The Green Ray (1986)

Directed by Éric Rohmer

A lonely Parisian woman comes to terms with her isolation and anxieties during a long summer vacation.

Despite its outdated emphasis on women finding a “mate” in order to feel whole, The Green Ray still speaks to a universal need to be understood. Sometimes that kind of validation required in young adulthood is found in — yes, why not? — a romantic partner. Certainly none of Delphine’s friends — virtually all of them women — understands what she’s going through. Merely pointing out her depression isn’t useful. But if The Green Ray were made today, Delphine’s search might well lead her to a woman friend who “gets” her. As it is, Delphine’s friends and acquaintances aren’t on her wavelength; she desires something more profound from conversation, but her fellow Parisians want summer relaxation. They don’t crave nuanced philosophical interaction. They want to make jokes and eat pork chops.

Tina Hassannia (Village Voice)