November 13, 2007

A great movie that’s capturing award after award is “The Diving Bell and the Butterfly,” the new film from Julian Schnabel (“Before Night Falls” and “Basquiat”). The film is based on the true story of Jean-Dominique Bauby (played by Mathieu Amalric), the successful and charismatic editor-in-chief of FrenchElle.
When the film begins we find him living his life to the fullest – enjoying everything that’s around him. But suddenly, without warning, he suffers a severe stroke and it leaves him in a life changing state. And while the physical challenges leave him with littlehope for the future, he begins to discover how his life’s passions, his rich memories and hisnewfound imagination can help him achieve a life without boundaries.

The thing to know about Jean-Dominique Bauby is he suffers from a condition called locked-in syndrome. This is where your brain works perfectly and you can see and hear, but you’re completely parallelized so you can’t communicate with anyone. It’s a condition that affects hundreds of people worldwide and one that’s scary to even think about.

But what’s amazing about the film is the way it addresses his “locked-in” condition. The camera acts as his eye and we feel as if we’re inside his body. We then hear his thoughts while the world communicates with him. I cannot explain how effective the film is at making you feel as if you’re inside his head and occupying the same space. It’s a remarkable achievement.

Starring in the film is Mathieu Amalric, Emmanuelle Seigner, Marie-Josée Croze, Anne Consigny, Patrick Chesnais and Max Von Sydow. And the other thing to know is the cinematography was done by Janusz Kaminski. Look him up. Now you know why the trailer and the clips look so amazing.

Anyway, I just interviewed a lot of the cast as well as Julian Schnabel, so look for those interviews soon. Until then, take a look at the clips below. “The Diving Bell and the Butterfly” opens November 30th in limited release and then it has a national rollout soon after. It’s a film not to be missed.


Bauby wakes up

Don’t cry


more clips on page 2 —–&gt



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