(The Red Inn)
(L'auberge rouge), (The red inn)
Gina Manès, Léon Mathot, Jacques Christiany,
Based on a novella by Balzac, L’auberge rouge is an extraordinary “double narrative” in which two stories unfold in parallel, only to be entwined in the end. Two quite different milieus are skillfully juxtaposed: an elegant dinner in 1825 Paris, where a story is recounted of murder and deceit in an isolated Alsace inn one rainy night in 1799; and the cramped and bustling inn itself, with all its “types” in wonderful contrast to the bourgeois characters delineated in the present-time sequence. Epstein develops a mood of mystery and tragedy while elucidating a complicated narrative entirely through unconventional means.