And Now My Love


2h 30m 1974

Brief Synopsis

The movie follows the lives of a woman and a man starting from several generations earlier. The story spans a whole century and several continents.

Film Details

Also Known As
Lifetime, A, Toute une vie
MPAA Rating
Release Date
1974

Technical Specs

Duration
2h 30m
Sound
Mono
Color
Color (Technicolor)

Synopsis

A wealthy Jewish girl falls in love with a petty thief.

Film Details

Also Known As
Lifetime, A, Toute une vie
MPAA Rating
Release Date
1974

Technical Specs

Duration
2h 30m
Sound
Mono
Color
Color (Technicolor)

Award Nominations

Best Original Screenplay

1975

Articles

Toute Une Vie (And Now My Love) on DVD


Of the glossy romances that French director Claude Lelouch is so enduringly identified with, probably the most ambitious in scope was Toute Une Vie (1974), recently released to DVD by Image Entertainment. Released in the United States under the title of And Now My Love, the film imaginatively presented the arc of two predestined lovers against a backdrop of a century's worth of social change, leavened with a celebration of cinema as an art form.

The screenplay, which garnered an Oscar® nomination for Lelouch and collaborator Pierre Uytterhoeven, opens at the dawn of the 1900s and manages to effectively compress 60 years within a breathless first 20 minutes. In a sequence shot in black and white and replete with title cards, a Lumiere cameraman (Charles Denner) takes a break from his labors to successfully flirt with a young woman intrigued with his strange new device. In the trenches of WWI, he is cut down just as he learns of the birth of his son David. After the armistice, an aging general finds himself entranced by a leggy showgirl (Martha Keller), who very presently provides him with a daughter, Rachel.

The Third Reich rises and falls; the adult David and Rachel (Denner and Keller) meet on a train bearing camp survivors. The happiness they gain together will be short-lived, as Rachel dies giving birth to their daughter Sarah. David opens a shoe manufacturing concern, and as the 1950s wear on, he becomes increasingly prosperous and indulges his beloved daughter all the more. By her teenage years, Keller--surprise--steps into the role. She commences her first affair with Gallic pop singer Gilbert Becaud (himself), who her father booked for her Sweet Sixteen party.

At this juncture, the film introduces the parallel story of Simon (Andre Dussollier), a young, disenfranchised Algerian War veteran subsisting on a string of petty thefts and scams. When the gendarmes finally catch up to him, the windy defense of his pompous lawyer (Andre Falcon) falls flat, and he winds up going to prison. He invariably winds up as an apprentice to the prison photographer (Charles Gerard), and demonstrates an aptitude for camerawork.

With his daughter suicidal and despondent after being thrown over by Becaud, David takes her on a world trip to distract her, but neither the locales nor the affairs she engages in serve to abate her unhappiness. Her trek to self-discovery will include liaisons with the labor agitator plaguing her father's operations. Simon's path after leaving the slams finds him applying his new skills to blackmail and pornography, which nets him more time in prison to catch up on Cahiers du Cinema. He goes legitimate upon his release, creating award-winning commercials and seeking regard as a serious artist.

At various junctures throughout, their paths come oh-so-close to intersecting; while the outcome is never in doubt, Lelouch makes it a pleasant enough ride, with plenty of inside humor and visual flourish; the presentation of Simon's skiing commercial is particularly memorable. While the director's device of casting his players in multiple, multigenerational roles made his subsequent Les Uns et les Autres (1982) daunting to follow, he confined the gimmick to Toute Une Vie's first half hour, with markedly better results. The film also benefits from the engaging work of the two leads.

The edit of Toute Une Vie offered up by Image runs 143 minutes, 21 minutes longer than the American theatrical release of And Now My Love, and seven minutes shy of the original cut. To be frank, U.S. audiences were done a favor by the splicing. The primary casualty was a 12-minute sequence near the film's conclusion, seen through the mind's eye of Simon as the now ecologically conscious filmmaker explains his ideal project. In a millennium's-end scenario evocative of Z.P.G. (1972), mankind's DNA has been so corrupted from generations of exposure to environmental toxins that abnormal births have become epidemic, and procreation is only permitted pursuant to a global regulatory scheme at utopian, new age-y "birthing centers." What was merely pretentious futurism in '74 is now seen as ponderous and unneeded exposition, and it feels very much out of place with the rest of the narrative. The print is presented in a 1.66:1 aspect ratio, enhanced for 16.9 TVs. The mastering job is clean, and, as with most of Image's recent Lelouche offerings, the DVD is free of any significant supplemental materials.

For more information about Toute Une Vie, visit Image Entertainment. To order Toute Une Vie, go to TCM Shopping.

by Jay S. Steinberg
Toute Une Vie (And Now My Love) On Dvd

Toute Une Vie (And Now My Love) on DVD

Of the glossy romances that French director Claude Lelouch is so enduringly identified with, probably the most ambitious in scope was Toute Une Vie (1974), recently released to DVD by Image Entertainment. Released in the United States under the title of And Now My Love, the film imaginatively presented the arc of two predestined lovers against a backdrop of a century's worth of social change, leavened with a celebration of cinema as an art form. The screenplay, which garnered an Oscar® nomination for Lelouch and collaborator Pierre Uytterhoeven, opens at the dawn of the 1900s and manages to effectively compress 60 years within a breathless first 20 minutes. In a sequence shot in black and white and replete with title cards, a Lumiere cameraman (Charles Denner) takes a break from his labors to successfully flirt with a young woman intrigued with his strange new device. In the trenches of WWI, he is cut down just as he learns of the birth of his son David. After the armistice, an aging general finds himself entranced by a leggy showgirl (Martha Keller), who very presently provides him with a daughter, Rachel. The Third Reich rises and falls; the adult David and Rachel (Denner and Keller) meet on a train bearing camp survivors. The happiness they gain together will be short-lived, as Rachel dies giving birth to their daughter Sarah. David opens a shoe manufacturing concern, and as the 1950s wear on, he becomes increasingly prosperous and indulges his beloved daughter all the more. By her teenage years, Keller--surprise--steps into the role. She commences her first affair with Gallic pop singer Gilbert Becaud (himself), who her father booked for her Sweet Sixteen party. At this juncture, the film introduces the parallel story of Simon (Andre Dussollier), a young, disenfranchised Algerian War veteran subsisting on a string of petty thefts and scams. When the gendarmes finally catch up to him, the windy defense of his pompous lawyer (Andre Falcon) falls flat, and he winds up going to prison. He invariably winds up as an apprentice to the prison photographer (Charles Gerard), and demonstrates an aptitude for camerawork. With his daughter suicidal and despondent after being thrown over by Becaud, David takes her on a world trip to distract her, but neither the locales nor the affairs she engages in serve to abate her unhappiness. Her trek to self-discovery will include liaisons with the labor agitator plaguing her father's operations. Simon's path after leaving the slams finds him applying his new skills to blackmail and pornography, which nets him more time in prison to catch up on Cahiers du Cinema. He goes legitimate upon his release, creating award-winning commercials and seeking regard as a serious artist. At various junctures throughout, their paths come oh-so-close to intersecting; while the outcome is never in doubt, Lelouch makes it a pleasant enough ride, with plenty of inside humor and visual flourish; the presentation of Simon's skiing commercial is particularly memorable. While the director's device of casting his players in multiple, multigenerational roles made his subsequent Les Uns et les Autres (1982) daunting to follow, he confined the gimmick to Toute Une Vie's first half hour, with markedly better results. The film also benefits from the engaging work of the two leads. The edit of Toute Une Vie offered up by Image runs 143 minutes, 21 minutes longer than the American theatrical release of And Now My Love, and seven minutes shy of the original cut. To be frank, U.S. audiences were done a favor by the splicing. The primary casualty was a 12-minute sequence near the film's conclusion, seen through the mind's eye of Simon as the now ecologically conscious filmmaker explains his ideal project. In a millennium's-end scenario evocative of Z.P.G. (1972), mankind's DNA has been so corrupted from generations of exposure to environmental toxins that abnormal births have become epidemic, and procreation is only permitted pursuant to a global regulatory scheme at utopian, new age-y "birthing centers." What was merely pretentious futurism in '74 is now seen as ponderous and unneeded exposition, and it feels very much out of place with the rest of the narrative. The print is presented in a 1.66:1 aspect ratio, enhanced for 16.9 TVs. The mastering job is clean, and, as with most of Image's recent Lelouche offerings, the DVD is free of any significant supplemental materials. For more information about Toute Une Vie, visit Image Entertainment. To order Toute Une Vie, go to TCM Shopping. by Jay S. Steinberg

Quotes

Trivia

Miscellaneous Notes

The Country of France

Released in United States 1974

Released in United States May 18, 1974

Released in United States on Video November 1985

Shown at Cannes Film Festival May 18, 1974.

Released in United States 1974

Released in United States May 18, 1974 (Shown at Cannes Film Festival May 18, 1974.)

Released in United States on Video November 1985