Edgardo Cozarinsky ’s pioneering film essay, La guerre d’un seul homme (“One Man’s War”), combined newsreels from the Nazi occupation of Paris with extracts from the diaries of the writer Ernst Junger, at the time Military Governor of the French capital. The effect is both disturbing and illuminating as to the kind of constructions and truth-claims involved in the newsreel and the diary. Made in exile in France, during the harshest period of the military dictatorship in Cozarinsky’s native Argentina, the ethical and political implications go well beyond what happened in France during World War II. Read More »
Tag Archives: Niels Arestrup
Citizen Langlois by Edgardo Cozarinsky is an essayistic documentary about Henri Langlois, founder and head of the Cinémathèque française until his death in 1977. I recently rewatched this along with Jacques Richard’s much longer documentary (which is also on the tracker –here–) and liked it even better than the time I saw it first at the Berlin festival some years ago.
The movie mostly consists of archive footage, showing Langlois, the musée du cinéma, collaborators and famous actors and directors. The events around the Affaire Langlois in 1968 take some time here, too, but Cozarinsky succeeds in finding a different angle to focus on Langlois and cinéphilia in general. Read More »
Malik El Djebena is just 19 when he is sent to prison for six years. Immediately, he falls in with a group of Corsican prisoners who rule the roost. From his experiences with these hardened criminals, Malik learns some invaluable lessons and sets about building his own network… Read More »
As the Allies march toward Paris in the summer of 1944, Hitler gives orders that the French capital should not fall into enemy hands, or if it does, then ‘only as a field of rubble’. The person assigned to carry out this barbaric act is Wehrmacht commander of Greater Paris, General Dietrich von Choltitz, who already has mines planted on the Eiffel Tower, in the Louvre and Notre Dame and on the bridges over the Seine. Nothing should be left as a reminder of the city’s former glory. However, at dawn on 25 August, Swedish Consul General Raoul Nordling steals into German headquarters through a secret underground tunnel and there starts a tension-filled game of cat and mouse as Nordling tries to persuade Choltitz to abandon his plan. Read More »
Based on the 1836 novel by Balzac (wiki)
Script-writers who adapt Balzac or Dostoievsky excuse the idiotic transformations they impose on the works from which they construct their scenarios by pleading that the cinema is incapable of rendering every psychological or metaphysical overtone. In their hands, Balzac becomes a collection of engravings in which fashion has the most important place, and Dostoievsky suddenly begins to resemble the novels of Joseph Kessel, with Russian-style drinking-bouts in night-clubs and troika races in the snow. Well, the only cause of these compressions is laziness and lack of imagination. The cinema of today is capable of expressing any kind of reality. What interests us is the creation of this new language. (…) The fundamental problem of the cinema is how to express thought.
Alexandre Astruc, The Birth of a New Avant-Barde: La Camera-Stylo (1948) Read More »
This is the story of a couple who do not want to have children of their own, and a pregnant, single woman who needs a home for awhile, the relationship between the three protagonists is strange, at the very least. After Anna (Hanna Schygulla) and Gordon (Niels Arestrup) invite the expecting Malvina (Ornella Muti) to live with them, Anna becomes neurotically jealous and attempts suicide but is thwarted and in the end decides she really wants to be there for the baby when he/she comes into the world. Rather than trying to get rid of Malvina and the baby, both Gordon and Anna are in agreement on keeping it. Read More »