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Life is a Bed of Roses

PG Released Apr 20, 1983 1h 50m Comedy Drama List
78% Tomatometer 9 Reviews 44% Audience Score 250+ Ratings
Three tales set in the same castle. In the first, Count Michel Forbek builds a castle in which he tries to create a utopian society by strange means. Years later, an educational conference occurs in the castle in which trysts take precedence over education and Nora Winkle makes predictions about her friend's relationship. Finally, children in the castle create a fantastical story about medieval times. Read More Read Less

Critics Reviews

View All (9) Critics Reviews
Time Out Resnais speculates on the utopian dream that life is infinitely perfectable, that human chaos, despair and horror can be spirited or educated out of existence. There are two stories, to correspond to each of these possibilities. Jun 30, 2007 Full Review Dave Kehr Chicago Reader The material manages at once to be both precious and dry, the staging is unprofitably claustrophobic, and the structure less ingenious than arbitrary. Jun 30, 2007 Full Review Janet Maslin New York Times It's more memorable for various isolated witticisms and images than it is as a coherent whole. And its flightier touches can be deadly. Rated: 2.5/5 Jun 30, 2007 Full Review Nicholas Bell IONCINEMA.com Eventually, the playfulness feels like pretentiousness without much substance, though fans of Demy may appreciate the random songs the film breaks into. Rated: 3.5/5 Oct 21, 2020 Full Review TV Guide A unique and funny film from intellectual French director Resnais. Rated: 3/4 Jun 21, 2010 Full Review Fernando F. Croce CinePassion Utopia is folly, though human fluidity here is the stuff of both Wagnerian myth and Gallic farce Feb 14, 2010 Full Review Read all reviews

Audience Reviews

View All (8) audience reviews
Audience Member good inter-connecting storylines Rated 3 out of 5 stars 02/25/23 Full Review Audience Member A tad exaggerated in the hands of Resais but I understand what he is trying to give credit to. Lovely to watch if slightly over done. Rated 2.5 out of 5 stars 01/13/23 Full Review Audience Member Im beginning to think that while Godard is the more historically important film maker, he was always been foremost a "critic", whose main aim was to create webs of references and change our ways of veiwing cinema as an art, andd though I have allot of respect and admiration for his work and the role of criticism in general, the poetry, politcs, and philosophy his characters often talk about second-hand is fully embodied in the films of Alian Resnais, who managed to absob Godard's self-awarness, but also to transcend it. Godard was always taking notes, while Resnais was writing essays(or so Ive come to feel of late). This is a strange, but brilliant multi-storied, pseudo-musical, about the role of fantasy and imagination. A wealthy Utopian group in the early 1900's builds an elaborate castle called "The City Of Happiness", where they can try to be "reborn" through a series of esoteric rituals like Jodorwosky's "Holy Mountain", while years later when the structure has become a boarding school a group of educators have a conference on the role of imagiantion in education. Several children who have remained at the school during the conference run around and imagine a world of knights and dragons and monsters. The three stories are edited together sublimely bouncing and contrasting their themes of off one another, in funny, insightful, and emotionally engaging ways. Rated 4.5 out of 5 stars 02/18/23 Full Review Audience Member So I thought I Want to Go Home was just an aberration for Resnais, but unfortunately I was wrong. This is every bit as over the top, but at least here the cartoon-like characterizations fit better into the children's fairytale-musical context. The humor works pretty well at first but it eventually gets tiresome and plain silly. The three parallel narratives are well juxtaposed together and thematically consistent. In the end the whole farcical arguing and fighting and seducing bullshit didn't do anything for me. Rated 2 out of 5 stars 01/18/23 Full Review Audience Member Pseudo-musical de trasfondo filosófico. Demasido friki hasta para mi. Rated 2 out of 5 stars 02/27/23 Full Review Audience Member Hard to understand but engaging. Renais is the most creative director in the history of cinema. Rated 4 out of 5 stars 02/02/23 Full Review Read all reviews
Life is a Bed of Roses

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Cast & Crew

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Movie Info

Synopsis Three tales set in the same castle. In the first, Count Michel Forbek builds a castle in which he tries to create a utopian society by strange means. Years later, an educational conference occurs in the castle in which trysts take precedence over education and Nora Winkle makes predictions about her friend's relationship. Finally, children in the castle create a fantastical story about medieval times.
Director
Alain Resnais
Producer
Philippe Dussart
Screenwriter
Jean Gruault
Distributor
Universal Pictures
Production Co
Fideline Films, Films A2, Les Films Ariane, Soprofilms [fr], Filmédis
Rating
PG
Genre
Comedy, Drama
Original Language
Canadian French
Release Date (Theaters)
Apr 20, 1983, Original
Release Date (Streaming)
Jul 21, 2015
Runtime
1h 50m