Sunday 8 April 2012
Violette Noziere 
Violette Noziere (or) Violette, a disturbing chronicling of the eponymous girl who was convicted in the 1930s for murdering her father and for attempting to kill her mother, ranks amongst the most renowned works of Claude Chabrol, one of the founding fathers of the Nouvelle Vague movement. The film begins on the fateful day she poisoned her parents with Violette (Isabelle Huppert) reminiscing about her life. The elaborate flashback sequences make it immediately obvious that this young lady has an inherently rebellious streak within her, and that she silently detested the conservatism of her petit bourgeois parents – played by Chabrol regular Stephane Audran as the nagging mother and Jean Carmet as a jolly-old railroad engineer. On account of her deep-set desire for a grander and a more spectacular life, she leads a double life where, in place of the obedient and submissive girl, she is a bold, flashy and unapologetically promiscuous young woman. As a part of this existence of lies and subterfuge, she ends up falling in love with Jean Dabin, a no-good young man whose sole intent is to fleece as much money out of her as possible. The role of the titular character required a serene exterior masking a turbulent and a strong anti-social streak within, and Huppert didn’t just rise to the challenge, but also provided a startling turn as the complex and psychologically disturbed Violette. And the scene, where after poisoning her parents she starts voraciously finishing her dinner, is a truly chilling moment. Another deeply disquieting moment is when her distraught and furious mother suddenly changes her stance towards her with respect to her allegations against her dead father based on rather harmless memory.
Director: Claude Chabrol
Genre: Drama/Crime Drama/Docudrama/Biopic