Six Parisians, including a real estate agent (Isabelle Carré) and his religious co-worker (André Dussollier), face a sad search for real love.
" [A] mature adaptation of a dramatic daisy chain by veteran British playwright Alan Ayckbourn. "
" A film about love and blunders done from the perspective of age, crafted by writer Alan Ayckbourn, 68, and director Alain Resnais, 85. Our younger directors and screenwriters should show this much brilliance and feeling. "
" Alain Resnais turns this multi-character tale of misspent love into pure cinema, transforming the physical world into a symbolic statement about divisions, distances and separation anxiety. "
" At an age when most people are reduced to waiting for the Grim Reaper, Resnais is challenging life as if he were half a century younger. "
" Few filmmakers portray emotional detachment so achingly well. "
" It's a Parisian romantic roundelay with sundry couples connecting and disconnecting, but it looks and sounds like no sex comedy ever made: It's transcendentally yummy. "
" Lowbrow plus highbrow does not equal middlebrow, and the breezy accessibility of Private Fears in Public Places does not make it any less a work of art than Resnais's more difficult early successes. "
" Private Fears in Public Places is far from difficult and that, it is also worth noting, is not a criticism. The film is accessible, pleasant, dreamy, a touch goofy and melancholic. "
" Private Fears in Public Places, a masterpiece by any measure, is fresh, immediate and contemporary, but its wintry yet warm perspective is suffused with the wisdom and experience of a great filmmaker who turns 85 on June 2. "
" Resnais has always been an expressionist, using his settings and compositions to evoke the inner states of his characters. Here, tying expressionism to social critique, he becomes an improbable but unmistakable blood brother of Carl Dreyer. "
" Resnais shapes affecting performances from a polished cast. He creates a warm, comic melancholy. "
" Something about Resnais' rigorous attention to the tiniest detail, his infinitesimal flourishes of surrealism and the metrical precision of Eric Gautier's camerawork -- not to mention the terrific cast of French cinema veterans -- finally sucked me in. "
" The tenderness with which Resnais observes their efforts makes for genuinely enchanting entertainment. "
" Unlike most interconnected ensemble pieces, closure never comes. This gambit makes the talky tragicomedy work despite the affectations; a determination to end well without all being well somehow feels like just the right move. "
" What reaches us, most of all, are the hidden, unmet longings that keep the film's Parisian characters from finding true happiness. "
" French art films aren't generally known for their feel-good endings, but a total lack of resolution can be just as cloying as happily ever after. "
" Private Fears suffers from [director Alain] Resnais' inability to open it up and give it the look and pulse of a film. "
" The film is beautifully shot and edited, but these emotional snapshots won't stay long in the memory. "
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