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Les Amants du Pont-Neuf director Leos Carax, 1991 Overview The big-budget love story between two young vagrants, set on the Pont-Neuf when it was closed for repairs in 1989, is a showcase for some stunning visuals. The impressive mise en scène and spectacular backdrop include the bi-centennial celebrations of the French Revolution. This perhaps allows the film to be read as a state-of-the-nation movie about homelessness and alienation in the symbolic heart of the capital as the country celebrates its nationhood. The early sequences include some gritty cinéma-vérité realism shot on location among the homeless. The dominant style, however, is magical and symbolic rather than realistic. Three years in the making, and vastly over-budget, the film received a lot of advance publicity as the most expensive French movie ever made (100 million francs). Critical reviews were mixed. Cahiers du Cinéma devoted an entire issue to the film. (In contrast to the journal’s low opinion of Besson and Bein...