STRANGE LAUGHTER by Pierre Molaine


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From the French, this is a grotesque of haunted minds which projects the racking agony of dementia in a prose often as uncontrolled as its victims. Here, in a small asylum, Old Max, Coselli and Bebert Blancpain find solidarity in their illness- but it is Bebert who is near normalcy and a release, which brings with it some threat from the past. He also falls in love with Jany, a nurse there- and the wife of Coselli who no longer remembers or identifies her. Sequences of violence mount- from the attacks in which Max and Coselli are beyond reach, to Jany's suicide, and finally to the coming of the police with a warrant for Bebert-which discloses his past as an agitator and forces his flight from the asylum.... A montage of convulsive distortion and torment for which compassion is an occasional balm.... Limited.

Pub Date: April 6th, 1953
Publisher: Roy