Juliette Binoche (“The English Patient”) and Vincent Lindon (“Titane”) who co-starred for the first time together in Claire Denis’ “Both Sides of the Blade” explained the emotionally draining experience of making the film 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 romantic 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 it 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 apart.” “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, saying that he agreed with everything Binoche had said and adding that the film was primarily about passion.
“I’m more interested in passion than in love,” Lindon said. “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.”
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’ “Let The Sunshine In,” which played at Directors’ Fortnight in 2017 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 bring myself to asking people in the subway 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 the film’s team together in some ways.