Juliette Binoche (“The English Patient”) and Vincent Lindon (“Titane”) who starred for the first time together in Claire Denis’s “Both Sides of the Blade” said the experience was emotionally draining at the Berlinale press conference.
The highly anticipated film, which was acquired by IFC Films ahead of the festival, is world premiering in competition on Saturday evening. Binoche had strong words to describe her experience filming the movie which revolves around a tumultuous love relationship disintegrating.
“It was very difficult to do these scenes, they worked us more than we worked them, and they even ate us up inside, but we did with courage, with fury,” said Binoche, referring to the title of the book, “Avec amour et acharnement” by Christine Angot, who co-wrote the script with Denis.
Binoche said the film depicts a “rollercoaster of emotions” and the “visceral” attachment one can have for a lover and how it can “tear you appart” when you go through this heartache. “I think we’ve been brave to make this film because the subject is extremely difficult and I think it’s changed us, we didn’t come out of it unscathed,” said the actor.
Lindon, who recently starred in Julia Ducournau’s Palme d’Or winning “Titane,” concurred, said that he agreed with everything Binoche had just said and added that the film was primarily about passion. “I’m more interested in passion than in love. When you have someone under your skin (…) and when you start feeling that this person is drifting away from you, it’s so terrible, you could do anything to keep that person close to you,” said the actor.
Produced by Olivier Delbosc at Curiosa Films, the movie has been described by some people who have seen it as being in the same veins as Denis’s “Let The Sunshine In,” which played at Directors’ Fortnight in 2027 and also starred Binoche.
Denis said the film was written and shot during the thick of the pandemic when Paris was on lockdown, which is why it shows people wearing masks. We shot while we were on lockdown and I couldn’t myself asking people in the subway in Paris to take off (their masks) or replace them by extras; I thought, well, this is the present, and the present looks like this,” said Denis. She added that the experience of making a film together during those lonely months of lockdown brought them together in some ways.