Alex Kong at n+1:
THE CHARACTERS in Éric Rohmer’s films seem to be perpetually vacationing—an activity they elevate into an art form. A Rohmer holiday is languorous and leisurely, stretching on until it’s described in terms that barely make sense. The vacationers compute how much time is left not in days, but in entire months. They often run out of things to do. Sometimes they complain that their vacations are too long—which to an American sensibility can only register as a category mistake, like trying to claim the number 3 is red. This exquisitely dilated temporality seems like a dispatch from an alien planet—but if we were pressed to attach a name to it, a good one might be: social democracy. There’s a morbid anthropological interest in observing this vanished, inaccessible system, which in my more pessimistic moments strikes me as more fantastical than anything out of Buñuel.