Chaplin and Birkin are actresses taken up by an enigmatic playwright (Kalfon) and installed in his fabulous suburban mansion in order to perform a play (whose last act is still unknown) for one of his house parties. With the agency of a magician and clairvoyant, melodrama gradually seeps into both life and the rehearsals of fiction; the affaires promoted between playwright, magician and actresses lead to premonitions, hallucination, jealousy and dark secrets, all of them threaded into a weird finale of reconciliation. As with Céline and Julie, the concern here is less with the contrast between fiction and reality, more with the invention of a magical realm from which reality is rigorously excluded: enchantment is discovered not from fairytale, but within life itself. Rivette creates a unique world and language, answerable finally only to himself. CPea.