Tag Archives: Simone Signoret

Jeanne Moreau – L’adolescente (1979)

“The summer of 1939. Marie, at 13, goes with her parents to visit her grandmother in a small town near Avignon. Although rumors of war reach the countryside, it’s an idyllic place. Marie’s parents are constantly making love. Surrounded by sexual frankness, Marie fancies herself a woman and develops a crush on Alexander, the town’s young Jewish doctor. She’s despondent when he treats her as if she were a child. After Marie’s father abruptly leaves for a few weeks to assist with a relative’s harvest, Marie’s mother and the doctor disappear into the woods for hours at a time. Marie tries to spy on them. When dad returns, what will the family and the doctor do?” Read More »

François Leterrier – Les mauvais coups aka Naked Autumn (1961)

An ex-racing driver (Reginald Kernan) lives in the country with his aging wife (Simone Signoret). They spend their days quarrelling and baiting each other, and making up uneasily before starting again. The new village school teacher (Alexandra Stewart) enters the scene, threatening to upset the love-hate balance of the couple. Read More »

Pierre Granier-Deferre – L’Etoile du Nord AKA The North Star (1982)

Synopsis:
Edouard Binet, an aimless Frenchman, has been travelling in North Africa for many years, and is sailing to Belgium. En route, he meets Sylvie Baron. He introduces her to Nemrod Lobetoum, a rich Egyptian carrying valuable jewelry, and Sylvie and Nemrod become friends. Their friendship escalates to love, which makes Edouard jealous. Days later, Edouard arrives at a rooming house owned by Mme. Louise Baron, Sylvie’s mother, wearing blood-stained clothes. It appears that Nemrod was killed on a train after he arrived in France, but Edouard denies any knowledge of what happened. Sylvie suspects that Edouard is responsible for Nemrod’s death, but by now her mother has become Edouard’s ally. Read More »

Raymond Rouleau – Les sorcières de Salem AKA The Crucible (1957)

Salem, 1692. Industrious farmer, John Proctor, has twice made love to 17-year-old Abigail, a youth he and his wife have taken in. (His wife Elisabeth has rebuffed him for seven months; she is puritanical and cold.) When she finds John and Abigail embracing, she sends the lass from her home and John, feeling damned, agrees. Abigail vows revenge. Her chance comes when she accuses Elisabeth of witchcraft and manipulates younger girls to support her claims of seeing spirits. The town’s minister and politicians want a cause: ridding the town of witchcraft is the ideal repression. John too, is accused; Abigail offers him a way to avoid hanging. Elisabeth has her own confession. Read More »

Jack Clayton – Room at the Top (1959)

Synopsis:
The English factory town is dreary but Joe Lampton has landed a job with a future. To have something to do at night he joins a theatrical group. His boss’s daughter Susan is playing ingenue roles on stage and in real life. She is attracted to Joe and Joe thinks about how much faster he will get ahead if he is the boss’s son-in-law. This plan is complicated by his strong desire to be with an older woman who also belongs to the theatrical group. She is French and unhappily married. Joe believes he can get away with seeing both women. Read More »

Chris Marker & Pierre Lhomme – Le joli mai AKA The Lovely Month of May (1963) (HD)

Filmed just after the March ceasefire between France and Algeria, LE JOLI MAI documents Paris during a turning point in French history: the first time since 1939 that France was not involved in any war.

Part I, “A Prayer from the Eiffel Tower,” documents personal attitudes and feelings around Paris. A salesman feels free only when he is driving his car, and then only if there is not too much traffic. A working-class mother of eight has just gotten the larger apartment that she had been wanting for years. The space capsule of American astronaut John Glenn is examined by a group of admiring children. Two investors talk about their careers and adventures. A couple in love since their teens discuss the possibility of eternal happiness. At a middle class wedding banquet, the guests are raucous while the bride is quiet, dignified and reserved. Read More »

Charles Crichton – Against the Wind (1948)

Brief synopsis
Philip Elliot, refugee Belgian priest, reports to a secret school in London for spies and saboteurs behind German lines. After training, he and two others parachute into Belgium to help destroy a records office. This mission leads to German capture of an important resistance leader; four more agents (Emile, Max, Scotty, and Michele) go in on a rescue mission. But one of them is a traitor; and other things go wrong… Read More »