Catherine Deneuve has made five films with André Téchiné, more than with any other director she has worked with in her long career: Hôtel des Amériques, Le Lieu du crime/Scene of the Crime, Ma saison préférée/My Favourite Season, Les Voleurs/Thieves and Les Temps qui changent. In order to investigate the meanings of this connection, this chapter examines the established literature in film studies on Deneuve's star persona. The relationship between art and popular cinema in Deneuve's output can also be expressed in terms of the distinction between 'star' and acteur fétiche. Aspects of the pre-existing Deneuve persona (autonomous, empowered) happily encounter Téchiné's narratives of change, transformation, plurality, and becoming. Finally, and to take a distance from questions of stardom and acting technique, it is possible to see in the supremely cinematic Deneuve face one of the best examples of what Deleuze and Guattari call visagéité, or facialisation.
This introduction presents an overview of the key concepts discussed in the subsequent chapters of this book. The book considers memory as a specific framework for the study of popular film, intervening in growing debates about the status and function of memory in cultural life and discourse. It examines the relationship between official and popular history and the constitution of memory narratives in and around the production and consumption of American cinema. The book explores the political stakes of cinematic discourse in its production of national memory. It also examines the discursive and institutional apparatus that has come to support the memory of Classic Hollywood in British cultural life. The book also considers both the presence of music and colour in nostalgia films of the 1990s and the impact of digital and video technologies on the representational determinants of mediated memory.