Claude Chabrol John Belton - Essay

John Belton

(Contemporary Literary Criticism)

Claude Chabrol's Le Boucher explores the possibility (or impossibility) of love in a morally fatalistic universe. Working within the conventional context of a suspense thriller, the director creates a world limited by its characters' own perceptions and a love relationship restricted by the imperfect nature of that world.

Nevertheless, Chabrol's sympathetic direction of the story permits his characters a range of emotional expression—although inarticulated and tragically unrealized—that makes their frustrated love affair strangely beautiful. The director develops this love relationship on two levels: first, through the use of genre to define the ambivalent nature of their love and, second,...

(The entire section is 1199 words.)