Portrait of a Lady on Fire
Original Title: Portrait de la jeune fille en feu
Running Time: 120min
Film Year: 2019
Category: Films, Knight Marimbas Award
Set in 18th century Brittany, Portrait of a Lady on Fire is an exquisitely elegant French drama, an enigmatic romance between a painter and her subject. Brilliantly written and directed by Céline Sciamma, Portrait is imbued with an unmistakable female gaze and emotional depth.
Following the unexpected death of her sister, Héloïse (Adèle Haenel) is brought back from a convent and betrothed to an unknown man from Milan. Héloïse’s mother, La Comtesse (Valeria Golina), is set on having Héloïse’s portrait painted, but she refuses to pose, in rebellion against the arranged marriage into which she is being forced. So La Comtesse slyly hires Marianne, a rare female professional artist in the period, to secretly paint Héloïse’s portrait, all the while posing as her ostensible companion.
Through walks, profound conversations, and long-held, tantalizing looks, the relationship between Héloïse and Marianne evolves with delicacy and intimacy. Winner, Best Screenplay, Cannes Film Festival.
This screening is supported by John S. and James L. Knight Foundation and sponsored by TV5Monde.
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Director: Céline Sciamma
Producer: Bénédicte Couvreur
Screenwriter: Céline Sciamma
Production Company: NEON
Music: Jean-Baptiste de Laubier, Arthur Simonini
Cinematographer: Claire Mathon
Editor: Julien Lacheray