Bertrand Tavernier

Bertrand Tavernier – L’appât aka Fresh Bait (1995)

Three adolescents, a girl who serves as the priming and two boys, kill two men cold blooded who were known by the girl only for to steal the money of them. With the money the three want to open a shop for clothing in the United States. But their dream turns out to be more difficult to realize than the assassination.
Volker Boehm Read More »

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

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. Read More »

Bertrand Tavernier – La passion Béatrice AKA The Passion of Beatrice (1987)

Somewhere in France during the Middle Ages. Béatrice is impatient to see her father return from English captivity. She doesn’t expect however that the father whom she loves from distance will be the most hateful person who will submit her and her family to abuse and humiliation. Read More »

Bertrand Tavernier – Voyage à travers le cinéma français AKA My Journey Through French Cinema (2016)


Synopsis wrote:
Bertrand Tavernier’s personal journey through French cinema, from films he enjoyed as a boy to his own early career, told through portraits of key creative figures.

Embark on an cinematic experience with writer-director Bertrand Tavernier’s personal voyage through French cinema. Tavernier explores the auteurs from the 1930s up to his own first breakout feature in 1974, The Clockmaker of St. Paul.

Included in the analysis are the contributions of directors such as Jacques Becker and François Truffaut and actors such as Jean Renoir and Jean Gabin balanced with those of lesser known French filmmakers who have also illuminated emotions and revealed surprising truths. Hundreds of clips comprise this magnificent tribute to French filmmakers, scriptwriters, actors, and musicians with rare and behind the-scenes insights that are eye-opening, scandalous and funny.

Tavernier’s dissection draws a reference line to the influences of American cinema at the time. Read More »

Bertrand Tavernier – Des enfants gâtés AKA Spoiled Children (1977)


Some films cry out to be made. Others whisper, and some just offer the tiniest, weariest shrug. ”Spoiled Children,” which opened yesterday at the Public Theater, is one of the latter. Its main character is a film director who rents an apartment in which he plans to create his latest screenplay. While living in the apartment, he joins the tenants’ committee, has a desultory affair with a woman much younger than he, pays visits to his wife that are even more desultory, and otherwise whiles away time.

This director, Bernard (Michel Piccoli), appears to be assembling material for his film with an arty randomness, selecting occasional snippets of his own experience and shaping his screenplay around them. He even has a collaborator, who chimes in ”It’s strange how the cemeteries in Berlin are colder than elsewhere.” The collaborator then proclaims the remark ”Great!” and wonders how he can wedge it into the film. Bertrand Tavernier, the film’s director, may have worked in much the same way. Read More »

Bertrand Tavernier – Une semaine de vacances AKA A Week’s Vacation (1980)


Here are some ways that Bettrand Tavernier, in production notes for his new film ”A Week’s Vacation,” describes his film: ”A portrait of a woman against the background of almost murmured questions that concern us all, approached without didacticism.” ”A laughing fit before you realize it’s going to snow.” ”An old man who knows a lot.” ”A motorcycle engine more familiar than a Moliere play.” ”A letter you read at the end of summer.” Read More »

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. Read More »