Posts Tagged by The Green Ray
|October 28, 2018||Posted By Gregory Nagy listed under By Gregory Nagy, H24H||
2018.10.28 | By Gregory Nagy
§0. It is summer. A young woman and a young man are sitting side by side at a beachfront, looking out toward the vast sea that is facing them. They aim their gaze westward, viewing what seems like an infinite stretch of water that reaches all the way to the darkening horizon where the sea finally meets an infinite sky. As they watch the sun sink slowly into the sea, the young woman starts weeping. Then, suddenly, at the very moment when the glowing orb finally goes under, it gives off a subtle green flash. This is the green ray, which is a literal translation of the French words le rayon vert. The moment I am describing takes place in a film directed by Éric Rohmer, which actually bears the title Le Rayon Vert. It originally appeared in 1986. But Le Rayon-Vert is also the title of a romantic novel by Jules Verne, which appeared over a century earlier, in 1882. The novel was in fact the original inspiration for the film, though the stories differ radically. In the film, the story ends on a seemingly happy note: once she sees the green ray, the young woman who was weeping a moment earlier is now smiling as she cries out: oui ! But the happiness of this moment marked by the outcry of ‘yes!’ is not what interests me the most in this film: rather, I will highlight the earlier moment of weeping.
[Essay continues here…]