Yves Robert – Le Grand blond avec une chaussure noire aka The Tall Blond Man with One Black Shoe (1972)

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Two factions of the French Secret Service involve a seemingly normal orchestra player, Francois Perrin, into their battle as one side uses him as a decoy. Soon, agents are all over the place, and one of them, Christine, is sent to seduce Francois. Meanwhile, Francois has his own problems, tangled up in an affair with his best friend’s wife. Continue reading

François Reichenbach & Frédéric Rossif – Portrait: Orson Welles (1968)

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A famous French documentary director has chosen to match his talents with those of a powerful subject who talks on his youth, his formative years, his life and work. Reichenbach on Welles on Welles, one might say.

These recollections help to explain something of the creative processes of film making, comparing the behaviour of Welles the director and Welles the man. Orson at home, Orson interviewed at the Cannes Festival, Orson shooting a scene with Jeanne Moreau… Orson in portrait. No less. (MIFF) Continue reading

Laurent Perreau – La bête curieuse AKA The Odd Girl (2017)

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Following a long prison term, 30 year-old Céline must find a place in society. Hiding her past, she introduces herself with a new identity to get work for a trial period in a hotel. Céline finds herself endlessly walking a tightrope between truth and fiction. When she meets Idir, despite the threat of being unmasked, Céline falls in love and finds herself a prisoner to her own lies. But how can one live without taking risks? Continue reading

F.J. Ossang – Zona Inquinata ou La vie n’est plus qu’une sale histoire de cowboys (1983)

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A dirty deal between cowboys. The fight between the Texan Benz, head of a gang of assassins, and Captain Mort, his right-hand man.

La Zone – the poor, dangerous quarters of Paris (George Lacombe, 1928); the administrative zone where Orpheus looks for his lost Eurydice (Jean Cocteau, 1950); Interzone – the working title for Naked Lunch (W.S. Burroughs, 1959). In 1983, Ossang created a synthesis of all these territories of unrest under a banner of dead colours. Continue reading

Abel Gance – La Roue (1923)

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Flicker Alley says…

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Never before released in the United States, this monumental French film is one of the most extraordinary achievements in the whole history of cinema. Written and directed by Abel Gance (Napoleon, J’Accuse), three years in production, and for its time unprecedented in length and complexity of emotion, La Roue pushed the frontiers of film art beyond all previous efforts. Said Gance, “Cinema endows man with a new sense. It is the music of light. He listens with his eyes.” Continue reading