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A Room in Town, 1982 – ★★★½

Not one of Demy’s masterpieces, but still quite good. It’s a little less graceful than The Umbrellas of Cherbourg and as a result it perhaps lives in that movie’s shadow — “ah, yes, the other Demy in which all the dialogue is sung.” Well worth taking on its own terms, though.

The thing is, it’s deeply political. The doomed romance doesn’t work without the tension of the strike and the class struggle. Demy isn’t subtle about this. The relationships are all driven by money, need for money, or (privileged) rejection of money. Also there’s a swastika on the doorway in the film’s final scene, visible right after the confrontation with the cops, and Demy always has too much control over his sets for that to be an accident. “All Cops Are Bastards” in French.

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