Love on the Ground

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Love on the Ground
Promotional poster
Directed by Jacques Rivette
Produced by Arthur Cohn
Martine Marignac
Written by Pascal Bonitzer
Marilù Parolini
Suzanne Schiffman
Jacques Rivette
Starring Jane Birkin
Geraldine Chaplin
André Dussollier
Jean-Pierre Kalfon
Cinematography William Lubtchansky
Edited by Nicole Lubtchansky
Distributed by Gaumont
Release date
17 October 1984
Running time
125 min
169 min (director's cut)
Country France
Language French

Love on the Ground (French: L'Amour par terre) is a 1984 French film directed by Jacques Rivette. The film stars Jane Birkin, Geraldine Chaplin, André Dussollier and Jean-Pierre Kalfon. It was released in France on 17 October 1984.


A young man in Paris collects group of people to come and witness a comic theatre performance in a small apartment. The performance sees Silvano (Bo) hiding two women Charlotte (Chaplin) and Emily (Birkin) from each other, despite the lived-in appearance and small size of the apartment. In the audience is the play’s author, Clément Roquemaure (Kalfon) who decides to use the same cast for rehearsals of his new play that weekend at his empty mansion. After arriving at the mansion, Charlotte and Emily are afflicted by disturbing visions, as a consequence of the presence of the resident magician, Paul. As the rehearsal progresses, the two actresses continue to have visions, including those of a romantic calamity that took place at the mansion. This is a calamity that the weekend gathering seem on the verge of repeating.[1]



Janet Maslin of The New York Times noted that the screenplay "wittily affords the director a great many opportunities for a brand of gamesmanship that enlivens the film without trivializing it. Mr. Rivette is able to sustain a complex, shifting relationship between the real and the theatrical without losing the film's overriding sense of fun." Maslin continued her analysis; "The process by which Clement's theatrical work is molded to fit reality, and vice versa, is rendered in a clever, entertaining style that fits perfectly with the behavior of the participants, since Mr. Rivette displays a cool ingenuity that matches that of the performers. Even when it becomes entangled in the romances that take shape during the course of the week, the film sustains its trickiness and sophistication." Maslin also praised the casting; "Miss Birkin and Miss Chaplin make an invigorating team, and the combination of their offbeat styles is full of surprises."[2]


  1. ^ Rivette: Love on the Ground / The Gang of Four Reverseshot. Retrieved on 30 July 2011
  2. ^ Maslin, Janet. "Amour Par Terre" by Jacques Rivette. The New York Times. 7 October 1984. pp. 86

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