Over the centuries, the Muse, known as the goddess of creativity, has been depicted as an angel who manifests herself to an artist hard at work. Many of us have experienced her presence as a figure outside of ourselves or as a force within us. In this engagingly fanciful film written and directed by Paul Auster (The Music of Chance), Martin Frost (David Thewlis) retreats to the country home of friends after finishing a novel that took three years to complete. He savors the silence and the solitude until one morning he awakens to find an attractive woman there; she calls herself Claire (Irene Jacob). They have frisky sex, and he is buoyed by her love of his work. She claims to be the niece of the woman who owns the house but Martin later learns she has not been telling the truth about who she is. By the time he questions her about her identity, he is madly in love with her.
Auster calls this drama a philosophical mystery, and it embraces such themes as the creative process, love, and imagination. The closing section of the film veers off into more mystifications, including the presence of another writer (Michael Imperioli) and a stunningly beautiful relative of his (Sophie Auster).
Screened at the New Directors/New Films Festival, New York City, March 2007.