Interview with Éric Rohmer on ‘Pauline At The Beach’

Rohmer: This one is an improvisation between Amanda Langlet and Pascal Gregory in the restaurant scene:

Rohmer: I would like to compare this with the film.

Interviewer: If you don’t remember the film well, you could believe this is the film. You don’t sense a difference.

Rohmer: There is a difference. In a way it feels more natural than the film. At the same time, its less gripping. Here we have natural effects, for instance, the voice, the intonations - her voice rises in pitch, which is natural. This is to force her to be natural because an actor, especially at this age, sometimes tends to recite the text. I wanted her to completely forget the text. When she performed for the film, she assimilated everything perfectly. You’re going to see the difference with exactly the same scene in the film…

She is expressive through her words and through her posture which is - and I didn’t ask her to do this - the posture in the Matisse painting, Blouse Roumaine.

I didn’t think of doing Matisse, but one day, as I walked past a shop selling reproductions, I saw the Matisse poster which is used in Pauline at the Beach. The [same] one in the bedroom which is also used in the poster for the film.