Jules et Jim Henry Miller
Henry Miller interview 1/9 (youtube)
Came across this Henry Miller tube yesterday and it happend to be the anniversersaly of Miller’s death (June 7). For this post I will concentrate more on Miller and not on Jules et Jim. (See previous post for More Jeanne Moreau here)
On not mixing up the two films – Jules et Jim and Henry and June.
Note:Truffaut discovered Henri-Pierre Roche’s Jules et Jim and turned the book into a groundbraking french new wave film classic.
Helen Hessel is the woman in Jules and Jim, the 1953 novel by Henri-Pierre Roche, and of Truffaut’s 1956 film. “I am the girl who leaped into the Seine out of spite, who married his dear, generous Jules, and who, yes, shot Jim,” confesses Helen, after having attended, incognito, the film’s premiere. (From here, An amourous cyclone: sex, art, and romance)
Henry and June is adapted by Kaufman based on Anais Nin’s diaries.
Uma Thurman played June Miller.
But there are two facts that are very, very wrong and have to be corrected. One was that Anaïs Nin never, ever had a physical relationship with June Miller.
The second thing was that Hugh Guiler, her husband, was not the buffoon, the fool , the cuckold, the stupid, silly man that Phil Kaufman turned him into in that film. Hugh Guiler was an extremely sensitive, sophisticated man who knew everything that was going on but simply chose not to see it. So those two things notwithstanding, everything else in the film was pretty accurate.
“Henry and June” circulates as a lingerie webshop today.
(Anais Nin and Lawrence Durrell were closest friends of Miller.
Both writers were involved in father-daughter incest. Nin later found to be a bigamist – read Diedre Blair salon article linked above.)
Miller and Anais onetime worked as analysts under the guidance of Otto Rank in New York City.
Miller’s profile here.
Excerpt from “The Colossus of Maroussi”
One should not race along the Sacred Way in a motor-car – it is sacrilege. One should walk, walk as the men of old walked, and allow one’s whole being to become flooded with light. This is not a Christian highway; it was made by the feet of devout pagans on their way to initiation at Eleusis. There is no suffering, no martyrdom, no flagellation of the flesh connected with this processional artery.
Everything here speaks now, as it did centuries ago, of illumination, of blinding, joyous illumination. Light acquires a transcendental quality; it is not the light of the Mediterranean alone, it is something more, something unfathomable, something holy. Here the light penetrates directly to the soul, opens the doors and windows of the heart, makes one naked, exposed, isolated in a metaphysical bliss which makes everything clear without being known. No analysis can go on in this light: here the neurotic is either instantly healed or goes mad. Miller on Eleusis
It is hard to tell sometimes when Miller is being ironic and when he is being naïve. He is the master of a deadpan style, just as he has a public personality that alternates between quiet gentleness — “like a dentist,” he describes it — and a sort of deadpan buffoonery. This has led some critics to consider him a naïve writer, a “modern primitive,” like the painter Rousseau. In a sense this is true.
Miller is a very unliterary writer. He writes as if he had just invented the alphabet. When he writes about a book, he writes as if he were the first and only man who had ever read it — and, furthermore, as if it weren’t a book but a piece of the living meat whacked off Balzac or Rimbaud or whoever.