Rodin

In 1880 French sculptor Auguste Rodin is 40 year-old. That year, he gets a commission from the French government to produce The gates of hell, which will include two of his most famous masterpieces The kiss and The thinker. Although Rodin (Vincent Lindon) loves his wife/partner, Rose (Séverine Caneele), he has a ten years tumultuous affair with his student Camille Claudel (Izïa Higelin). Rodin and Claudel seems to be fighting a lot. Elsewhere, many of Rodin works are monuments of French literary figures of the time. A commissioned monument of Victor Hugo was unfinished. It is interesting to see Rodin attempting to make a statue of French novelist Honoré de Balzac. First the rotund Balzac is represented naked, with his genitals fully exposed. Then Rodin has the bizarre instinct of covering the naked plaster-cast with a cape drenched with plaster. This monument was controversial at the time (1891), probably because it was outside of the norm. I found Rodin mildly interesting when we see him at work. But the off and on love affair between Rodin and Claudel is boring. There is too much talk. A unintereting talk-fest.

Rémi-Serge Gratton

Rodin

 

Directed by:
Jacques Doillon

Screenplay by:
Jacques Doillon

Starring:
Vincent Lindon
Izïa Higelin
Séverine Caneele
Edward Akrout

119 min.

In French with English subtitles

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