It’s said that it was Braunberger who pushed Rouch to shape the film into something closer to drama, but the way in which the film circumvents the requirements of fiction film is what makes it special... It created a template for how a film could conduct a complex internal dialogue using only the terms of its own fascination with beauty, romance, and young bodies. The difference is that it created it to explore a subject that few of the films that followed in its footsteps were ready to address.
With a keen eye for the human side of landscape (a grounded ship and an abandoned villa are virtual characters) and an avid tenderness for his performers, Rouch brings tremulous drama to a long and sinuous pan shot of young lovers leaving a party for a secluded nook—and they hit their spotlights with Hollywood aplomb. A tag ending, shot later on the Champs-Élysées, winks at “Breathless”—which Rouch strongly influenced.