Tag: Paris

The 400 Blows (Les Quatre Cents Coups)

The first of five semi-autobiographical François Truffaut films – also his debut – that star Jean-Pierre Léaud as Antoine Doinel, a young Parisian boy whose journey from neglected, mis-treated youth to juvenile petty criminal is profoundly moving and wonderfully acted. The opening sequence sets 1950s Paris up as a kind of playground, and it remains […]

0577 | À Bout De Souffle (Breathless)

[Note: this is the sixth film in my 2016 Blind Spot series. For a list of the other well-known or well-respected films I’ve already watched or I’m going to be watching for the first time this year, see this post.] When Jean-Luc Godard decided to make his feature-length debut Breathless in 1960, he famously turned […]

0555 | Fantômas

[Note: The 1913/1914 Fantômas serial by Louis Feuillade is actually a collection of five films ranging from 60 to 90 minutes in length, but I’m just posting one review here. For the record the five films I watched were Fantômas I: À l’ombre de la guillotine (Fantômas: In the Shadow of the Guillotine) (1913); Fantômas […]

0542 | Dheepan

Jacques Audiard’s latest caused a stir in 2015 when it won the Palme d’Or, with a number of critics suggesting the award should have gone to a more deserving film, Son Of Saul and The Assassin being the ones championed loudest. Dheepan‘s arrival on these shores has been met with general appreciation, though, even if […]

0537 | Du Rififi Chez Les Hommes (Rififi)

Often referred to as the finest heist movie ever made, Jules Dassin’s Rififi was developed while the American noir director was living in France, having found himself on the Hollywood blacklist a year or so earlier. Dassin came across Auguste Le Breton’s slang-filled crime novel of the same name, and though he was initially skeptical […]

0527 | Bastille Day

Alarm bells start to ring when one of the opening scenes in a modern crime film features a law enforcement agent receiving a dressing down from his superiors (because he’s reckless and insubordinate, of course, and his behaviour endangers the lives of others). Unfortunately this action thriller – directed by James Watkins (Eden Lake) and […]

0519 | Eden (Second Viewing)

Mia Hansen-Løve’s Eden was my favourite film of 2015 (and if you have the time and the inclination you can read my first review of it here), so re-watching it has been high on my agenda since I picked up the special featureless-DVD the other week. I enjoyed it nearly as much the second time […]

0464 | Le Dernier Diamant (The Last Diamond)

This new release is the fifth film by French director Éric Barbier, but the first that I’ve seen. It’s a heist movie set in Paris and Antwerp, starring Yvan Attal as a safecracking jewel thief and Bérénice Bejo as the exhibitor / seller of a 137-carat diamond, and it spends a lot of time following […]

0333 | Eden

The fourth feature-length film by French director and screenwriter Mia Hansen-Løve is less a celebration of the church of dance – though it is at times a paean to clubbing and its inherent vices, particularly in the first of its two parts – and more a bittersweet tale about moderate success, moderate failure, gain and loss, spanning a period of twenty years and […]

0283 | Bande De Filles (Girlhood)

The international title of this film has made many think, quite naturally, of Richard Linklater’s Boyhood, and you could argue either way about this being or not being a counterpoint to 2014’s most praised American film. One thing’s for certain: a counterpoint was not the intention of director Céline Sciamma when she made this critically-lauded French indie, yet the question […]

0261 | Everyone Says I Love You

This entertaining mid-90s musical comedy was one of the late Roger Ebert’s favourite Woody Allen films. In his review at the time of release Ebert indicated that Everyone Says I Love You might actually be his number one, and although that view was seemingly tempered by a little distance, by 2001 he still considered it among the director’s finest. And, quite […]

0146 | La Haine (Hate)

When Mathieu Kassovitz’s brutal inner-city drama La Haine was released in 1995, the film’s reach extended beyond the usual confines of the cinema and its patrons. Alain Juppé, the French Prime Minister at the time, commissioned a special screening of the movie which all cabinet ministers were required to attend, and although the government announced that […]