Though best known for avant-garde works like The Seashell and the Clergyman and The Smiling Madame Beudet, lesbian filmmaker Germaine Dulac also made a number of features, like the beguiling and little-shown Princess Mandane, a loose adaptation of Pierre Benoît’s novel Forgetfulness and her final commercial production. “In my film,” Dulac once said, “Benoît’s hero becomes a victim of the cinema. His obsession with all the glorious adventures on the screen forces him to abandon his peaceful life and roam the world. He becomes transported into a country full of wonders, a marvelous kingdom ruled by a fairy princess. A moral ends the story: After many adventures, my hero prefers to find happiness in simplicity.” Though with this fable comes a final twist, a turn of events that, it has been argued, constitute one of the most explicitly sapphic moments in Dulac’s cinema. Print courtesy of the Centre national du cinéma et de l’image animée (CNC).
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