Sunday, July 4, 2010

Catherine Breillat one of the 100 women that inspires me

"There is no masculine psychology in my cinema. There is only the resentments and desires of women. A man should not attempt to recognize himself in my male characters. On the other hand, he can find [in the films] a better understanding of women. And knowledge of the other is the highest goal."

The brilliant Catherine Breillat

Author and filmmaker Catherine Breillat has garnered a reputation as one of the most controversial women in film and literature. Her works primary focus is on female sexuality and is told always from the woman's perspective.
At 17, she published her first novel, “L'homme Facile,” which became a cause célèbre for its blunt language and open depiction of sexual subject matter. The controversy generated by L'homme Facile gave Breillat enough recognition that she was able to pursue a career as a writer.

her prettiest film

In 1975, she directed “Une Vraie Jeune Fille,” which was adapted from one of her novels. The film focused on the unusually explicit depiction of the sexual obsessions of an adolescent girl, it generated a certain amount of controversy and was further hindered by financial problems on the part of the film's producers, which prevented it from receiving a proper launch at the time.
After directing two films that received plenty of hostile press but very little money, her career as a director was put on hold. She continued to write screenplays but it wasn't until 1988 that she was in charge of another feature, “36 Fillette.” Depicting the burgeoning sexuality of a 14-year-old girl hell-bent on seducing a middle-aged man. This one fared well enough at the box office to allow her to make another film.

her fairy tale "Bluebeard"

Her real international breakthrough, came in 1999 with the success of “Romance,” about a schoolteacher whose relationship with her boyfriend has gone sour, leading her into a variety of sexual liaisons with other men, it was one of her first films to play in mainstream cinemas across Europe and the United States though it clearly depicted explicit intercourse and fellatio, as a result it generated a great amount of press attention.
Romance also spawned a number of positive reviews and think pieces in major newspapers and magazines, and finally confirmed Catherine Breillat status as a major filmmaker outside her native France.

This thing she said and I love, "The problem is that censors create the concept of obscenity. By supposedly trying to protect us they form an absurd concept of what is obscene."

My love my care,


  1. Have you ever read Huysman's 'Down There', Simone? It's the only book I have put down, being unable to carry on with it for fear of contamination.

  2. The Breillat quote you close with, is absolutely true. Interesting post, Simone.

  3. I'd never heard of her! Thanks for turning me on to another strong lady!

  4. Hey, Simone!

    I just saw a trailer for Bluebeard a few days ago actually and I really wanted to see it.

    As for the last quote you have on this post that Breillat said, I couldn't agree more. I don't think the government or anybody should censor anything, including movies, books, etc.

    Write on and fight on!

  5. Thank you for introducing us to yet another fascinating woman of inspiration.

  6. Simone,
    Thank you again for enlightening us to another woman that makes a difference.

    On the quote,
    "The problem is that censors create the concept of obscenity. By supposedly trying to protect us they form an absurd concept of what is obscene."

    . . . I have come to see that sometimes those that have a need to "protect us" want to control us by labeling passion as obscenity.

    I always enjoy stopping by your blog. May your day, Simone, be filled with the passions of your desires.

  7. I admit, reading this post makes me feel like a prude. I'm scandalized. hehe. I majored in French and I took several classes where we were required to read and watch french books and films. Usually, my reaction was similar to this one. However, I'm glad that she can express herself through her work so openly. Freedom of expression is important.

    I too write. I often like to focus on teenage romance. The sweet innocence of it touches something in my heart. I also love to write the male POV. Admittedly, when I'm reading novels (many of the ones you have listed), I find myself waiting for the hero to show up. Strange, I know.

    I got off topic there but, why not?
    Have a great day