean-Michel Jarre (comp.). © Labrador.
“Orphelin, L’.” 1985. Jeanne Rosa (pf.). Georges Brassens (comp.). [no © listed]
Symphony no. 6 in A minor (“The Tragic”). 1906. Gustav Mahler.
“Take it Easy My Brother Charles.” 1969. Jorge Ben (pf./comp.). © Think Brasil Music.
“To Know You is to Love You.” 1972. Stevie Wonder, Syreeta Wright (pf./comp.). © Jobete Music.
“Une femme avec toi.” 1975. Nicole Croisille (pf.). Pierre Delanoë, Alfredo Ferrari, Vito Pallavicini (comp.). © Budde Music.
“Vénus.” 2008. Alain Bashung (pf.). Gérard Manset, Arman Méliès (comp.). © Strictly Confidential/Gérard Manset.
“Windmills of Your Mind, The.” 1968. Noel Harrison (English)/Michel Legrand (French) (pf.). Michel Legrand, Alan Bergman and Marilyn Bergman (English) and Eddie Marnay (French) (comp.). © EMI.