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Blue Note

Andrzej Żuławski
La note bleue
France, Germany 1991 / 131’

The film shows 36 hours of Chopin's life, spent in Nohant. This is the day, when the love of Chopin and George Sand comes to an end and so does the composer's creative activity. Several years before his death, he wrote the very last note. This is the note George Sand called La note bleue.

Jan Słodowski

 

The Blue Note describes a couple, which is the central subject of all my films, I guess, starting from The Third Part of the Night.(...) I was fascinated with observing this artistic enigma: who really was George Sand, the coarse, treacherous woman, poor poet, who stuck with Chopin? She was very important to the feminine world, to the spirit of the emancipation of women. She was also a prominent socialist, but in her private life, she was an abominable woman. Chopin formed a relationship with a woman, who was absolutely no match for him. (...) But the main reason why I made this film was a desire to shoot in midsummer, in sunshine, with trees and meadows. In this natural setting, all symbols and signs of prosperity gradually disappear, leaving a space for pain. In short, I wanted to make a film about the last days of well-being.

Andrzej Żuławski, Opętanie

 

Żuławski decided to cast a distinguished pianist, Janusz Olejniczak, as Fryderyk and this moment was decisive for the film's extraordinary atmosphere. It made The Blue Note a film completely filled with music. (...) This unusual decision of the director was a success only because Chopin is played by a talented pianist. We can see and confirm with our own eyes, who performs the music, measure by measure. Janusz Olejniczak, who also proved his acting skills (...) easily convinces us to an idea, which could not be expressed so suggestively with simple editing tricks.

Jerzy Płażewski, Film na Świecie

 

Andrzej Żuławski (born in 1940) is one of the most controversial Polish directors. For years, he has been a creator of emotional, passionate, obsessive cinema on the edge of image hysteria. Even in his debut, the visionary Third Part of the Night / Trzecia część nocy (Poland 1971), Żuławski was visibly different from the communist Poland’s film style, which he never actually got adapted to. After the censors blocked his eccentric projects – The Devil / Diabeł (Poland 1972), referring to the events of March 1968 and the apocalyptic sci-fi film The Silver Globe / Na srebrnym globie (Poland 1976-87) – he resolved to move to France and to chain his artistic way to the European cinema. His subsequent films: The Important Thing Is To Love / L' Important c'est d'aimer (France / Italy / Germany 1975), Possession (Germany 1981), The Public Woman / La femme publique (France 1984) or Mad Love / L’amour braque (France 1985) were still shocking, both due to their new-wave form and the expressive, almost hysteric style. As he admits himself, he makes films about things that torture him, which are expressed the best through women. For many actresses – Małgorzata Braunek, Romy Schneider, Izabelle Adjani or Sophie Marceau – the roles proposed by Żuławski were the boldest and the most important ones of their artistic lives.

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