Why we should re-read the movie Rue des Boutiques that Patrick Modiano obscures

Why we should re-read the movie Rue des Boutiques that Patrick Modiano obscures

Best award in Goncourt – Author and critic Paul Constant stresses the many qualities of this “meticulously conducted investigation” with an astonishing result.

Paul Constant is a literary critic and novelist. Especially author of Pure spirit (Grand Prize for the French Academy novel 1989) and Confidence pours trust (Goncourt Award, 1998), was elected to the Goncourt Academy in 2013.


Modiano’s work is a complete set, from one novel to the next, in which the author investigates a character who looks like him and ends up being reincarnated into the writer he is. This is the other that he sees reflected in the final novel and that he seeks again in the novel to write. For those who haven’t read it yet, all you have to do is seize the opportunity, long after Goncourt, long after the Nobel Prize, for this edition of figaro Then back in romantic time with the help of the wonderful Quarto that Editions Gallimard has dedicated to him. They will not miss out on this powerful CV, pedigreewhere absence holds space as much as presence, and fullness as much as emptiness.

see also – Paul Constant: “Modiano is really cool”

Goncourts had a lucky hand in the coronation Dark Shop StreetHis fifth novel in which the hero is declared in the first sentence: “I’m nothing” And after a few lines: “I’m on the trail…a trace from the past…” Nothing is better than a detective, who, following in his footsteps, finds the thread of his life with the tricks of his profession. Nothing better than having a novelist present to a person with amnesia all the characters and situations he can slip into during this investigation.

Who is this Guy Rowland that a Baltic baron has employed in his police agency: a child of a large family, a companion of a cosmopolitan society, a night owl familiar to Demi Monde, a South American diplomat, Dennis’ lover, a beautiful model who has disappeared by her side…? Nobody recognizes him, nobody remembers him, even if by stories told to him and where he appears only sideways, a lost dog without a collar, he always takes himself to someone else. What did Jay Rowland experience in the turbulent age of secrecy, black market and cooperation, when his most threatening friends obtained fake passports at South American embassies and left Paris for refuge in Megève?

Because they are immutable geographical monuments and because their names are so many landmarks of a fate mired in a turbulent moment in history, the streets of Paris connect them to the past. For Modiano and his hero, to travel through them is to cling to the truth of what has disappeared. And the fear that leaves its mark throughout the book, which the hero experiences in all possible tones, from apprehension and anxiety to anguish and panic, makes clear that what is hidden or forgotten is a tragedy that can only be resolved internally.

It is the art of a great writer to tell several stories at the same time, at least to divide them, to enrich them in relation to one another.

Dark Shop Street It’s not just a meticulously conducted investigation that leads us as an excellent investigator to an amazing conclusion, or a puzzle in which the player ends up recombining scattered pieces to show us what was in front of us, it’s also an important narrative. Behind the character’s search for himself, the author perhaps discovers his father, who is elegant, tall, dark in color and with a fine mustache, in an environment where all the characters are present and where Porfirio Ruberosa played his own part by handing out Dominican passports. And in the steamy blondes whose sweet and peppery scents lead to the ghost of Denis, it would not be surprising to find the image of the author’s mother, an actress of Flemish origin whose long and brutal absence digs a black hole and represents disappearance.

It is the art of a great writer to tell several stories at the same time, at least to divide them, to enrich them in relation to one another. It is the art of a great writer to support his field with another. With Modiano, the painter is present in the play of light and shadow or in still shots that slow and stop motion to leave us, like Hopper, waiting, tearing, escaping. Quand son héros s’extrait d’un lieu clos qui l’angoisse et se dirige vers une fenêtre pour observer le paysage, cette fenêtre devient le cadre d’une scène mystérieuse que l’auteur nous laisse contemple horse alé que not yet.

Basically, for the novelist, it is a matter of engaging all the people, the landscape, the streets he is able to view, in a piece of music in which we find the same melodic parts from one book to the ‘other’.

Patrick Modiano

The novel in Modiano does not end with the novel. By writing it, the novelist has already cast his imagination into another story that would extend or expand the previous imagination. Investigating a fact, bringing out details or introducing a character goes back to the initial absence that must be resolved at all costs through the abused childhood wounds and scarred memories of dreams. Modiano is aware of the fragmentation of his work and the impossibility of completing it. As he writes: “Essentially, for the novelist, it is a matter of engaging all the people, the landscape, the streets he is able to view, in a piece of music where we find the same melodic parts from one book to the next, but the musical score which seems to him imperfect.

And to Bernard Pivot, whom I ask about his admiration for Modiano, to conclude: “He has lived a hundred years and is a man who lives on tiptoe!”

airline. 8: Patrick Modiano – Boutiqaat Street is obscured. ISBN 978-2-8105-0950-8. Retail price: €12.90 – 192 p. Published June 16, 2022 on newsstands (June 30, 2022 in bookstores).

You can get this book from the Le Meilleur du Prix Goncourt collection. At a price of 12.90 euros.

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