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The Left-Handed Woman

A train shatters the stillness of a Paris suburb, leaves a puddle on the station platform quivering with some unsolicited, mysterious, moving energy. This Romantic metaphor is at the very centre of Handke's grave, laconic film, produced by Wim Wenders, which begins where The American Friend left off: in the ringing void of Roissy airport. Here, the Woman (Edith Clever, superb in the role) meets her husband (Ganz) and, for no apparent reason, rejects him in favour of a solitary voyage through her own private void. In her house, with her child, the film records a double flight of escape and exploration, her rediscovery of the world, her relocation of body, home and landscape. This emotional labour makes its own economy: silence, an edge of solemnity, an overwhelming painterly grace. Self-effacement is made the paradoxical means of self-discovery, and the film becomes a hymn to a woman's liberating private growth, a moving, deceptively fragile contemplation of a world almost beyond words.

Release details

Duration: 113 mins

Cast and crew

Director: Peter Handke
Screenwriter: Peter Handke
Cast: Edith Clever
Bruno Ganz
Angela Winkler
Markus Mühleisen
Bernhard Minetti
Bernhard Wicki
Rüdiger Vogler
Michel Lonsdale
Gérard Depardieu
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