Carmen (1984 film)
|Directed by||Francesco Rosi|
|Produced by||Patrice Ledoux|
|Written by||Henri Meilhac
|Music by||Georges Bizet|
|Distributed by||Gaumont (France)
Columbia Tristar (US)
|Running time||152 min.|
Carmen (1984) is a film directed by Francesco Rosi. It is a film version of Bizet's opera Carmen. Julia Migenes stars in the title role, Plácido Domingo as Don José, Ruggero Raimondi as Escamillo, and Faith Esham as Micaela. Lorin Maazel conducts the Orchestre National de France.
Rosi selected 1875 for the period and filmed entirely on locations in Andalusia, using Ronda and Carmona and Seville itself to simulate the Seville of that era. He worked with his longtime collaborator, the cinematographer Pasqualino De Santis, and with Enrico Job supervising the sets and costumes. Rosi acknowledged Gustave Doré's illustrations for Baron Charles Davilliers Spain (which was published in serial form in 1873) as his principal source for the visual design. He believed that Bizet, who never visited Spain, was guided by these engravings, and shot scenes in some of the exact places that Doré drew.
Julia Migenes-Johnson's freckled, gamine Carmen is the chief glory of the production. Her strutting, her dark, messy, frizzy hair—her sexual availability—attract Don José and drive him crazy. Carmen, who's true to her instincts, represents everything he tries to repress. But after he has deserted the Army and lost the respectability that meant everything to him, he thinks she owes him lifelong devotion. Carmen's mistake was in thinking she could take him as a lover on her own terms.
The film premiered in France on March 14, 1984, and in the U.S. on September 20 of that year. In 1985, the film was nominated for the Golden Globe Award for Best Foreign Film.
In late 2011 the film was released on both a regular, anamorphically enhanced Region 1 DVD, and on Blu-ray.
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