Directed by Jacques Rozier
Michel is a young technician in the fledgling TV industry and is due for military service in two months at the time of the Algerian War. Juliette and Liliane are inseparable best friends, and aspiring actresses, who hang around outside the TV studio. Michel invites them in to watch, flirts with them both, and dates them separately and together. When Michel goes on a holiday to Corsica, just before he is drafted, the girls follow.
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★★★½ review by Connor Denney on Letterboxd
Adieu Philippine can almost be seen as an extension of La Collectionneuse, in a way, even though Éric Rohmer's film came a few years later. Haydée's appeal to Adrien was her elusiveness, the mystery that surrounded her smile and her actions. She was liberated, free to do whatever she chose with whomever she chose, but there was some element about her that made her thoughts completely unreadable and her choices unpredictable. It is as if she knew something that Adrien did not know, and by extension, that the audience did not know. In Jacques Rozier's film, we might learn just what it was that Haydée knew: that women had a little more agency than society at the time tried to allow them. Maybe Liliane and Juliette are objectified, but they know this, and they take advantage of it. In a society where they are deemed to be worth only as much as their bodies are, the women take advantage of men's lasciviousness by using their bodies as leverage to meet people they want to meet or get jobs they want to hold. One women even claims to not want to give a man a striptease show unless he was willing to pay. Adieu Philippine turns a mirror toward society, showing the inherent sexism in the world and finding that women are only making lemonade because they are given such bitter lemons.
★★★★½ review by Jon Johnson on Letterboxd
It’s almost impossible not to fall for the charms of Rozier’s freewheeling Nouvelle Vague paean to youth in all its transitory, bitter-sweetness.
Playful and rough around the edges though it may be (the verité style tracking shots down Parisian boulevards, clearly filmed on the hoof, are great fun) , there are some breathtakingly beautiful and poignantly staged, shots of Corsica and the surrounding areas and the cast of mostly first-time and non-professional actors are perfect for their roles (why Céry appears to have never had another major film role again is beyond me).
The films greatest success is that, like its subject matter, its light, breezy, charming and seemingly aimless as it moves along. Only in retrospect (particularly after it’s conclusion) does it become a weightier, richer, and more melancholic proposition.
The Potemkine Rozier set is about £40 from Amazon France, at present, and is English subbed for 4 features and 2 shorts (the extras are un-subbed). You could make worse investments.
★★★★ review by Eddie White on Letterboxd
Rozier is an often overlooked director of the French New Wave but there's something really unique about his works. Adieu Philippine has a youthful energy and life to it that is less stylised than Godard or Truffaut of the same era and is filled with an immediately noticeable natural warmth and humour. His pairings of music with imagery and sequences are also a stand-out. There's one shot of the two young woman characters happily walking along one of Paris's busy promenades as "Catalùna" by Malando and his Tango Orchestra plays and it captures the vitality of youth so magnificently.
★★★★ review by ljkmovie15 on Letterboxd
Great addition to my French New Wave fixation! Found it on YouTube.
★★★★ review by Tim Brayton on Letterboxd
For all that we conceive of the French New Wave as a youth movement, it was light on films that were actually about youth. Which already makes this a rather nice standout, for its whirling, messy portrayal of profoundly average 19/20-year-olds screwing around, in all of their frustrated libido and snarling indifference at the thought of confronting anything farther in the future than the next month or so. Wonderfully cast, with a killer soundtrack, and maybe a bit too many of Godard's bad habits taken up by director Jacques Rozier, without quite enough of Godard's strengths. Still, "go for it and to hell with the consequences" is so much a part of the characters' personalities, it's hard to complain that it's baked into the filmmaking as well.
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