The Accompanist

In Paris during the German occupation an impoverished 20-year-old pianist (Romane Bohringer) goes to work as an accompanist and all-around servant for a famous classical singer (Elena Safonova) who, along with her businessman husband (Richard Bohringer, Romane’s father), is a known collaborationist. The pianist’s love/hatred for her employer goes through further changes when she finds herself delivering a letter to the singer’s lover (Samuel Labarthe) and when the husband decides to break with the Germans and seek political asylum in England. Director Claude Miller’s free adaptation (1992, 111 min.) of a best-selling novel by Nina Berberova (much better known abroad than here), cowritten with Luc Beraud, isn’t very fresh in its story or period ambience, but Romane Bohringer proved to be someone to watch, and we’re given another opportunity to listen to classical music (producer Jean-Louis Livi also produced Tous les matins du monde and Un coeur en hiver). (JR)

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