Clouds of Sils Maria 2014 Criterion Collection
Regardless of whether or not we're willing to accept it, we're all getting older by the day. One moment, we're an eighteen-year-old with our entire life ahead of us, and the next, we're a forty-year-old with responsibilities. Getting old is a very serious fear that many people have around the world, as many refuse to accept it, and cling to a youth that has left them. This is one of the many complex issues discussed in Olivier Assayas' Clouds of Sils Maria.
At the peak of her internationally successful acting career, Maria Enders (Juliette Binoche) is asked by a highly acclaimed director to accept the part in the very same play that originally made her famous. At the early age of eighteen, she played Sigrid, a destructive youth that takes advantage of an older woman named Helena, which drives her to suicide. Now, she's being asked to play the part of Helena, while tabloid queen Jo-Ann Ellis (Chloe Grace Moritz) plays Sigrid. Retreating to a remote region of the Alps, she begins to rehearse with assistant Valentine (Kristen Stewart). Taking upon this role proves to be more destructive than ever imagined.
While Maria is traveling in order to attend a celebration of Wilhelm Melchior (Valery Bukreev), she hears news of his passing. This sends ripples throughout the industry, as he was seen as revolutionary to many. This is a devastating blow for Maria, to have a man who has crafted her career now be gone leads to her having to reevaluate her life.

Director: Olivier Assayas
Cast: Juliette Binoche, Kristen Stewart, Chloe Grace Moretz
Country: France, Germany, Switzerland
Genre: Drama


Olivier Assayas: Beyond Time (37:46, 16x9 HD):
This lengthy chat with the director, speaking in English, matches the quality of Criterion's previous releases: elaborative and paced deliberately, properly spaced out with clips from Clouds of Sils Maria an other films. He discusses working with Juliette Binoche and his writing process, the things that go untouched by the passage of time, and the parallels between his film and Ingmar Bergman's Persona. He then gets to the meat of the film itself, discussing how he wanted the feel of picking up in the middle of a story during the opening train sequence and how Assayas landed on Kristen Stewart as the supporting actress, as well as the chronology of the shooting schedule. It's an interesting chat that sports that nice flow Criterion has become so good at from general discussion about the filmmakers' origins to the nitty-gritty about the focal film itself.

Juliette Binoche and Kristen Stewart: Parallel Lives - Fiction and Reality in Clouds of Sils Maria (37:46, 16x9 HD):
The interview time with Binoche and Stewart is chopped up and edited together into somewhat correlating topics, delving into how they got started with Assayas with the film's conception, the origin and presence of their characters, and eventually into the experienced all three actresses have shared in their places among pop-culture. Binoche also discusses her characters weight and the revealing swimming scene, while they both touch on their deeper outlooks on the themes touched upon in the characters, as well as strong female figures in general and discussing the freer-form nature of Assayas' process.

• The Criterion Collection have also included the short 1923 documentary Cloud Phenomena of Maloja (10:23, 16x9 HD), from which footage was taken and used in Clouds of Sils Maria.

Theatrical Trailer (2:09, 16x9 HD).

DVD9 + DVD5 | NTSC 16:9 | 02:03:44 | 6.65 Gb + 3.76 Gb + 3% rec
Language: English-German
Subtitles: English

BD50 | 1080p AVC | 02:03:51 | 45.1 Gb + 3% rec
Language: English-German
Subtitles: English

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