Bertrand Tavernier – L.627 (1992)


After recently watching Bertrand Tavernier’s “In the Electric Mist”, that film made me miss “L.627” all the more. While “In the Electric Mist” isn’t a complete failure, it’s mixture of Southern gothic, hard boiled detective novels and clunky exposition doesn’t seem to represent the best of Tavernier’s senses. A French filmmaker not afraid to put himself on the line and film a quintessential “American” story (see “Round Midnight”, even though it documents the musician’s exploits in France), Tavernier’s 1992 film “L.627” is his masterpiece…. and still not available for digestion on region 1 DVD. Continue reading

Bertrand Tavernier – Coup de torchon [+Extras] (1981)


Synopsis :

1938, in a French african colony. Lucien Cordier is the cop of this village,
populated with blacks and a few whites (usually racialist and lustful). He
is a washout, everyone (including his wife Huguette) humiliates him. He
never arrests anyone and looks at elsewhere when a dirty trick occurs. But
one day, he turns into a machiavellian exterminating angel. Continue reading

Bertrand Tavernier – I Wake Up, Dreaming (1993)

The essential question arises: how do you express routine and habit, essentially anti-dramatic notions which are organic to this job? How do you film a job so it becomes the only source of dramatization?

A few visual ground rules are established: respect the different colours of street lighting (yellows and blues), not correct or soften them; eliminate as far as possible any descriptive shots and particularly any framing that over dramatizes an action; stay with the cops and see what they see when they tail or pursue suspects; never leave the point of view of the pursuer; refuse all stylistic effects inherent in the thriller genre; stick to the characters, follow their rhythm, reflect the routine and unstable nature of their life, and think at the same time as they do. A difficult choice, because the audience has a thousand formal, ideological references in its head – American references in particular: promotion of individualism, rejection of collective spirit, predominance of plot. I want to overturn these references. Continue reading

Bertrand Tavernier – In the Electric Mist (2009)

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A detective tracking a serial killer who preys on young women finds his investigation complicated by a glamorous Hollywood starlet and a ruthless crime kingpin in director Bertrand Tavernier’s adaptation of the James Lee Burke novel In the Electric Mist with Confederate Dead. Continue reading