The Woman in the Fifth is a movie directed by Pawel Pawlikowski in 2011.
The subject for this month in Yareah Magazine is ‘Your Movie’ and I am going to talk a little about a film I saw this week. The film is titled The Woman in the Fifth (in original French La Femme du Vème). It’s a French-British-Polish drama based on a novel by Douglas Kennedy.
An American writer (Ethan Hawke) comes to Paris to see his daughter. We can reconstruct their relationship with dreams and some oneiric passages. The writer finds a poor job in a poor neighborhood in Paris and he meets with an elegant and sophisticated woman (Kristin Scott Thomas). That’s the beginning of a story that combines dreams, books, innocence and a very literary point of view in its narrative.
The Woman in the Fifth is not a commercial film. If you are looking for the last action movie with cars, fights and blonde girls this is not your movie. The Woman in the Fifth is not either a clear film. You might figure out the solution to the problem and, finally, you will have to recompose the story in your mind to find the plot. The film directed by Pawel Pawlikowski contains many literary references like Kafka, Faulkner and more. The rhythm, the roles, the environment… everything breathes books, stories and the essence of a good novel.
I have chosen The Woman in the Fifth for very personal reasons. No, it’s not Life of Pi and, of course, it is not Citizen Kane but… this movie has something special I cannot explain well. In French, it’s the expression ‘je ne sais quoi’ and this expression reflects quite well my feelings with this movie. Of course, I have written very similar stories to this (particularly one of them). If you have written a book, a short story or something like that, I recommend this film because it will be very familiar to everyone who has fallen any passion for books and literature. Sometimes, the film contains some elements similar to Bertolucci’s Last Tango in Paris and in the next scene the perspective changes.
Of course, if you like this kind of cinema, you will find familiar perspectives and tormented roles as always. The Woman in the Fifth is a strange and bizarre film about conscious and the relationship between reality and dreams. If you have read me before, you know I love this kind of stories and, of course, I like this film very much.
If you want to think for a while, I recommend this European film.
Thanks for reading, my friends.