Isabelle Adjani lionized in Techine's lost masterpiece
By Armond White (ė.jpg)Isabelle Adjani's screen work is ethereal yet passionate. Once compared to James Dean at the time of her breakthrough role in Francois Truffaut's 1975 The Story of Adele H., her artistry most resembles Lillian Gish's but less maidenly and always open to a streak of madness. As a movie star, Adjani doesn't embody her times so much as the cinema itself.
This proposition inspires "ADJANI" the two-week tribute to the French actress at the Brooklyn Academy of Music's Cinematek. It starts with one of her most amazing films: Andre Techine's 1979 The Bronte Sisters. (March 8, though not shown in the U.S. since appearing at a French Film Festival at the 57th Street Playhouse in 1980). This exceptional bio-pic was made at the prodigious height of Techine's directorial commencement-a prestige project bringing Adjani together with France's other Isabelle, Huppert. Techine included Marie-France Pisier, the scene-stealer of his 1975 French Provincial, to respectively portray Emily, Anne and Charlotte, Britain's trio of romantic gothic authors.