April 16, 2020

La Captive
DVD-edition available for purchase through the CINEMATEK webshop.


La Captive
DVD-edition available for purchase through the CINEMATEK webshop.

The Chantal Akerman Foundation has managed to make a stock of dvd's of La Captive, a European edition from 2004, available for purchase through the CINEMATEK webshop that sends out purchases to all European countries.

European DVD edition from 2004

DVD 150 min. (108 + bonus)
Language: French, Portuguese, Spanish
Subtitles: French, English-Portuguese, Spanish
Region Code PAL / region 2 (Europe)
Cast: Stanislas Mehrar, Sylvie Testud

– Conversation: Chantal Akerman and Dominique Païni
– Comment by Sylvie Testud
– Pictures Gallery
– Filmographies
– Trailer

available for purchase through the CINEMATEK webshop
(outside of the EU
: also available for purchase through our Amazon.com storefront)

Chantal Akerman’s adaptation of Proust’s “La Prisonnière” is an ingenious assimilation of a rich array of cinematic influences, in particular, by her transformation of a work of literature into a cinematic work that refracts, with a distinctive modernism, a particular genre, namely, melodrama. Chantal Akerman’s hypnotic exploration of erotic obsession plays like “Vertigo” by Alfred Hitchcock or the doomed romanticism of Jean-Luc Godard’s “Contempt,” the sexual conflict of his “Masculine Feminine,” filtered through the director’s visionary feminist formalism.

Wealthy but disaffected would-be writer Simon (Stanislas Merhar) lives in an opulent flat with his grandmother (Françoise Bertin), their maid Françoise (Liliane Rovere), and Ariane (Sylvie Testud), the lover he obsesses over. Convinced that Ariane is having a lesbian liaison with the luminous Andrée (Olivia Bonamy), Simon takes to treating Ariane as a virtual prisoner, dogging her every move and restricting her social activities. On deciding to terminate the relationship Simon drives Ariane to a grand seaside hotel for a final, tragic night together.

Review by David Wood (BBC, 2001)

Loosely based on Marcel Proust’s “La Prisonnière” (a volume of “A La Recherche Du Temps Perdu” – one of literature’s most demanding works) Chantal Akerman’s “La Captive” is a gently captivating, deceptively austere work that mediates on the destructive nature of love, possession, and desire. Taking only the bare bones of Proust’s tale (Akerman claims her film to be inspired rather than fully informed by it) has a liberating effect, allowing the director to also contemplate the complex nature of sexuality itself, a recurring motif of Akerman’s work.

Formally the film plays to Akerman’s strengths (simple, direct medium long-shots with fluid camera movement) using the empty, almost deserted landscapes (beautifully shot by Sabine Lancelin) to further heighten the sense of impending alienation. Impeccably scored (Rachmaninov and Schubert feature) and performed to near perfection, “La Captive” is a rich, rewarding work and further evidence of one of cinema’s most singular talents.

La Captive

Chantal Akerman, France 2000
35mm / Color / 107 min

Cast: Stanislas Mehrar, Sylvie Testud
Production: Paulo Branco, Antoine Beau
Sound: Thierry de Halleux
Editing: Claire Atherton
Photography: Sabine Lancelin

€ 19

European DVD edition from 2004

Available for purchase through the CINEMATEK webshop

Please note that CINEMATEK does not ship orders, made through our website, outside the EU.
For shipping outside the EU, please send an e-mail to dvd@cinematek.be or purchase through our Amazon.com store…