La Ronde, 1950, directed my Max Ophuls.
Ophuls was the consummate humanist; his films always seem to bring out the sensitive nature of relationships and their romantic implications.
He was also one of the most stunning set design artists of his generation. The theatrical elegance of his interiors is particularly engaging. These fanciful, dream-like environments provide mesmerizing montages that evoke surrealist influences.
La Ronde is in particular one Ophuls most accomplished works. Set at the turn of the century, an MC wanders about a cleverly contrived stage set that morphs into the first vignette. Presented as a series of interlocking segments, the story meanders about the lives of lovers indulging in various dalliances. These are sentimental fantasies of a more gentile time when extra-marital affairs were discretely and delicately sweet incidents of innocent intent.
Unfortunately theres not much of a selection of clips to view, but if you’re willing to wade through Criterions pre video ads I’ve included this link:
Theres also a nice still on UTube that plays the movie theme music, a waltz that will stick in your head all day: