6.6/10
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5 user 17 critic

Genealogies of a Crime (1997)

Généalogies d'un crime (original title)
At her son's funeral, Solange, a lawyer famous for losing hopeless cases, agrees to defend René, her son's age, accused of murdering his wealthy aunt, Jeanne, who's part of the ... See full summary »

Director:

Raoul Ruiz
Reviews
1 win & 1 nomination. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Catherine Deneuve ... Jeanne / Solange
Michel Piccoli ... Georges Didier
Melvil Poupaud ... René
Andrzej Seweryn ... Christian
Bernadette Lafont ... Esther
Monique Mélinand Monique Mélinand ... Louise
Hubert Saint-Macary Hubert Saint-Macary ... Verret
Jean-Yves Gautier Jean-Yves Gautier ... Mathieu
Mathieu Amalric ... Yves
Camila Mora-Scheihing Camila Mora-Scheihing ... Soledad (as Camila Mora)
Patrick Modiano ... Bob
Jean Badin Jean Badin ... L'avocat
Brigitte Sy ... Jeanne
Laurence Clément Laurence Clément ... Aline, la secrétaire
André Engel André Engel ... Psychiatre 1
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Storyline

At her son's funeral, Solange, a lawyer famous for losing hopeless cases, agrees to defend René, her son's age, accused of murdering his wealthy aunt, Jeanne, who's part of the Franco-Belgian Psychoanalytic Society, known for odd views and methods. She reads Jeanne's journal, documenting René's criminal tendencies. Solange believes him innocent, manipulated into the murder or framed. Odd psychiatrists turn up, including Georges Didier, who runs FBPS, and his rival, Christian, who believes crime originates in a story's taking hold of a person. After the verdict, René and Solange's relationship changes, Georges and his society commit a bizarre act, and the police record Solange's story. Written by <jhailey@hotmail.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

is she the murderer, the victim, or both?

Genres:

Crime | Drama

Certificate:

See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

France | Portugal

Language:

French

Release Date:

27 March 1998 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Genealogias de um Crime See more »

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Box Office

Gross USA:

$77,998

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$77,998
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Sound Mix:

Dolby SR

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.66 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Connections

Referenced in La donna lupo (1999) See more »

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User Reviews

Defenestrating Cats
26 April 2006 | by tedgSee all my reviews

"Narrative syndrome;" "Mnemosyne;" "Truth is absorbed through the eyes."

I haven't seen many of the large number of Ruiz films. But I have seen some on both sides of this in terms of engagement.

You should know that these are first essays on the nature of reality and fiction in fiction. Only as a second matter are muscle and concurrent elaboration added. Ruiz isn't interested to go as far as, say "2001" (or for that matter "2046") in taking the armature of narrative shuffling and make us care.

So, as a friend says, you can see the plumbing. In fact, it is little but plumbing, more like "The Hyposthesis of the Stolen painting" where every element was there only to drive the metanarrative with the narrative itself almost mute.

Not so in "Comedy of Innocence" or "Time Regained" where he makes the narrative obvious. With the former, we actually care about Huppert's character. Here, the central character is a Go board, where (if you watch closely) the patterns of what surrounds what change in subtle ways. This is the partner in a sense to "Hero" which is cast as a game of Go in the rain. But we forget.

If you choose to see this, dear friends, choose to approach it as an exposition, elaboration or fold on one of your favorite already layered projects. Because though it has a Latin engine, it wears a French straitjacket.

The notion here is that the story captures the person and changes her, not the other way around. So if you want to know anyone, you need to know the genealogy of their story. In watching this, the characters are attached to stories, not to bodies. So several characters have more than one body and the other way around.

Every single woman in the thing is one woman: all are redheads except the second being of Deneuve's making, who only differs in being blond. She (the blond) is our designated detective. The film merges with paintings, tableaux, games, courtships, therapies, rituals, and at least one ancient campfire tale.

For me, this was the other side of the warring narrators in "2001" with which I suggest you view it.

Ted's Evaluation -- 3 of 3: Worth watching.


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