Say what you may about Roman Polanski’s personal life; professionally, the man is brilliant. I love the eerie feel he lends to each movie he directs (ever seen his version of Macbeth?). Whatever he does as a director has resulted in some of my favorite films. When I watched The Tenant for the first time, it was everything I wanted in a movie. I love confusing, unsettling psychological thrillers – something American directors haven’t embraced as readily as their European counterparts. Polanski, with his trilogy about the terrors of urban dwelling, masters this type of film. The trilogy is comprised of Rosemary’s Baby, The Tenant, and Repulsion.
The Tenant is an examination of urban living and subsequent paranoia, of the housing crisis in Paris and resulting human behavior. As a viewer, I was uneasy for the entire length of the movie – something guaranteed to draw me further into a film. I greatly appreciate the mundane used as an avenue for revolting, almost spectral happenings. Polanski not only directed, but also starred in the picture.
Noteworthy in the film is actress Isabelle Adjani as love interest, Stella. She’s a quintessential French leading lady, with her enormous pout and eyes. I adore her faux-fur trimmed jacket, multiple rings, and giant glasses.
I’ll spare you my retelling of the plot (I’m so frequently guilty of giving away too much information!) and instead leave you with the film’s trailer and several still shots of the beautiful Ms. Adjani.
(click photos for sources!)