Sunday in the Country
Time Out says1910, a French country house in high summer. A well-honoured painter is at the end of his working life. As usual, he invites his son, son's family, and his single daughter to visit him, and in the span of one hot day, Tavernier encompasses not only the happiness and sorrows of family life, but also subtler side-comments on life, art and the relation of one to the other. For the painter has lived through the Impressionist revolution, but preferred to hoe his own quiet furrow, away from what he admired but could not connect with. The statement is brave, for it aligns with Tavernier's own position as the leader of the mainstream in France. A mention of Renoir is no accident: the film once more returns to the solid decency and the hedonism of both Renoir pére (painter) and fils (film-maker). Tavernier still shoots in a fluid transatlantic/classic style, but his forte is those fleeting moments that are happy until destroyed by reflection. CPea.