Mario Ruspoli – Regards sur la folie (1962)

2wtx Mario Ruspoli   Regards sur la folie (1962)

29f7c043f76a2bde437fd0d52a185152 Mario Ruspoli   Regards sur la folie (1962)

L’aliénation mentale filmée en Lozère, à l’hôpital psychiatrique de Saint-Alban : constat sur les malades eux-mêmes et sur la patiente rééducation de leur cerveau par les psychiatres.

« C’est un film sur l’impossibilité de montrer la folie, explique Mario Ruspoli dans un entretien accordé au Monde en 1962. Cependant, il est possible de faire passer derrière le miroir, d’utiliser comme tremplin, comme moyen de communication, l’angoisse, qui est le dénominateur commun entre le malade, le médecin et le public. Seul, ce dénominateur commun d’angoisse nous fait pénétrer à l’intérieur du monde de la folie. » Claude Mauriac confirme ces propos : « Parmi les malades non délirants dont la pensée demeure cohérente, les raseurs restent les raseurs. D’où des longueurs. Les autres, les enterrés vifs, font à l’arrière-plan les mêmes gestes toujours recommencés et, toute fraternité oubliée, nous avons peur, parce que nous nous sentons en danger. » Le documentariste explique ses méthodes : « Nous avons mis peu à peu notre technique au point et nous avons utilisé une équipe de trois extrêmement mobile qui permet de filmer en courant, le cas échéant : un cameraman, un homme pour la mise au point, un preneur de son. Pour les interviews dans les fermes, j’ai pensé que si on prenait un interviewer de l’extérieur, les paysans ne diraient rien ; je suis donc arrivé avec des gens du milieu : un docteur, un curé, un instituteur agricole itinérant. L’important, c’est que les gens s’habituent à vous, qu’ils vous connaissent, qu’ils aient de l’estime, de l’amitié pour vous. Il faut les mettre en confiance, il faut qu’ils sachent que vous n’allez pas les trahir, les ridiculiser, les fausser pour leur faire servir une thèse dans le style Mondo Cane. Il faut que les réalisateurs aient une fantastique conscience professionnelle. »
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Jeanne Balibar & Pierre Léon – Par exemple, Electre (2013)

5de3c4 Jeanne Balibar & Pierre Léon   Par exemple, Electre (2013)

29f7c043f76a2bde437fd0d52a185152 Jeanne Balibar & Pierre Léon   Par exemple, Electre (2013)


Balibar, well-known as an actress and singer, left none of her talents unused in her directing debut. In this eclectic homage to Greek tragedy, Balibar and Léon are free of any convention. With a cameo by Barbet Schroeder.

Jeanne Balibar and Pierre Léon roam in tourist outfits through Paris and prepare a play with a producer who keeps changing her clothes. In a parallel world, another layer if you wish, actors rehearse their texts for a Greek tragedy on the beach at Deauville and at prominent Parisian locations. It is the story of Electra, probably a rather inefficient character, one who perseveres and refuses to give up the battle against injustice.
This absurd, slightly surrealist and occasionally humorous film looks like a theatre performance with its solemn dialogues and mise-en-scène issues. The makers, the actress Balibar and filmmaker Léon, however also use the medium by inserting screenshots of business e-mails – reflections on their plans. In addition, Balibar is a singer and she sings the texts as if the e-mails were edifying lieder. Electra, for Instance is, as one of the characters puts it, a true ‘culture souq’.
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Claude Chabrol – Merci pour le chocolat (2000) (DVD)

rsll Claude Chabrol   Merci pour le chocolat (2000) (DVD)

29f7c043f76a2bde437fd0d52a185152 Claude Chabrol   Merci pour le chocolat (2000) (DVD)

When the young Jeanne finds out that she could have mistakenly been exchanged, from her cradle, with another newborn (the son of a famous piano player), she decides to contact this family, not really thinking that this could be the truth. After she tells this to the presumed father and the rest of the family, even the son of the piano player starts having more than one doubt about his origins, and all this will lead to the discovery of a murder committed many years before by the second wife of the musician. The story is a pretext to dramatize the misdeeds and the hypocrisy of the French upper class members, shown without pity: the coldness between the family members, hidden by a false happiness; the lack of real feelings; the unbearable ‘bon ton’ of the mother, and so on. (IMDb) Continue reading

Nicolas Rey – Schuss! (2005)

172be2 Nicolas Rey   Schuss! (2005)

A film that starts like an odd documentary on ski resorts suddenly declares its subject to be aluminum. And it’s all downhill from there, evoking in chapters the history of capitalism in the 20th century, the death of the God Progress in the valleys of the Alps and the question of the relationship between State and Industry. All’s fair in love and snow.
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Chris Marker – Sans soleil (1983) (HD)

bdxyr Chris Marker   Sans soleil (1983) (HD)

29f7c043f76a2bde437fd0d52a185152 Chris Marker   Sans soleil (1983) (HD)

Chris Marker, filmmaker, poet, novelist, photographer, editor, and now videographer and digital multimedia artist, has been challenging moviegoers, philosophers, and himself for years with his complex queries about time, memory, and the rapid advancement of life on this planet. Sans Soleil is his mind-bending free-form travelogue that journeys from Africa to Japan.
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Alain Resnais – Stavisky… (1974)

kx2ok Alain Resnais   Stavisky... (1974)

29f7c043f76a2bde437fd0d52a185152 Alain Resnais   Stavisky... (1974)

Director Alain Resnais’s STAVISKY… is a stylized recounting of the life of Alexandre Stavisky, a masterful swindler who sold thousands of worthless bonds, working his way into a massive financial hole and drowning in a riotous political scandal. The film focuses on his heyday, which came in the years just before his arrest and subsequent death in 1934. Surrounded by an aristocratic class of financiers who, like Stavisky, delighted in transferring enormous sums among a multitude of accounts around Europe, he was an expert at moving money. Stavisky inhabited the lavish wooden parlors and grandiose theaters of Paris, the ocean overpasses and casinos of Biarritz, with sexy cars, planes, and women to get him from place to place. The delectably glossy filming of STAVISKY…, like its dialogue, is sharp, pointed, tightly framed, and complex. Every scene contains a lingering spatial depth and a feeling of weighted drama, colored by flashbacks and dream sequences that are rendered with fragile grace. All the while, a narrator who watches through binocular lenses follows the subtle subplots of Stavisky’s love affairs, sporting affairs, and legal affairs. When Stavisky is arrested in the middle of a dinner party (reminiscent of Resnais’s LAST YEAR AT MARIENBAD with red wine spilled dramatically across the white tablecloth and a bejeweled woman in a cocktail dress careening through the air like a wounded bird), the ugly end is near. A thumping musical score from Stephen Sondheim completes this masterwork, sprinkling it with noirish spice.
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Louis Malle – Vive le Tour (1962)

ch16o Louis Malle   Vive le Tour (1962)

29f7c043f76a2bde437fd0d52a185152 Louis Malle   Vive le Tour (1962)

Vive le tour is director Louis Malle’s affectionate homage to one of France’s most treasured institutions, the Tour de France cycle race. In this short documentary film, Malle and his camera team marvellously capture the ambience of the Tour: the unbridled enthusiasm of the crowds of spectators, the beauty of the French countryside setting, and the gruelling ordeal of the participants.
We see how the cyclists refresh themselves during their marathon races, the sorry effects of dope-taking, the pain and disappointment of injured cyclists and, finally, the indescribable delight of the victors on the podium. With its eloquent and evocative photography, accompanied by Georges Delerue’s enchanting music, this is less a documentary and more a visual poem which says almost all there needs to be said on the greatest cycle race in the world. James Travers (filmsdefrance) Continue reading

pixel Louis Malle   Vive le Tour (1962)