Tuesday, September 22, 2009

I Heart Charlotte Gainsbourg

It's been awhile since I've written about a French actress so let's put a stop to that right now. Meet Charlotte Gainsbourg if you don't already know her.. It's been hard to avoid her if you like French or indie films as this has been a great decade for Gainsbourg. She's piled up a collection of interesting roles and has more on the way. She's balanced taking on everything from French romantic comedy to historical drama. There is a lot of buzz about her performance in the upcoming flamethrower of a film, Lars von Trier's Antichrist, so it doesn't look as if Gainsbourg is going to slow down anytime soon.

Gainsbourg, who is the daughter of influential singer-songwriter Serge Gainsbourg and English actress Jane Birkin, started the decade off right with My Wife Is An Actress (2001), a fun farce about relationships written and directed by her husband, Yvan Attal. She appeared in Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu's bleak fest 21 Grams and another French comedy Happily Ever After in 2003/2004. In 2006 Gainsbourg took on probably my favorite role of hers in Michel Gondry's surreal romance The Science of Sleep. I love that quirky film. I also liked the no-nonsense historical drama Golden Door (2006), a tale of immigrants trying to just get to New York and through the Ellis Island experience that wasn't always so welcoming.

Gainsbourg decided to go the route of her father in 2007 with the release of a record called "5.55." Unlike some other vanity projects by actors/actresses (the list is too long to go into but you know who these people are), Gainsbourg, who teamed up with the French electronic duo Air on the album, produced a quality album of moody French and English language songs. While not as good as Zooey Deschanel's foray into the music world (She & Him), this might be the second best recent release by an actor/actress trying to create music. The song "Beauty Mark" sealed Gainsbourg into my mind for a long time to come.

1 comment:

gwblack said...

Her new album releases shortly. Beck produces a few of the tracks.