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Model Shop

A glorious restoration of Jacques Demy’s only American film, a stylish late-1960s exploration of superficiality and voyeurism with Anouk Aimée.

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  • Director-Producer Jacques Demy
  • Screenwriters Jacques Demy, Carole Eastman
  • With Anouk Aimée, Gary Lockwood, Alexandra Hay, Carole Cole, Tom Holland
  • USA 1969
  • 90 mins
  • UK distribution Park Circus

Jacque Demy’s (Parapluies de Cherbourg) rosy long-distance relationship with American musicals becomes a disconsolate, ephemeral yearning in this, his only American film. Model Shop is a road movie that doesn’t go anywhere. Time is marked by the presence of the Vietnam War, by the Draft hanging over the heads of men and by the need to make loan repayments. George, an aspiring architect who refuses to design anything less than the Empire State building, spends his day driving around LA to avoid the repossession of his green MG. He impulsively follows an enigmatic French woman (Anouk Aimée), who poses scantily-clad for lonely voyeurs at a photographic studio. Their eventual encounter reveals her to be the titular showgirl from Demy’s debut film Lola. This glorious 4K digital restoration by Grover Crisp at Sony Columbia does full justice to the evocative location photography and the wigged-out score by psychedelic rock band Spirit.

Clare Stewart

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