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ビバ! マリア(1965年) Viva Maria! (1965)


監督 ルイ・マル/Director: Louis Malle
出演 ブリジッド・バルドー、ジャンヌ・モロー/Starring: Brigitte Bardot (B.B.)‚ Jeanne Moreau


 ルイ・マルはヌーヴェル・バーグに参加していない独立した作家、という見方があるが、本作「ビバ! マリア」をみていると、そうかもね、と思えてくる。この映画はルイ・マルの「しち面倒くさい映画はとりたくない」という、エンタメにかけるやる気満々なのだ

Louis Malle‚ and the contest between B.B. and Moreau.

There is the view that Louis Malle was an independent artist who didn’t participate in Nouvelle Vague. When watching Viva Maria!‚ I began to think that this might be true. This film is Louis Malle’s full motivation toward entertainment in the form of “I don’t want to shoot bothersome films.”

He is originally the son of a distinguished family‚ to the point where he self-funded the film Elevator to the Gallows. In the same film Jeanne Moreau found actressing enlightenment. Although she was married to Pierre Cardin for a short period‚ as expected her biggest influence was probably her encounter with Louis Malle.

At the time‚ Louis Malle complained that movies of late were too intellectual. Understanding that they’d be competing‚ the two top actresses couldn’t resist the temptation of the antics of an epic under the blazing Mexican sun. They must have been chuckling as they made this film.

The film is set during the revolution of a small South American country at the end of the century. Maria (B.B.) is the daughter of an Irish anarchist and a excellent sharp shooter. The other Maria (Jeanne Moreau) is the singer of a travelling circus group. After the ringleader is murdered‚ she leads the rebellion as a revolutionary. The cinematography is by the famed Henri Decae who swallowed up Louis Malle’s techniques. Just this in itself was half of the film’s success.

B.B.‚ who gained attention as a French sex symbol said‚ “There are feminine women who are stocked with all the weaknesses of women‚ but there are also women who are free and natural‚ with personalities like men.”As she and Jeanne fell into the latter of the two‚ they weren’t bothered by what society called the mischievous sex symbol. B.B. was quite something. She would appear dressed like a boy‚ then upon removing her hunting cap‚ her full‚ golden wavy hair would run down to her shoulders like a waterfall.

Henri Decae used these kinds of small tricks everywhere. Once in a closeup he sharply inlaid the screen with the carnivorous eyes of B.B.‚ which shone like a tiger or a leopard. With just the light of her eyes‚ we directly feel that B.B. isn’t a mediocre actress. Even with the same large and beautiful eyes as Audrey Hepburn‚ hers shine in a completely different way.

When this film was released in New York‚ the two Marias paraded down Broadway Street in an open-top car with a long marching band. At the French premiere‚ Alan Delon escorted the two. Jeanne Moreau was awarded the Best Foreign Actress Award at the British Academy Film Awards. It really was Viva Maria!