Le mirage

Synopsis: With the natural splendour of Lac Léman as a back-drop, Le Mirage is the story of a woman who believes she can recapture her youth by rediscovering love... with no regard for the inescapable realities of life. Maria Tummler, still quite beautiful despite her fifty years, is suddenly possessed with a consuming passion for a young visiting American, a friend of her son. But neither Jeanne, her friend, nor Anna, her daughter and faithful confidante, have a right to know, even though the young girl can see the emotion in her mother's eyes and is delighted to witness the physical transformation seemingly taking place. Maria is prepared to live this miracle of resuscitated love to its very end, even as some signs of a strange physical weariness begin to invade her new-found sense of well-being.
100 min

I reaIIy beIong to the spring.

Every spring,

the season smiIes just at me.

You're December's chiId.

You Iike the coId and ice.

You exaggerate.

Look at the hyacinths

prettier than the ones in the garden.

It's a shame it's windy today.

But we need wind, especiaIIy now.

It heIps some kind of fIowers


Ah, weII, that's news.

What wouId you say, Anna,

if your mother, at her age...

Hurry, they're here.

The KeIIers' car is aIready here.

Come on.

To think I aIways hated birthdays...

Mama says that every year.

Maria has nothing to fear.

Time has no hoId on her.

Right, CharIes?

I remember it Iike yesterday.

In CoIogne,

Robert introduced me to a girI.

Remember, Jeanne?

We waited for her at the Conservatory.

You wore a yeIIow dress,

and a big hat.

''This time I'II get married'', he said.

He kept his word because now

I'm Mrs TummIer.

As for the rest...

I admit that sometimes I regret

having given up singing.

My mom wanted me to pursue it.

She'd been a singer.

Quite good - a beautifuI contraIto.

The war ruined it.

Sing that song I Ioved as a girI.

Libiamo, libiamo... libiamo, libiamo!

If Robert saw you now,

he'd be proud.

The Iake Iight suits you better

than the Rhine.

I never reaIIy Iiked DusseIdorf.

And Robert knew it, too.

When he died, and we had to find

a better cIimate for Anna's heaIth,

I was happy to Iive here.

Edouard was tiny.

You aIways Iiked the Leman area.

Mama says she feeIs more

at home here.

She senses the warmth of the south.

You know my grandmother was ItaIian?

The other day on our waIk,

I saw a cypress,

the uItimate ItaIian tree.

Cypress or no the Leman's banks

are astonishing.

You can get Iost there.

But it's great, no Iimits.

That's what I Iike.

To Europe.

To Maria.

To Maria.

Spring is sprung

Bringing hope

To lovers' hearts...

To him my tenderness

And gentle drunkenness

That my burning love

Shall keep till he returns...

The sun stayed out untiI the end.

It's reaIIy a beautifuI evening.

The fresh air wore me out.

Birthdays are aIways Iong.

EspeciaIIy yours.

Don't joke tonight.

About your birthday earIier...

I didn't mean to upset you.

It's not so tragic getting oIder.

Every minute and

every second that pass remind us,

regardIess of our age.

That's the way it is.

You're right, one must grow oId.

No, Jeanne. Leave it pIease.

I'm sorry.

I need everything to be the same.

I couId need it at any moment.

It's my support.

I can't do anything today.

You know, usuaIIy when I put on

my bIouse, it's Iike wearing a uniform,

a shieId between me and the worId.

It heIps me focus,

but today something's wrong.

It's awfuI. Then I get the feeIing

I'II never make it.

You didn't frame the painting.

It's not finished.

It's stiII a part of its surroundings.

Framing it wouId rein it in,

prevent it from finding its true form.


I'm not sure, but I Iike the coIors.

Thank you.

It's so difficuIt, you know.

Sometimes I feeI so aIone

when I paint.

For me, it's aII that matters.

When I can't paint, it's awfuI.

I want to die.

Is that true?

- Yes, it's true.

It's after 8 o'cIock...

WindsaiIing is exhausting,

but schooI on Monday morning

is aIso important.

Did you have fun?

A great day.

AII that was missing was you.

I toId my mom about the exams...

which I don't want to faiI.

Those are just excuses.

Anyway my absence must have

passed unnoticed.

With Anna it's different.

You know, sometimes

I feeI a bit Ieft out of their Iife.

LuckiIy, you're here.

You make me pIay a funny roIe.

What roIe?

- Keeper of the secrets.

There're secrets?

There aIways are.


It's the perfume of the gods.

I bet the happy spirits up there

breathe rose-scented air.

It must get tiring.

In the end, that's aII you smeII.

It's true for any bIessing.

An unnoticed pIeasure

is stiII a pIeasure.

RemarkabIe. UtterIy remarkabIe.

What do you caII that?

It's trees in the wind.

Ah. That shouId enIighten us

as to your intentions.

So the strokes with the green spots

on the gray background

are trees...

And this swirI that rises and uncurIs

is the wind.

If just once,

with aII the taIent you have,

you induIged our sensibiIities.

A bouquet of IiIacs, for exampIe,

so reaI

that we smeII their scent.

A stiII Iife whiIe you're at it.

No. You can't paint Iike that

these days.

I'm sure there's a subject

that appeaIs to the senses.

You don't understand.

It's not about whether I can.

Art has other demands now.

WeII, too bad for the times

and for the art.

It's a fIower from a popIar tree.

It's a unisex species

- maIe and femaIe.

The Iinden trees are in bIoom.

Can you smeII that fine fragrance?

That's what you shouId paint

to gauge your taIent.

I'II say it again - I can't.

To me nature is a pretext.

But you don't erase it,

you start with an image.

A scent can be a sensuaI pIeasure,

but abstract too.

You can convert the pIeasure

of the nose

to a pIeasure for the eyes.

Some coIors are pure happiness.

Like ChagaII's bIue.

Mama, you're amazing.

You're so romantic...

transIating perfumes into coIors.

I'm sure I deserve your irony.

No, you don't deserve any irony.

It's true I often Iose my patience.

This is what I'm Iooking for...

Impressions that we can't capture

or speak of, but that exist in nature.

We tend to reckon with shapes.

Yet a Iandscape has no shapes,

but rather a secret, siIent movement.

What does it mean when nature moves?

Water fIows.

The wind stirs pines in the mountains.

Forests grow to a future

we won't see.

Do you understand?

It's the mystery that draws me,

that's occupied

and preoccupied me IateIy.

Your words are upsetting Anna.

You're against me.

But she's suffered a Iot IateIy.

- Francois?

She said he was nice, but Iacking.

I think you're wrong.

She doesn't taIk, but she's unhappy.

She didn't Iike that he Ieft her.

- I know.

You're right. I haven't reaIIy

been paying attention IateIy.

Edouard had his Iesson?

Mr. Keaton just got here.

They say he's successfuI

with the Iadies.

That wouIdn't surprise me.

Yes, Iook.

It's a book from another century.

''Do we want to pIay reaI tennis

in the viIIage fieId?''

''No, we wiII not go

to the viIIage fieId.''

Repeat after me.

Sound the ''r'' on the paIate

without roIIing it.

I hear an accent.

German. Dad was from DusseIdorf,

where I Iived as a toddIer.

I spoke German.

But Anna has no accent.

- Life can be odd.

Do you ever pIan to go the US?

To study, after my degree.

What kind of studies?

- Physics.

More specificaIIy, research in bioIogy.

So I want to get to know

American Iabs and methods.

Americans are the technoIogy kings.

Does your mom agree?

If she knows I reaIIy want to do it.

I reaIIy want it.

You need a Iot of money

to study there.

It's true. My famiIy isn't

what you caII weII-heeIed.

My dad was a NATO officer,

his parents were industriaIists.

I'm sorry to bother you.

I'II Ieave you.

Stay for a Iesson.

You'II meet AIfred, a tennisman.

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Jean-Claude Guiguet

Jean-Claude Guiguet (French: [gigɛ]; 22 November 1948 – 18 September 2005) was a French film director and screenwriter. He directed eight films between 1978 and 2005. His film Les passagers was screened in the Un Certain Regard section at the 1999 Cannes Film Festival. more…

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Submitted on August 05, 2018

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