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You Ain't Seen Nothin' Yet
Based on two works by the playwright Jean Anouilh,You Ain't Seen Nothin' Yet opens with a who's-who of French acting royalty (including Mathieu Amalric, Michel Piccoli and frequent Resnais muse Sabine Azema) being summoned to the reading of a late playwright's last will and testament. There, the playwright (Denis Podalydes)…
La bete humaine
Based on the classic Emile Zola novel, Jean Renoir's La bete humaine was one of the legendary director's greatest popular successes--and earned star Jean Gabin a permanent place in the hearts of his countrymen. Part poetic realism, part film noir, the film is a hard-boiled and suspenseful journey into the…
Europa
"You will now listen to my voice . . . On the count of ten you will be in Europa . . ." So begins Max von Sydow's opening narration to Lars von Trier's hypnoticEuropa (known in the U.S. as Zentropa), a fever dream in which American pacifist Leopold Kessler…
The Lower Depths
Jean Renoir and Akira Kurosawa, two of cinema's greatest directors, transform Maxim Gorky's classic proletariat play The Lower Depths in their own ways for their own times. Renoir, working amidst the rise of Hitler and the Popular Front in France, had need to take license with the dark nature of…
Les Miserables, Part 1
Hailed by film critics around the world as the greatest screen adapation of Victor Hugo's mammoth nineteenth-century novel, Raymond Bernard's dazzling, nearly five-hour Les miserables is a breathtaking tour de force, unfolding with the depth and detail of its source. Featuring stunning art direction and cinematography and unforgettable performances by…
Les Miserables, Part 2
Hailed by film critics around the world as the greatest screen adapation of Victor Hugo's mammoth nineteenth-century novel, Raymond Bernard's dazzling, nearly five-hour Les miserables is a breathtaking tour de force, unfolding with the depth and detail of its source. Featuring stunning art direction and cinematography and unforgettable performances by…
Les Miserables, Part 3
Hailed by film critics around the world as the greatest screen adapation of Victor Hugo's mammoth nineteenth-century novel, Raymond Bernard's dazzling, nearly five-hour Les miserables is a breathtaking tour de force, unfolding with the depth and detail of its source. Featuring stunning art direction and cinematography and unforgettable performances by…
Boudu Saved from Drowning
Michel Simon gives one of the most memorable performances in screen history as Boudu, a Parisian tramp who takes a suicidal plunge into the Seine and is rescued by a well-to-do bookseller, Edouard Lestingois (Charles Granval). The Lestingois family decides to take in the irrepressible bum, and he shows his…
The Rules of the Game
Considered one of the greatest films ever made, The Rules of the Game (La regle du jeu), by Jean Renoir, is a scathing critique of corrupt French society cloaked in a comedy of manners in which a weekend at a marquis' country chateau lays bare some ugly truths about a…
A Story of Floating Weeds
In 1959, Yasujiro Ozu remade his 1934 silent classic A Story of Floating Weeds in color with the celebrated cinematographer Kazuo Miyagawa (Rashomon, Ugetsu). Setting his later version in a seaside location, Ozu otherwise preserves the details of his elegantly simple plot wherein an aging actor returns to a small…
Belle de Jour
Catherine Deneuve's porcelain perfection hides a cracked interior in one of the actress's most iconic roles: Severine, a Paris housewife who begins secretly spending her afternoon hours working in a bordello. This surreal and erotic late-sixties daydream from provocateur for the ages Luis Bunuel is an examination of desire and…
Weekend
This scathing late-sixties satire from Jean-Luc Godard is one of cinema's great anarchic works. Determined to collect an inheritance from a dying relative, a bourgeois couple travel across the French countryside while civilization crashes and burns around them. Featuring a justly famous sequence in which the camera tracks along a…