french films > The Diving Bell and the Butterfly

The Diving Bell and the Butterfly

Diving Bell and Butterfly Movie Poster

The Diving Bell and the Butterfly

cast: Mathieu Amalric, Emmanuelle Seignier, Marie-Josée Crozr, Anne Consigny, Patrick Chesnais

year: 2008

colour: yes

certificate: 12

director: Julian Schnabel

runtime: 112

"Le Scaphandre et le Papillon" was a literary sensation when it was published in 1997, just days after the death of its author, Jean-Dominique Bauby (Mathieu Almaric) who, two years earlier, had succumbed to the rare "locked-in syndrome"- totally paralysed, apart from his left eye. Director Julian Schnabel sidesteps a cloying bedside tale to tackle his subject's state head-on and, most importantly, cinematically. This is a claustrophobic and imaginative treat as Schnabel draws us into Bauby's head and expresses his trauma through moments of visual poetry.

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