Spotlight: Isabelle Huppert
First appearing on screen in 1971, Isabelle Huppert has amassed more than 130 credits over the course of a remarkable and varied career. Indeed, she is considered by many to be the finest screen actress of her generation, having worked with many of the greatest directors of the postwar era. Whether in her famous extended collaborations with Claude Chabrol and Michael Haneke or in one-off partnerships with a who’s who of contemporary notables, Huppert is famous for her icy intelligence, intensity of affect, and subtlety of craft. Though her consistency is beyond dispute, it would be neglectful in the extreme to pigeonhole this fearless actress; while she can indeed be ruthless and inscrutable as she famously is in films such as Haneke’s The Piano Teacher, she is equally at home conducting amorous combat in Maurice Pialat’s Loulou or participating in the merry madcap antics of Serge Bozon’s Tip Top. Huppert, who has won and/or been nominated for innumerable awards, remains in a class of her own.
In The Piano Teacher, Isabelle Huppert gives one of cinema's most fearless performances as a piano instructor at a Viennese conservatory whose repressed fantasy life precipitates a series of increasingly aberrant sexual outbursts.
In Catherine Breillat’s autobiographical Abuse of Weakness, Isabelle Huppert plays a film director progressively scammed out of a sizeable amount of money by a charming con man, who takes advantage of her after her debilitating stroke.
One of her earliest star turns, The Lacemaker features Isabelle Huppert playing a reserved young hairstylist who experiences the tragic fall-out from an abortive first love.
Isabelle Huppert flexes her comic muscles in Serge Bozon’s Tip Top, a topical madcap screwball detective story set in a suburb of the northern French city of Lille.
Sandrine Bonnaire and Isabelle Huppert become fast friends with deadly results in La cérémonie, master auteur Claude Chabrol’s sinister black comedy inspired by the same true events as Jean Genet’s The Maids.