Under the Sand

Under the Sand, a delicate and devastating film from director Francois Ozon, features one of the best performances of the year, by Charlotte Rampling. The British actress, fifty-six and never more beautiful, plays Marie, a recent widow who can't accept the fact of her husband's death. On the beach near their summer house, Marie's husband, Jean (Bruno Cremer), had gone for a swim and never returned. Back in Paris at her teaching job, Marie nearly unravels. Ozon tells this haunting story with potent finesse. Marie uses humor, anger and sex to build a wall around her grief. It's a role of fierce demands, and Rampling meets them all. In a summer of crass, Rampling is a true class act.

From The Archives Issue 294: June 28, 1979