Yodeling Boy lanza nueva canción ‘Famous’ Signs With Atlantic Records

Bueno, no me llevó mucho tiempo. Mason Ramsey, de once años, también conocido como Walmart Yodeling Kid, firmó un contrato con Atlantic Records y Big Loud el viernes y anunció el lanzamiento de su sencillo debut «Famous».

«He estado en Nashville un par de veces, pero nunca pensé que esto sucedería», dijo Ramsey. “Es un sueño firmar con Atlantic y Big Loud. Me encantó grabar «Famous» y no puedo esperar a que todos lo escuchen. «

La aparición de Ramsey en un Walmart en Kentucky cerca de su casa en Harrisburg, Illinois, se hizo viral a principios de este mes, actuando en Ellen DeGeneres Show, el Festival de Música y Arte de Coachella Valley 2018 y el escenario del concierto Grand Ole Opry conocido en Nashville.

Hoy volverá al programa de entrevistas de Ellen DeGeneres para celebrar su gran noticia con una actuación de «Famous». Esta noche, se unirá con Tyler Hubbard de Florida Georgia Line y Brian Kelley para cantarlos nuevamente como cabezas de cartel en Stagecoach en Indio. California.

«Me encantó el video que se volvió viral, y después de pasar tiempo con Mason, supe que era una estrella», dijo Ian Cripps, vicepresidente de A&R en Atlantic Records. “Tiene el talento y la capacidad emocional para sentir realmente una canción y cantarla desde su alma. Tengo la suerte de tener la oportunidad de trabajar con él y su familia para desarrollar su carrera. Coachella, diligencia … mundo, aquí viene. «

«En el momento en que Mason y su familia entraron en Big Loud, supe que teníamos que trabajar con él», agregó Seth England, socio de Big Loud. “Es una estrella, pero sobre todo es un chico sensato que ama la música country. Los Ramsey son una familia increíble de un pequeño pueblo en el sur de Illinois, como yo. Los entendimos y sus objetivos y simplemente nos enamoramos de su historia y visión. Me gustaría agradecer especialmente a Julie Greenwald, Craig Kallman, Ian Cripps y Jeff Levin de Atlantic por creer en Big Loud como socio para este proyecto. Sin ti eso nunca hubiera sucedido y estamos eternamente agradecidos. Sobre todo, me gustaría agradecer a The Ramsey, Danny Kang y Dan Awad por confiar en Big Loud y Atlantic para acompañarlos en este viaje. «

El video musical de «Famous» se está produciendo actualmente. Joey Moi (Florida Georgia Line, Jake Owen) y Corey Crowder (Chris Young) produjeron la canción, que fue escrita por Hubbard, Corey Crowder, Sarah Buxton y Canaan Smith.

«Famous» está disponible hoy en todos los DSP y servicios de transmisión aquí.

Vea a Ramsey entrando en el escenario de Grand Ole Opry en el «Show de Ellen DeGeneres» en el clip de arriba.

James Cameron apareció en línea para la revisión de «Avengers»

Cameron se ha vuelto viral por decirle a Indiewire que espera que la industria tenga fatiga «Avenger» pronto.

James Cameron siente la ira de Internet después de que un comentario que hizo a IndieWire que critica al Marvel Cinematic Universe se haya vuelto viral. Mientras promociona su próxima serie de AMC «James Cameron’s Science Fiction Story», el director de «Titanic» y «Avatar» espera que la industria esté harta de la historia de los Vengadores porque «también hay otras historias». diciendo da «.

«Espero que pronto nos cansemos de Avenger», dijo Cameron. «No es que no me gusten las películas. Son solo niños, hay otras historias además de hombres hipergonadales para contar sin que las familias hagan cosas que desafíen a la muerte durante dos horas y destruyan ciudades. ¡Es como, oy!»

Los comentarios de Cameron causaron inmediatamente una reacción violenta en línea. Muchos fanáticos encontraron la ironía de que Cameron estaba presionando para «otras historias» mientras filmaba cuatro secuelas de «Avatar» y producía el próximo «Terminator». La declaración incluso llegó al jefe de Marvel, Kevin Feige, gracias a Vulture, pero Feige no deja que Cameron lo derroque antes del lanzamiento de «Avengers: Infinity War».

«Uh, ¡él ama las películas!» Dijo Feige, enfocándose solo en la parte positiva de la declaración de Cameron. «¡Esto es genial! ¡Guau, a James Cameron le encantan nuestras películas! ¡Es emocionante!»

El comentario «Avengers» no es la única vez que Cameron ha tenido una discusión controvertida recientemente. El director llegó a los titulares el año pasado por criticar a «Wonder Woman» al decir que la película estaba entrando en un territorio desconocido y destacó el «traje de corpiño muy ajustado» de Gal Gadot.

Lea la entrevista completa de Cameron con IndieWire aquí. La primera de las cuatro secuelas de «Avatar» de Cameron está programada para ser lanzada el 18 de diciembre de 2020.

Registrarse: Manténgase al día sobre las últimas noticias de cine y televisión! Regístrese para recibir nuestro boletín electrónico aquí.

Los 6 remedios caseros más efectivos para las sibilancias

Las sibilancias no son un problema de salud en sí mismo, pero pueden alterar su calidad de vida hasta cierto punto. Afortunadamente, este sonido agudo puede tratarse con la ayuda de algunos remedios caseros.

Los 6 remedios caseros más efectivos para las sibilancias

Las sibilancias no son un problema de salud en sí mismo, pero pueden alterar la calidad de su vida.

DESTACAR

  1. Las sibilancias no son en sí mismas un problema de salud.
  2. Las sibilancias generalmente ocurren cuando se desarrolla moco en la tráquea
  3. Las vías respiratorias bloqueadas pueden ocurrir debido a fumar

No hay palabras para explicar lo molesto que es ese sonido agudo que ocurre cuando exhalas. Bueno, así es como son las sibilancias. Cuando las vías respiratorias se vuelven estrechas y obstruidas, este sonido se produce durante la exhalación. Como resultado, la respiración se vuelve difícil y puede sentir una sensación de opresión en el pecho. Las sibilancias no son un problema de salud en sí mismo, pero pueden alterar su calidad de vida hasta cierto punto. Afortunadamente, este sonido agudo puede tratarse con la ayuda de algunos remedios caseros.

Aquí hay una lista de los 6 remedios caseros más efectivos que pueden ayudarlo a deshacerse de las sibilancias en poco tiempo.

1. Bebe líquidos calientes

Las sibilancias generalmente ocurren cuando se desarrolla moco en la tráquea. Beber líquidos calientes puede facilitar esto para usted. Puede ayudar a descomponer la mucosidad y prevenir la obstrucción de las vías respiratorias. Puede beber agua caliente después de aproximadamente una hora para prevenir esta afección. El té de hierbas también puede darte alivio.

té de hierbas

El té de hierbas puede aliviar las sibilancias
Crédito de la foto: iStock

2. miel

La miel tiene propiedades antibacterianas y antiinflamatorias que evitan la aparición de infecciones. Las bacterias que causan tos y provocan sibilancias pueden tratarse con este eficaz remedio casero. Elimina la flema de los bronquios y mejora la inmunidad general. Simplemente tome una cucharadita de miel con una pizca de canela en polvo para eliminar las sibilancias.

miel

La miel tiene propiedades antibacterianas.
Crédito de la foto: iStock

3. Deja de fumar

Las vías respiratorias bloqueadas también pueden ocurrir por fumar y no solo nos estamos refiriendo al tabaquismo pasivo. Fumar pasivamente también puede perturbar la tráquea. Un estudio reciente muestra que los niños expuestos al humo de segunda mano tienen más probabilidades de sufrir ataques de asma e infecciones respiratorias que el resto. Y no solo se debe al humo del cigarrillo; El humo de las chimeneas y barbacoas y otras fuentes no relacionadas con el tabaco también puede ser muy dañino.

smoking

Fumar puede causar sibilancias
Crédito de la foto: iStock

4. terapia de vapor

La terapia de vapor es una excelente manera de aliviar las vías respiratorias bloqueadas. La inhalación de vapor ayuda a disolver la flema y humidifica el tracto respiratorio para facilitar la respiración. Simplemente hierva un litro de agua y agregue unas gotas de aceite de eucalipto e inhale el vapor durante unos 10 minutos. La terapia de vapor es una de las formas más efectivas para eliminar las sibilancias y otros problemas respiratorios.

vapor

La terapia de vapor puede proporcionar alivio
Crédito de la foto: iStock

5. Cebollas crudas

El contenido de azufre de las cebollas crudas tiene un efecto antimicrobiano en el cuerpo que ayuda a combatir las infecciones de manera efectiva. Agregue solo unas pocas cebollas crudas a sus comidas; También puede tenerlos por separado. Esto ayudará a minimizar la inflamación en los pulmones y abrir las vías respiratorias bloqueadas, por lo tanto, tratar las sibilancias.

cebollas para el cabello

Las cebollas crudas podrían ayudar con las sibilancias
Crédito de la foto: iStock

6. Masaje con aceite de mostaza

mostaza

El masaje con aceite de mostaza puede tratar las sibilancias
Crédito de la foto: iStock

Descargo de responsabilidad: este contenido incluye recomendaciones genérico Solo información. De ninguna manera es un sustituto calificado opinión médica Siempre consulte a un especialista o a su médico para obtener más información. NDTV no asume ninguna responsabilidad por esta información.


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Se ha descubierto que los inhibidores de PDE5 como Viagra® y Cialis® tienen el potencial de ser utilizados para el tratamiento del cáncer

La clase de medicamentos actualmente recetados para el tratamiento de la disfunción eréctil en hombres ha sido destacada en un nuevo estudio clínico publicado hoy en el Open Access Journal de su potencial para ser incluido en nuevos ensayos de medicamentos contra el cáncer. ecancermedicalscience.

El documento es el último lanzamiento del proyecto ReDO (Repurposing Drugs in Oncology), una colaboración internacional entre el Anticancer Fund, Bélgica y GlobalCures de los Estados Unidos.

Dado el alto costo de los nuevos medicamentos contra el cáncer que enfrentan los gobiernos de todo el mundo, la misión del Fondo contra el Cáncer es descubrir qué medicamentos comúnmente disponibles (y de bajo costo) tienen un potencial sin salvar vidas.

En su trabajo, los investigadores encontraron que los inhibidores selectivos de la fosfodiesterasa 5 (PDE5) tienen el potencial de ser utilizados en nuevos ensayos de drogas. Estos inhibidores de PDE5 son una clase de medicamentos que incluyen sildenafil, tadalafil y vardenafil (mejor conocidos bajo los nombres de marca Viagra®, Cialis® y Levitra®).

«En muchos sentidos, el sildenafil es la última historia de éxito», dice el Dr. Pan Pantziarka del Fondo Anticancerígeno. «Originalmente se desarrolló para la angina de pecho, para la disfunción eréctil y luego nuevamente para la hipertensión arterial pulmonar, y ahora tiene el potencial de usarse nuevamente como un medicamento contra el cáncer».

Al igual que muchas otras drogas que el proyecto Reutilización de Drogas en Oncología (ReDO) ha presentado en publicaciones en ecancermedicalscienceLos inhibidores de PDE5 muestran una amplia gama de mecanismos de acción en varios tipos de cáncer, como. B. Glioblastoma multiforme: una enfermedad rara en la que se necesitan urgentemente avances clínicamente significativos.

«Los inhibidores de los puntos de control han cambiado radicalmente el panorama en oncología, pero aún existen desafíos importantes para aumentar el número y la duración de las reacciones», explica Pantziarka.

«La nueva evidencia resumida en este artículo sugiere que los inhibidores de PDE5 pueden ser un mecanismo para hacer esto».

«Sería irónico si la clave para mejorar los resultados de algunos de los medicamentos más caros en oncología fuera reutilizar algunos de los medicamentos no oncológicos más baratos».

El documento también examina el problema de que la búsqueda de nuevos medicamentos que puedan cruzar la barrera hematoencefálica es un desafío que limita severamente el rango de medicamentos disponibles para tratar los tumores cerebrales. Existe evidencia de que los medicamentos que actualmente no están aprobados para el tratamiento del cáncer, como los inhibidores PDE5, pueden aumentar la permeabilidad para mejorar el suministro de medicamentos a los tumores cerebrales, lo que podría abrir la puerta a nuevas opciones terapéuticas para los pacientes.

El documento contiene una amplia gama de datos preclínicos y clínicos que se han agrupado y presentado para demostrar el caso de que estos inhibidores de PDE5 comercialmente disponibles y ampliamente utilizados son candidatos muy fuertes para su reutilización como agentes anticancerígenos.

Estos medicamentos de bajo costo y baja toxicidad pueden incluirse potencialmente en el estándar actual y emergente de los tratamientos de atención oncológica.

Los investigadores esperan que este documento acerque el potencial de esta clase de medicamentos a los médicos e investigadores involucrados en ensayos clínicos. Se están llevando a cabo una serie de pequeños estudios iniciales, pero el grupo ReDO cree que es hora de que los estudios de eficacia mucho más grandes cumplan plenamente la promesa de estos medicamentos baratos y reutilizados.

El trabajo anterior del proyecto ReDO examinó cómo los medicamentos comunes y económicos, como los betabloqueantes y los antifúngicos, pueden ser «mal utilizados» y utilizados en el contexto de tratamientos contra el cáncer.

Fuente de la historia:

Materiales proporcionados por ecancermedicalscience. Nota: El contenido se puede editar según el estilo y la longitud.

¿Regresará Dennis a «Siempre hace sol»? Glenn Howerton ‘puede confirmar’ (video)

¿Glenn Howerton sabe si su personaje Dennis Reynolds regresará para la temporada 13 de «It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia»? Claro! ¿Te lo confirmará? Absolutamente no Ugh

Howerton, actualmente protagonista de la nueva comedia de NBC «AP Bio» lanzada por «Late Late Show» para no brindarnos absolutamente ninguna información nueva sobre la participación de su alter ego en el próximo episodio de la serie FXX. Pero como lo hizo de la manera más «Dennis», lo perdonaremos por eso.

El moderador James Corden le hizo al actor la pregunta que todos queríamos hacerle (y de hecho seguimos preguntándole) ya que su personaje hizo una salida permanente de la comedia de larga data al final de la temporada 12: ¿Puede confirmar que volverá?

«Sí, puedo confirmarlo», dijo Howerton a una audiencia que lo vitoreaba. «Pero no lo haré». Aw, ratas.

«Sí, él sí, puede volver, o no o no», agregó Howerton. «Y será genial. Y, pero puedo confirmar que volverá o no».

Los comentarios del actor siguen a una entrevista reciente que su coprotagonista «It’s Always Sunny», Kaitlin Olson, tuvo con TheWrap ellos confirmó que Dennis aparecería en al menos algunos episodios de la temporada 13.

Poco después de que se publicara la entrevista la semana pasada, Howerton fue a Twitter para recibir los comentarios de Olson.

«Lo siento chicos, pero ese pájaro estúpido, estúpido y no volador no sabe qué decir», tuiteó Howerton, refiriéndose al personaje de Olson, Dee Reynolds, a quien los otros personajes a menudo comparan con un pájaro. «Dennis NO está confirmado para la temporada 13. Actualmente estamos escribiendo. Estén atentos «

«Aparentemente, un pájaro gritaba que Dennis había sido confirmado para la temporada 13», agregó en otro tuit. «No tenemos un pájaro en nuestros mecanógrafos. Las aves no saben nada».

Mira el clip de arriba y mira los tweets de Howerton a continuación.

La temporada 13 de «It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia» se estrenará el próximo año. Los lectores pueden ver Howerton en «A.P. de NBC Bio «, que se transmitirá a las 8: 30/7: 30c.

Las 100 mejores películas francesas de todos los tiempos.

El cine en lengua francesa cubre grandes partes de la historia, la geografía y el género. Las mejores películas francesas no son simplemente el producto de una persona francesa que trabaja en estrecha colaboración con un equipo francés. Representan la película como entelequia: un siglo de directores que tienen sus raíces en el código fuente de esta forma especial de narración de historias y la trascienden en áreas que son igualmente trascendentes y terribles. Por su propio bien. Porque es correcto hacer esto.

Si las películas en la lista a continuación, además del idioma francés, están unificadas, puede haber una corriente de innovación fundamental en los muchos años estudiados. Las visiones autorizadas se ocupan de Bélgica, Grecia, Polonia, Dinamarca, Taiwán, España, Italia, los Países Bajos y Senegal e informan a las entrañas prelapsarias del cine francés y convierten al país en un centro de cine internacional. Eso es algo básico.

A continuación tratamos de dar una introducción a las películas en francés desde una perspectiva en inglés y explorar las escuelas de pensamiento y las taxonomías exóticas que han definido lo que ha sido el cine francés desde la primera luna de George Méliès que se ríe a carcajadas en 1902, y lo que puede ser, pesadillas caníbales que dañan la piel de Grand Guignol, etc. La Nouvelle Vague: la de la orilla izquierda (Agnès Varda, su esposo Jacques Demy, Alain Resnais y Chris Marker), así como eso Folletos de cine Crew (Jean-Luc Godard, François Truffaut y Claude Chabrol): el thriller erótico francés, el horror deslumbrante (y agotador) de la nueva extremidad francesa, el colorido musical, la farsa social, el extenso thriller criminal, la verdad experimental, lo personal y lo personal. Documentales firmes: aunque muchas películas en esta lista han cambiado irrevocablemente nuestras ideas de lo que puede hacer el cine, lo que puede hacer, existen en el límite, en los límites, listas para probar los límites del gusto, la lógica y (im Fall of Chantal Akerman) Es hora de cuestionar y luego separar los sistemas y expectativas que estancan y oprimen a los artistas.

La película favorita de Pauline Kael parecía ser francesa, pero fue hecha por un nativo de Estonia (ver # 64), mientras que muchas de las llamadas películas «grandes» de Roger Ebert parecen ser elecciones francesas obvias, son para nuestra idea colectiva de lo que son , tan indeleble es una película valiosa. La crítica es importante para el cine francés, que a menudo es promovido por críticos de cine (Godard, Truffaut, Éric Rohmer, Jacques Rivette), cuyo amor los llevó a crear sus propios trabajos pioneros que combinan una calificación académica de alto nivel con la aceptación populista. En lo que respecta a estas películas, nunca nos alejamos demasiado de una necesidad básica de dirigirnos al público, incluso si los directores a veces parecen ir en contra del bien público. Deja que los franceses nos digan lo que necesitamos.

Las 100 películas que componen esta lista representan las mejores películas en francés. Cuanto más describimos lo que une estas películas, más perdemos de vista la amplitud de lo que realmente significa «película en francés». Cléo dice en la obra maestra de Varda: “Todo me queda bien. ¡Probándome me intoxica! “Que encuentres lo suficiente debajo como te convenga, que te embriague.


Director: Edouard Molinaro

las-cage-aux-folles.jpg

Apenas tan avanzado como hace 40 años La Cage aux Folles Todavía resuena con buenas intenciones y verdades de confrontación, un testimonio subversivo de la familia y el amor, envuelto en los trópicos y las expectativas de la farsa tradicional de estudio. Esto puede ser gracias al director Édouard Molinaro, quien arrastró la línea populista en la década de 1960 y principios de 1970, mientras sus colegas franceses se esforzaban por definir y redefinir la Nouvelle Vague, y separarse en bancos en lugar de estudios. La versión de Molinaro (que escribió junto con Poiret, Francis Veber y el productor Marcello Danon) es una adaptación sin complicaciones de la exitosa pieza de Jean Poiret, que se estrenó en 1973. Se caracteriza por la intimidad al eliminar estereotipos y prejuicios pieza por pieza y convertir cada idea presuntuosa o al revés o simplemente errónea de cómo funcionan las relaciones homosexuales: cómo las personas son homosexuales vivir– Simplemente conociendo a los personajes a través de sus reacciones ante una situación estresante y moralmente cargada. Renato Baldi (Ugo Tognazzi) posee el club nocturno de drag Saint-Tropez con su llamativo socio Albin (Michel Serrault), quien también es la estrella más prominente del club nocturno. Cuando el hijo de Renato, Laurent (Rémi Laurent), a quien Renato engendró una vez con la madre separada de Laurent, recibe la noticia de que no solo está comprometido, sino que el padre de su prometido es un político ultraconservador, Renato hace planes para actuar como si él y Albin eran hermanos sanos y temerosos de Dios, lo que, por supuesto, no sale como estaba planeado, especialmente en sus intentos de fingir que Albin era un hombre heterosexual. Lo más probable es que la historia sea conocida por la mayoría de nosotros que nos preocupamos por los estadounidenses de Mike Nichol La jaula de pájaros (escrito por Elaine May), pero lo que es tan sutilmente sutil acerca de esta película que a menudo se pasa por alto en todos sus grandes personajes y una sátira más grande es que la película de Molinaro normaliza las relaciones homosexuales y las familias homosexuales sin romper el status quo adaptarse Para Laurent, Albin es más una madre que su madre biológica; El personal de apoyo y amor de La Cage aux Folles es más familiar, cercano y amoroso que los nucleares que Laurent intenta engañar. Todo esto se presenta a Molinaro de manera simple y cálida, con el amplio sentido del humor y el encanto sin fin que contribuyó al hecho de que la película se convirtió en un éxito de culto en los Estados Unidos a fines de la década de 1970 (y para los Globos de Oro y los Oscar en La pregunta vino). – Catedral de Sinacola



Director: Melanie Laurent

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Nada es más efectivo para sacar a un adolescente de su monótona rutina de la escuela secundaria que la llegada de un nuevo estudiante. Esta es la segunda película de la actriz / directora Mélanie Laurent. Respirar, consiste en: misterio y tentación, con montones generosos de rivalidad juvenil, despertar sexual y abuso verbal. Piensa en ello Respirar como primo europeo lejano de las tensas películas para adolescentes de Larry Clark y Catherine Hardwickes Trece: Historias de jóvenes en riesgo, soledad y estado de ánimo fugaz. Respirar presenta su perspectiva en el joven Charlie (Joséphine Japy), la imagen de un adolescente común y corriente para todos. Charlie vive con su gente en un tranquilo suburbio francés que es tan tranquilo y modesto como ella. Su madre (Isabelle Carré) discute con su padre sobre cuestiones de fidelidad matrimonial; Ella solo puede escapar de sus escaramuzas en la escuela, donde se detiene y al mismo tiempo disfruta de una popularidad baja pero estable entre sus amigos. En su mayoría son buenos niños, cariñosamente ruidosos y absolutamente seguros, y se mantienen al día con la normalidad prevaleciente de la vida de Charlie. Pero esta normalidad demuestra ser notablemente delicada: tan pronto como la extraña Sarah (Lou de La Age) ingresa a la clase de Charlie, su existencia mundana comienza a romperse. Laurent es tan bueno para superar las tensiones diplomáticas de las amistades femeninas que no nos importa cambiar el tenor cuando estalla la burbuja de Charlie y la película da un giro hacia lo macabro. (Además, tales historias rara vez terminan de manera diferente que en lágrimas). Respirar es una película sobre el amor no correspondido, no necesariamente amor romántico, sino amor confuso y ambiguo, el tipo de amor que es muy similar a una montaña rusa y deja a las personas que se sienten destruidas. – –Andy Crump



Director: Claude Chabrol

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El director Claude Chabrol a menudo se conoce como el Hitchcock francés, pero es una película como la problemática. La ceremonia muestra la clara diferencia entre los dos cineastas. Aunque Chabrol, como muchos directores franceses de New Wave, es un reconocido defensor del maestro de suspenso (después de escribir un estudio del trabajo de Hitchcock con Eric Rohmer), desarrolló su propio estilo más reservado. Mientras que La ceremonia Es una historia de tensión y drama psicológico, también actúa como un retrato de la lucha de clases y como un sutil estudio del personaje. Catherine (Jacqueline Bisset) contrata a Sophie (Sandrine Bonnaire) como empleada doméstica de la finca de su familia en las afueras de un pequeño pueblo francés. La familia está inicialmente satisfecha con el arduo trabajo de Sophie, hasta que su creciente aislamiento y analfabetismo secreto crean una brecha cada vez mayor para sus empleadores. Cuando una curiosa trabajadora postal (Isabelle Huppert) se hace amiga de ella, la tensión aumenta lentamente, lo que conduce a un clímax impactante. Cualquiera que busque emociones de Hitchcockian probablemente se decepcionará. Si bien Hitchcock aumentó su tensión al aumentar las operaciones en una situación intrínsecamente emocionante (identidad incorrecta, introducción temprana de un sociópata, etc.), el ritmo lento de Chabrol y las interacciones socialmente desagradables establecieron un tono alarmante. Es la naturaleza casual de la violencia definitiva lo que hace que la película sea tan efectiva. – –Tim Sheridan



Director: Bertrand Bonello

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Nocturama confía en su audiencia, incluso más de lo que su audiencia quiere confiar. Mientras tanto, el director Betrand Bonello dobla las líneas de tiempo, se entrega a flashbacks y recrea momentos desde diferentes perspectivas, rara vez con una advertencia, pero apenas sin precisión ni permanencia. Examina el mundo comparativamente pequeño de su película desde todos los ángulos e implica que es mucho más grande y más complicado. El mundo existe fuera de su visión ciertamente limitada. El tacto de Bonello no ofrece explicaciones; Su historia sigue a un grupo de hermosas adolescentes parisinas, que parecen representar una amplia área de la vida y participan en un ataque terrorista, desde la planificación hasta la ejecución cuidadosa, hasta los grandes almacenes de alta gama donde los adolescentes viven escondidos. mira cómo reacciona la ciudad. Bonello nunca permite que estos niños tengan un monólogo, una conversación o una anécdota para explicar por qué se han vuelto tan extremos: su comprensión política es tan alta como la de un estudiante universitario que descubrió recientemente a Noam Chomsky, y incluso estas creencias murmuran entre sí sin mucho compromiso. En cambio Nocturama todo es superficial, todo mirar: Los rostros de estas personas inocentes, mientras persiguen en silencio su terror, la tensión que surge cuando se sabe que hay mucho escondido detrás de estos rostros, pero también se puede ver mucho en estos rostros y entonces lo sabemos Nunca será experimentado. Porque estos adolescentes parecen buenos, incluso existenciales. Usted parecer De gama media, cómoda, libre de la pubertad, libre de hacer lo que quiera, con quien quiera, decir lo que quiera, y solo en los grandes almacenes, entre ropa de diseñador y artículos para el hogar caros y sin sentido, anhela más, posiblemente en París. explotar para no protestar, sino rogar ser parte de la élite que lo define. Esto no es terrorismo contra el capitalismo, sino para eso. Bonello confía en que su audiencia reconocerá la diferencia. – Catedral de Sinacola



Director: Pascal Laugier

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Horror francés, al menos el horror francés que se produce desde 2003 Alta tensión, tiene fama de derramar sangre en grandes cantidades y por métodos que podrían convertir a los galgos dedicados en hoark. (Francia produjo películas de terror mucho antes de que Alexandre Aja comenzara a superar los límites de la constitución humana con sus películas, pero no pretendamos que el horror francés no experimentó un cambio en la intención gráfica después de que su tercera película lo hiciera internacionalmente reconocible tenido.) Y entre otras cosas la publicaciónTensión Al elegir películas, puede elegir cuál de las más groseras, más incómodas y más dolorosas: Límite (s)por ejemplo o tal vez Dentro. Simplemente no puedes vencer a Pascal Laugier por nuestro dinero Mártir, una película sobre la trascendencia que logra alcanzar una forma de trascendencia misma; Así como la película trata sobre un culto burgués malicioso que mira más allá de nuestro propio mundo, Laugier también imagina una agonía coreografiada que es más explícita de lo que la mayoría de los fanáticos del terror se atreven. Describir Mártir como molesto y lo venderás por poco tiempo. Películas como esta, películas que queman sus imágenes para siempre en nuestros cerebros después de verlas, son raras en el cine, y en la mayoría de los casos este enfoque es agradable. Aquí es una pesadilla que Laugier probablemente quiso. Propósito Mártir es un anuncio innecesario, un esfuerzo de horror que probablemente debería considerar para la edificación y la finalización, pero es posible que no desee, siempre que sea del tipo que disfruta comer. – Andy Crump



Director: Jean Gremillon

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Hay una escena de danza folclórica ampliada en Maldone en el que Jean Grémillon parece encontrar todos los rincones imaginables. La deslumbrante dirección de Grémillon a lo largo de la película contrasta la vida simple con privilegios ricos con la trágica historia de un trabajador del canal (Charles Dullin) que deja de vivir en el país para administrar la propiedad de su familia. Genica Athanasiou brilla como la gitana que le queda y cuyo recuerdo no deja de perseguirlo. – –Jeremy Mathews



Director: George Méliès

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Mientras que Un viaje a la luna toma solo 15 minutos, todavía se siente épico (y este tiempo de ejecución no se consideró tan corto en 1902). Este brillante y colorido collage caprichoso (asegúrese de ver la versión restaurada pintada arriba) sigue una premisa que serviría a las películas de aventuras de ciencia ficción durante más de un siglo: la gente se embarca en un viaje y se vuelve loco abajo Con sus largos y escalonados escenarios y composiciones planas, la naturaleza primitiva de la película es obvia, pero Méliès lo compensa con encanto. Los espectadores modernos saben instintivamente cómo reconocer los trucos básicos de la cámara, especialmente cuando la perspectiva y la escala no son del todo correctas. Sin embargo, Méliès entendió sus límites, aceptó la hazaña y creó algo icónico con esta cara de luna que miraba un misil. – Jeremy Mathews



Director: Barbet Schroeder

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Roger Ebert criticó una vez esta película por no ser un «muy buen documental». Y eso es absolutamente correcto no esal menos en relación con el gobierno de tres años de Idi Amin sobre Uganda (en el momento de la filmación) o sobre la propia Uganda o sobre Amin como asesino en masa. Todavía General Idi Amin Dada: autorretrato es un retrato fascinante de cómo Amin se vio a sí mismo en 1974 y cómo Amin fue uno de los primeros creadores de mitos. La confianza en sí mismo de Amin es increíble: solo tres años después del golpe militar que lo llevó al poder, muestra un nivel de auto-ampliación que simplemente no parece posible. Esta imaginación se mantiene constante en todo momento, aunque la mayoría de las escenas de la película que se supone que demuestran el poder de Amin se han organizado claramente por el bien de las cámaras. Ojalá el director Barbet Schroeder hubiera hecho más con la sugerencia casual de la película de que Amin no solo es el resultado del colonialismo, sino también un reflejo de la ideología colonial occidental: en contexto, es una manera poco entusiasta de abordar el hecho de que esta película es más explotador que un argumento real, en el sentido de que esta es una mirada a cómo un asesino en masa podría presentarse al mundo, Autorretrato Es un estudio convincente sobre la (in) humanidad. – –Mark Abraham



Director: Jacques Tati

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Jacques Tatis son películas de abejorros metódicos, meticulosamente escenificados, que se mezclan de todas las formas posibles con un profundo desprecio por la modernidad, como estética, ideología, filosofía, como símbolo de los tiempos cambiantes. Llama a Tati un nostálgico o llámalo un viejo codicioso misericordioso que le roba al mundo la seguridad de su porche y ordena a todos los que estén cerca de su oído que salgan de su maldito césped, pero asegúrate de llamarlo un genio cómico cuando estés en eso. son también Ganó mucho: nos hizo un favor a todos para hacer las películas de M. Hulot, comenzando con Vacaciones del señor Hulot en 1953 y con Mi tio en 1958 Tiempo de juego en 1967 y Tráfico en 1971. De estos, Mi tio se siente más desesperado, incluso en los vertederos, y sirve como puente entre el sentimentalismo de Vacaciones del señor Hulot y la crítica social no disimulada de Tiempo de juego, su mayor película. Mi tio es juguetón, acogedor, divertido de principio a fin, una película que muestra el increíble talento de Tati para el humor visual y también sirve como una despedida melancólica para la Belle Époque. Contrasta la belleza del viejo París con la austeridad del nuevo París, sin carácter ni estilo. Nos encanta reírnos de la delicada incapacidad de Hulot, pero queremos llorar por la pérdida de las cualidades que hacen de la ciudad lo que es, eh, lo que era. – Andy Crump



Director: Luis Buñuel

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Roger Ebert describió la primera película de Luis Buñuel como una sombra de la lógica, un facsímil de la realidad: “Sabemos que el auto en el auto show no es (y no fue diseñado o construido por) el modelo de traje de baño al que apunta eso. «Ebert ofrece este concepto como un enfoque Un perro andaluz, una película que desafía el enfoque. Diseñado cuando Buñuel, que trabajaba en Francia bajo el director Jean Epstein, describió al expatriado español Salvador Dalí un sueño que tenía, visceral pero no limitado por límites narrativos.Un perro andaluz se convirtió en un intercambio entre dos hombres que luchaban con su subconsciente y trataban de restaurar las imágenes inquietantes empaladas por las más profundas redes de sus cerebros. El corte icónico del globo ocular; un hombre vestido de monja que sufre un ridículo accidente de bicicleta; una mano muerta repleta de hormigas que parecen ser transportadas por una herida de palma similar a Cristo; Dos burros muertos enredados en las entrañas de dos alas son tirados por un hombre junto a dos sacerdotes confundidos que intentan sentir a la mujer cuyo ojo pudo haber cortado la noche anterior durante ocho años, dos semanas o dos. – El sentido debe ser contrarrestado con el contrarismo, y todas las convenciones narrativas deben ser una mierda. En su metáfora para el auto show, Ebert habló sobre la causalidad, la resistencia de la película de 20 minutos a la forma en que las historias tradicionales (y nuestra idea de la realidad en cuatro dimensiones) muestran a los personajes haciendo cosas que hacen una línea cronológica. Sigue la acción y la reacción. Pero que hace Un perro andaluz Lo que es realmente aterrador es la comprensión de que el enfoque de Ebert de ver estas imágenes como «modelos» de un mundo reconocible apunta a un mayor poder en el juego. Una mano que llega sin nuestro conocimiento y sin nuestro consentimiento y manipula nuestras vidas. En última instancia, estamos expuestos a poderes mucho más allá de nuestro control. Casi no hay nada más aterrador que eso y con su debut que todavía es peligroso, Buñuel se aburrió en el corazón. – Catedral de Sinacola



Director: Jean-Pierre Jeunet

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Delicado y sabroso Amelie es una pequeña cosa francesa ligera y muy adorable. Con la cara de un ángel, el corazón de un niño y el corte de pelo de un elfo parisino, Amélie Poulain (Audrey Tautou) nos saca de quicio, mientras que Tautou cae en la conciencia estadounidense como la buena camarera que envía sus fotos, rompecabezas, rompecabezas y fotos. Enmascarar su identidad para hacer su primer encuentro, y su primer beso, el momento más romántico de su vida. Sus aventuras fantásticas, en nombre del acoplamiento idealizado e incluso cinematográfico, se desarrollan en vuelos de realismo mágico, en el que Jean-Pierre Jeunet sostiene el amor como algo mágico y mágico realista. – –Nick Marino



Directores: Vincent Paronnaud, Marjane Satrapi

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La adaptación animada de Marjane Satrapi de sus memorias gráficas encuentra humor negro en las contradicciones del totalitarismo. Persépolises tan canónico como tu libro. Satrapi y el codirector Vincent Paronnaud describen a Irán como un niño (a través de la revolución, la opresión y la expatriación) y transforman las líneas afiladas de sus ilustraciones en blanco y negro. Lleno de florituras exóticas, sombras sombreadas y personajes icónicos, el vocabulario de la película dibujada a mano es una extensión delicada y resonante del ojo de Satrapi. El personaje de Satrapi, con la voz de Chiara Mastroianni, es un personaje totalmente antiautoritario que llena la pantalla. Aunque principalmente Satrapi mirar Ella hace esto carismáticamente, en lugar de participar en la agitación en su país. «Cuando corres, tu trasero hace movimientos indecentes», dice un policía iraní. «¡Entonces deja de mirar mi trasero!» ella responde y sigue corriendo. En partes iguales, contrario y humanista, Persépolis– Menos como fue coloreado – se niega a ver nada en blanco y negro. – –Jesse Jarnow



Director: Olivier Assayas

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Después de que Olivier Assayas haya realizado varias películas sobre mujeres gatas que vuelan alrededor del mundo y se escabullen a través de edificios de vidrio y acero, vuelve a los intereses reservados de sus películas anteriores. Horas de verano. Cuando Hélène (Edith Scob) se reunió con sus hijos mayores y distantes en su antigua casa en la Francia rural, los hermanos recordaron haber crecido en la finca. Y si ella muere poco después, tienen que decidir qué hacer con la casa y su contenido después de que todos se hayan mudado. Las películas sobre familias a menudo muestran almas melancólicas, buscando debajo de las camas viejas cajas de zapatos con fotos rizadas y notas de gachas amarillentas. Assayas hizo una película completa en este momento: es una meditación sobre cómo los objetos llevan la historia, cómo reflejan nuestros huesos en descomposición, cómo a veces nos sobreviven. La película termina maravillosamente con una fiesta de rock organizada por la nieta de Hélène en la espaciosa propiedad: es un último respiro para la casa familiar, pero también una mirada conmovedora a una nueva generación que ocupa viejos espacios. – Robert Davis



Director: Louis Malle

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Antes de que los miembros del movimiento francés New Wave reinventaran el lenguaje cinematográfico con sus divertidos experimentos de género, comenzaron como críticos de cine. De hecho, el término «cine negro» fue bautizado por primera vez a través de sus escritos y debates para describir una raza particular de películas melancólicas de posguerra. Por lo tanto, no es sorprendente que Louis Malle, aunque no sea miembro oficial de New Wave, optaría por un proyecto de influencia negra como su primer largometraje. Actuar como tributo y subversión de la estructura de género, Ascensor a la horca Jeanne Moreau y Maurice Ronet interpretan a dos criminales, cuyo plan para matar al esposo de Florence Carala (Moreau) se desmorona rápidamente cuando el personaje de Ronet se queda atrapado en un ascensor. Este concepto ya absurdo se vuelve aún más confuso cuando se combina con la adaptación poco ortodoxa y experimental de la malle y el puntaje de jazz sombrío de la película, interpretada por nada menos que Miles Davis. – –Mark rozeman



Director: Sylvain Chomet

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Escucha los días increíblemente divertidos de silencio en el cine mudo, Los trillizos de Belleville es una película animada inventiva y encantadora que captura el espíritu de Jacques Tati (encarnado por los chistes que provienen de los dispositivos modernos más simples) y transmite el milagro vivido de un libro ilustrado para niños (personajes exagerados y colores llamativos). , que se completa con una sensación de sincronización perfecta: encontrar esa pausa evasiva que desencadena el lanzamiento de una fantástica carcajada, con las pocas partes del diálogo de la película en francés que son tan poco importantes que ni siquiera tienen subtítulos. Por supuesto, la película se burla de la obsesión estadounidense con el tamaño (y la gran comida), pero se burla de los franceses por igual, el efecto general, de tantas influencias que encuentran una representación tan equilibrada, no tan nostálgico como absolutamente cautivador. – –J. Robert Parks



Directores: Jean-Pierre Jeunet, Marc Caro

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Ron Perlman interpreta al héroe renuente como la estrella de circo llamada One, quien interpreta a su hermano pequeño adoptivo Denree (Joseph Lucien) como Marc Caro (Delicatessen) y Jean-Pierre Jeunet (Amelietambien Delicatessen) se unen para crear un universo distópico imaginativo. Ill (Daniel Emilfort), la creación malvada de un científico loco, está cosechando los sueños de los niños para mantenerse joven. Así que debes usar la ayuda de una ladrona huérfana de la calle (Judith Vittet) para encontrar a Denree secuestrada. Este sueño de fiebre steampunk está lleno de clones, gemelos siameses, pulgas de circo entrenadas y un culto cyborg llamado Cyclops. Los fanáticos de Terry Gilliam y Michel Gondry tienen mucho que ofrecer. – –Josh Jackson



Director: Alain Guiraudie

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Los thrillers y las películas de terror se han beneficiado durante mucho tiempo de su capacidad de yuxtaponer el sexo y la muerte. La mezcla de éxtasis y terror crea una combinación encantadora. (No es casualidad que todas estas películas de slasher estuvieran pobladas de bellezas exuberantes). Pero el melancólico thriller francés Extraño en el lago Es una cerveza particularmente fresca. Y si tomas prestado un principio de películas de terror, tiene lugar en un lugar idílico en medio de la nada. El autor y director Alain Guiraudie nos lleva a la campiña francesa, a una hermosa playa con vistas a un lago tranquilo y claro, que es un popular lugar de veraneo para los hombres homosexuales que buscan contactos casuales y no vinculantes. El visitante más nuevo es Franck (Pierre Deladonchamps), un joven apuesto que responde de inmediato a la belleza natural y las conquistas disponibles de la zona, lo que, por supuesto, esconde impulsos y secretos más oscuros. Guiraudie le da al procedimiento una distancia casi clínica y consecuentemente Extraño en el lago tiene un indicio de Hitchcock: en lugar de la rubia helada que seduce al actor principal, es un hombre sin camisa y buffy que corteja. Curiosamente, incluso el sexo es arruinado, tratado objetivamente. Guiraudie muestra repetidamente cómo Franck es ignorado fríamente por los otros hombres al ingresar a la playa, un pedazo de carne que debe evaluarse rápidamente y luego perseguirse o rechazarse como una posible conexión. La película está llena de jugos por su yuxtaposición inherente: la playa es muy acogedora, sin embargo, todos juzgan en silencio a todos los demás, el sexo se reduce a su esencia animal y biológica. – Tim Grierson



Director: Jean Epstein

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Cada película de Jean Epstein tiene su propio sentimiento, separado del otro trabajo del director y de todos los demás. Terrazas Terminadas es documental y de ensueño al mismo tiempo y cuenta la historia de los recolectores de algas en la costa de Bretaña. Epstein filmó en el sitio con personas que no son actores que utilizan cámaras de mano para capturar su estilo de vida. Sin embargo, también dio la impresión de que la forma de vida de sus súbditos pronto desaparecería y se convertiría en un recuerdo lejano. – –Jeremy Mathews



Directores: Jean Cocteau

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La obra maestra de vanguardia de Jean Cocteau sobre la carga de la creatividad artística utiliza efectos en la cámara para crear un fantástico sentido de la lógica de los sueños, como una mano que gana una boca o un espejo que actúa como un portal al subconsciente de un artista y ofrece un Tesoro de imágenes surrealistas y emocionantes para los fanáticos de las obras de David Lynch. Con una vertiginosa mirada a la gracia y al terror, Cocteau expone la amarga honestidad de nuestras creaciones, principalmente porque tienen más control sobre nosotros que nosotros sobre ellos, y que si tenemos suerte, nos sobrevivirán nuevamente. – –Oktay Ege Kozak



Director: Jacques Demy

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¿Por qué caminar por las calles y las plazas de la ciudad cuando puedes cruzarlas? Estar en una película de Jacques Demy significa poder correr libremente como quieras. Seine Arbeit spielt nominell in der realen Welt, aber in Wahrheit ist es Demys reale Welt, ein Spiegel unserer eigenen, in Pastellfarben gewaschenen, verankert in Spuren von Melancholie, die am besten durch Tanzen erforscht werden. Die jungen Mädchen von Rochefortähnlich Die Regenschirme von Cherbourgist ein Film, der in den Film verliebt ist und in dem die Realität von der Unwirklichkeit des Kinos durchdrungen ist. Demy lädt uns zwei Stunden lang ein, Frankreich nicht nur durch seine Linse, sondern auch durch seinen größten Traum zu sehen: Dass wir alle unser Leben in einem Film leben dürfen. Demy Schuss Die jungen Mädchen von Rochefort vor Ort statt eines Studio-Backlots. Das hier ist Rochefort, aber Rochefort erhielt die Demy-Behandlung.

Im Gegensatz zu zeitgenössischen Prätendenten auf Demys Thron (à la La La Land), Die jungen Mädchen von Rochefort muss nicht hart arbeiten, um den illusorischen, grenzüberschreitenden Effekt zu erzielen, den Demy hier mühelos erzielt. Vor der Kamera gefangen, wird nicht jeder plötzlich ein erstklassiger Tänzer; Eingehüllt in die romantischen Verstrickungen der Handlung findet nicht jeder das Happy End, das wir von ihnen erwarten. Vielleicht ist das das Einzige, was Demy an der realen Welt nicht ändern kann. Herzschmerz und Euphorie sind zwei Seiten derselben bittersüßen Medaille. – Andy Crump



Regie: Claire Denis

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Lob SchokoladeRoger Ebert, Claire Denis ‘erster Film und eine halbautobiografische Geschichte über eine weiße französische Familie, die im kolonialen Afrika lebt, schrieb: „Er wurde mit der Komplexität und Subtilität einer großartigen Kurzgeschichte gedreht und setzt ein Publikum voraus, das verstehen kann, was Zwischen zwei Menschen, die sich kaum berühren, kann ein starker Sexfluss bestehen. “ Eine solche Aussage könnte diejenigen überraschen, die den Film gesehen haben, da er Sex weder zeigt noch offen diskutiert, aber er hat Recht: Die unausgesprochenen Worte in Schokolade könnte Bände füllen. Der Film vergleicht diesen Teil der Rassentrennung der Welt mit dem Horizont, einer stetigen Linie, die den Himmel von der Erde trennt. Du gehst darauf zu und es bewegt sich ständig zurück. Von allen Charakteren im Film versteht der afrikanische Diener der Familie, Protée (Isaach De Bankole), die sozialen Regeln, unter denen jeder lebt, am besten, aber der Film vermittelt seine enorm komplexe Sichtweise mit sehr wenig Dialog. Er ist eine fast stille Präsenz in einem Haus voller Geschwätz. Schokolade ist ein Film für Erwachsene im besten Sinne. Eine solche Reife könnte man von jemandem erwarten, der ihren ersten Film im Alter von 40 Jahren drehte und dann als Regieassistentin für legendäre Filmemacher wie Jacques Rivette, Wim Wenders und Jim Jarmusch arbeitete. Denis ist Mitautorin all ihrer Filme, und eine Vielzahl von Ressourcen inspirieren sie – von Melville und Faulkner bis zu ihren eigenen Erfahrungen in Afrika und Frankreich. Sie kombiniert all dies in Filmen, die unglaublich zusammenhängend und wirklich filmisch sind. Wo ein Romanautor beschreiben könnte, was eine Figur denkt, wird Denis in einer flüchtigen Einstellung mit einer nuancierten Perspektive etwas Ähnliches vermitteln. – –Robert Davis



Regie: Jean Vigo

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Jean Vigo, der manchmal als Schutzpatron des französischen Kinos bezeichnet wird, starb im Alter von 29 Jahren an Tuberkulose, nachdem er nur einen Spielfilm und drei Kurzfilme gedreht hatte. Trotz seiner winzigen Leistung inspirierte Vigo viele Regisseure, von Francois Truffaut bis Lindsay Anderson, und sein Meisterwerk war Null für Verhalten. Es erzählt die Geschichte einer Internatsrevolte, beginnend mit einer Erklärung, warum sich die Schüler abgelehnt fühlen, und führt zu einer außergewöhnlichen Reihe von Szenen, in denen sie die Kontrolle übernehmen. All the while, Vigo seems to form a narrative around jokes, resulting in something as freewheeling and whimsical as it is tightly plotted and purposeful. With a penchant for directing children, Vigo never lets Zero for Conduct’s absurdist tendencies get the better of its underlying points. Its spectacular end, in particular, is both stylistically bold and confounding, a suitable conclusion to a film absolutely brimming with life. —Sean Edgar



Directors: Agnès Varda and JR

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The best road movie of 2016 was this delightful film from New Wave pioneer Agnès Varda and photographer JR. The odd-couple contrast between co-directors is physically striking—she’s a woman, he’s a man; he’s much taller and younger than she—but they’re aligned in their desire to document the lives of everyday French citizens, taking oversized photos of the people they meet and plastering them on the sides of buildings to commemorate their specialness. Faces Places is very much in the style of Varda’s documentaries from the past two decades, such as The Gleaners and I y The Beaches of Agnès, which chart how art and life weave inextricably together, but at 89, she doesn’t have the same stamina she once did. That fact lends added poignancy to a movie that, in part, is about the fragility of everything: small towns, photographs, loved ones, long friendships fading into disrepair. With JR as her co-conspirator, the Varda we see in Faces Places stands as a model for how to carry oneself through the world: with humor, humility and grace. —Tim Grierson



Director: Jacques Audiard

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A Prophet is a modern gangster movie about prison drug syndicates in France, using a cold, documentarian’s focus on an underground ringleader without resorting to backhanded glamorization, all the while packing a brass-knuckled punch. Still, the most alluring aspects of A Prophet look beyond crime, just as Godfather scribe Mario Puzo said that his canonized epic was more a reflection on American immigration than a Tommy gun demonstration. The story begins with ascendant thug Malik El Djebena (Tahar Rahim), a bewildered, illiterate 19-year-old tossed into a prison that bears an uncanny resemblance to an American university dorm. Charged with assaulting a police officer, the teenage offender is soon introduced to a prison yard built around racial battle lines. France is certainly no stranger to ethno-religious strife, and this continual undercurrent gives the film much of its subliminal weight. In 2002, Jean-Marie Le Pen ran for president with xenophobic hyperbole and finished second with 18 percent of the vote. Le Pen was later fined in 2005 by a Parisian Court for “inciting racial hatred,” and in 2007 Le Mondek, quoted him saying, “You can’t dispute the inequality of races.” That same year saw riots erupt in the Southern city of Perpignan, spurred by clashes between the Romas and North African Arabs. Half Arab and half Corsican (from the French Mediterranean island populated by Catholics), Malik is left in a precarious position defined by this extreme sociological backdrop. Simultaneously maligned and embraced by his dual heritage, he uses his genealogy and bilingualism to maneuver around Arabs, Corsicans and Italians in the prison until each warring faction is either neutralized or in his debt. Herein lies the film’s ironic morality. Its “hero” manipulates racism as a tool to control the intolerant, uniting the color-blind and downtrodden into a triumphant force—to deal drugs. —Sean Edgar



Director: Luis Buñuel

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In actuality motivated by a falling out with one of the actresses, Luis Buñuel’s decision to cast two women (Carole Bouquet and Angela Molina) in the role of tempestuous young Cochina who inevitably becomes a point of obsession for old and stuffy bourgeois Mathieu (Fernando Rey) delivers a genius bit of thematic poignancy throughout That Obscure Object of Desire, the final film he’d direct before passing in 1983. The actresses who play Conchita switch sometimes even within the same scene, but it matters not to the man, who’s only after an ideal of carefree, feminine youth, not anyone in particular. For his sins, Mathieu gets exactly what he craves, as a wild and contemptuous relationship drives them both to the edge of insanity. Setting his film in Spain and France amidst a terrorist uprising, Buñuel deliberately peppers its background with acts of terrorism, drawing a clear line between two toxic relationships, one political and one sexual—never clarifying which is which. —Oktay Ege Kozak



Director: Catherine Breillat

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Lately—within the context of Hollywood’s #TimesUp movement and the backlash mostly led by French actresses and filmmakers—Catherine Breillat has not endeared herself to audiences and industry progressives as an icon of enlightened feminist discourse. Not that she ever really did anyway. Her films almost exclusively probe female sexual coming-of-age within the context of societal (and therefore male) oppression—chipping away at the male gaze through long shots and anti-erotic, unflinching sex scenes—but rarely does Breillat offer any outcome apart from one of abject misery and the dissolution of a young woman’s agency. Relationships between men and women, in Breillat’s films, are always fraught with disaster. Yet, Fat Girl may be the closest the director has ever approached a sense of hope, even if “hope” for Breillat is just defiance.

Twelve-year-old Anaïs (Anaïs Reboux) and her 15-year-old sister Elena (Roxane Mesquida), on vacation with their parents, meet college student Fernando (Libero de Rienzo), with whom Elena begins a fling mediated, of course, by her naivete and Fernando’s lecherous aims. Elena, too, is a physical foil to her younger sister: Beautiful, she looks much older than 15, while Anaïs represents the subject of the film’s title, stocky and cherubic, the words “fat” and girl” two of Breillat’s provocations meant to interrogate the person, too young and too overweight, we imagine when resorting to such base modifiers and constructed images of beauty. While Anaïs literally watches as Fernando connives his way into taking Elena’s virginity, convincing her he’s in love and treating her to contrived romantic declarations, the younger sister comes to understand her own sexuality by default. She, according to her repeated claims, wants to lose her virginity to someone who doesn’t love her. Inevitably, Elena’s dalliance drives the family toward a shocking and pointlessly tragic conclusion—not without an insanely gripping sequence set around a very mundane car ride—but rather than leave the audience with a sense of nihilism, Breillat steals a shot from Truffaut and freezes on Anais’s face. How audacious, Breillat seems to be saying, for a girl to embrace the destruction of everything she knows. I guess this is growing up. —Dom Sinacola



Director: Jean-Luc Godard

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Here we find Godard at the very end of his New Wave period, just before he falls off the precipice into the Marxist phase of his career, when his movies became more political and, frankly, quite tedious. Here, you can see the director close to the revolution that would end the so-called “narrative” part of his filmmaking ambitions, but he hasn’t yet come totally unhinged—Weekend bears a cohesive story about a married couple who hate each other and are conspiring to commit murder on one another or the wife’s father over an inheritance. There’s both elegance and frustration here, with iconic shots—like an eight-minute continuous scene in traffic—competing with an irrepressible urge to devolve into absurdity. There are car crashes, trips back in time and, yes, murder, but Godard the genius can still be felt behind the camera. This film deserves to be seen on its own merits, and also as a bookend to one of the greatest directorial periods in a great artistic career. —Shane Ryan



Director: Céline Sciamma

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The closeness of girl friendships are oft-remarked on, and they are beautifully articulated in this impressionistic French film. Kajida Toure stars as a teen coming of age in the Parisian banlieue, where feminine but hyper-tough girls rule the roost—and know there’s strength in numbers. They shoplift their bodycon dresses and have street scraps with other girl gangs, but are still slut-shamed and dominated by the local boys. Celine Sciamma lenses her unknown actors with gorgeously diffused blue filters, and captures the way they dance, revel in their physical intimacy, and fiercely defend one another. It’s a truthful and compelling portrait of female solidarity. —Christina Newland



Director: Michael Haneke

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Amour opens jarringly, as the police break down the door to a well-heeled Parisian apartment. They follow a sickening odor to the decomposing body of an elderly woman peacefully lying in bed in her Sunday best. From here, the film flashes back: Georges (Jean-Louis Trintignant) and Anne (Emmanuelle Riva), former musicians and teachers, have settled into a comfortable retirement in their eighties, when Anne suffers a stroke. Eventually, she undergoes an unsuccessful surgery and proceeds to become further debilitated. The couple’s daughter, Eva, played by the still beautiful and engaging Isabelle Huppert, shows up to check in on her parents during a break from her busy musician’s life. But she seems to be more of a burden than a comfort to her parents. Georges tends to Anne dutifully and without resentment as her condition worsens. It is both touching and heartbreaking to watch him care for her as she reverts to an infant-like state, and, after an operation, Anne makes it clear that she does not want to go back to the hospital under any condition. Meanwhile, it becomes increasingly evident that she does not wish to continue to live in her current state. Georges cannot acknowledge her wishes, until finally he can, and does—a revelation that has life-altering consequences. Amour simultaneously illuminates the horrors and beauty of aging. Who would not wish to live until their twilight years like Georges and Anne, comfortably enjoying their last decade of life? On the flip side, who would not be ruined by seeing one’s spouse reduced to incoherent babbling and incontinence? Austrian filmmaker and sometime provocateur Michael Haneke lets it play out gently and without exploitation: Amour leaves the viewer feeling unsettled, but also pondering what it means to truly love and care for someone. —Jonah Flicker



Director: François Truffaut

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François Truffaut’s Shoot the Piano Player feels like the tragicomic reverse of Jean-Pierre Melville’s Le Doulos. Instead of adapting French literature through an American lens, Truffaut turns David Goodis’ crime yarn Down There into an altogether unpredictable, altogether French story about commercialism, artistic purity and the ways our pasts catch up with us. Shoot the Piano Player keeps its tongue firmly in cheek as Truffaut oscillates between absurd slapstick and heartbreak. A man swears to his honesty on his mother’s soul, and the camera cuts away to dear old mom as she falls down dead in her kitchen; Truffaut’s protagonist, Charlie (Charles Aznavour), plays a ditty in the dive bar where he works, haunted by the death of his wife as well as his rising career as a concert pianist. The film is a romp—until it’s a downer. —Andy Crump



Director: Luis Buñuel

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As it is with Un Chien Andalou, drawing any cohesive narrative structure out of Salvador Dali and Luis Buñuel’s L’Age D’Or, their feverish nightmare of a takedown of respected social norms, is futile. From skewering the moral emptiness of the bourgeoisie (Buñuel’s favorite subject), to giddily ridiculing the Catholic church, the point of the film, which the filmmakers largely admitted, is to extract strong, visceral reactions out of the oppressively controversial images that Dali and Buñuel throws at us. Uncut cinematic surrealism like this may be better consumed in shorter bursts—Un Chien Andalou’s 16-minute runtime a perfect specimen—so L’Age D’Or’s one-hour runtime deliberately tests one’s patience at points. Yet, as the final collaboration between two of the most formidable surrealist artists of the early 20th century, its importance and influence is, however broad, indisputable. —Oktay Ege Kozak



Director: Mia Hansen-Løve

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In French director Mia Hansen-Løve’s films, nothing lasts. Life’s irritating fleetingness dominates the proceedings, and Things to Come takes this theme to its logical conclusion, looking at the travails of an older woman (Isabelle Huppert) who watches one element of her life after another get stripped away. The film’s power is its recognition that, no matter how hard life gets, though, it just keeps going. (In fact, that’s what makes existence oddly beautiful.) Huppert is marvelous in the role: Between this performance and the one in the far spikier Elle in the same year, she continues to make one compelling case after another for ranking as one of the best actresses of her generation, blending vulnerability and defiance in inspiring ways. —Tim Grierson



Director: Robert Bresson

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The Crime and Punishment-inspired Pickpocket is of a piece with Bresson’s previous masterpiece, 1956’s A Man Escaped. Both hold a single-minded focus on the richly detailed world of the lead character, in this case an aspiring criminal who thinks he’s extraordinary enough to take money from others without any concern for morality or the law. That titular pickpocket, Michel (intentionally played with no emotion by first time actor Martin LaSalle), elevates his love of theft above any of his personal relationships, turning it into an almost euphoric act despite his stone-faced exterior, and one that ultimately leaves him alone. Driven primarily by LaSalle’s narration, Pickpocket is a hermetically sealed glimpse into one criminal’s life, and a dispassionate treatise on morality and responsibility. —Garrett Martin



Director: Arnaud Desplechin

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A Christmas Tale is a lively, capricious, mischievous ensemble delight—the kind of movie Noah Baumbach would make if he were French and a little more hopeful about humanity. Abel (Jean-Paul Roussillon) and Junon (Catherine Deneuve) have three grown children, two of whom have long been estranged. Now, as Junon needs a dangerous transfusion to survive cancer, everyone convenes in the family home to celebrate Christmas together. Though the film deals with many exceptionally depressing topics (mental illness, hatred, life-threatening disease, lost love, betrayal) director Arnaud Desplechin never veers into maudlin territory. Instead, with a lightly stylized touch, A Christmas Tale avoids taking itself or its characters’ foibles too seriously. Family members might hate each other, but something like love is underneath it all. On top of his story about a hilariously contentious family reunion, Desplechin has heaped cinema itself, spinning up a maelstrom of irises and dissolves, Vertigos and Tenenbaums, Minguses and Herrmanns, to end up with something that feels almost, maybe, strangely, ever so slightly touching. —Alissa Wilkinson



Directors: Alexander Korda; Marc Allégret; Marcel Pagnol

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Marcel Pagnol’s trilogy can seem a bit tame in comparison with all the influential iconoclasts and film auteurs on this list, but starting with Marius, an adaptation of Pagnol’s stage play, the Marseille Trilogy should be viewed as a trailblazing trio of films in their own rights—films that would provide some of the very standards against which later directors would so gleefully rebel. Immensely evocative in settings both physical (Marseille harbor) and emotional (the relationships between the main characters, requited and not), Marius, Fanny y César take the viewer on a journey that, while a bit melodramatic at times (and of the times, cinematically), both soothes and delights in its capturing of quirks, fancies and flaws that are all too human. —Michael Burgin



Director: Marcel Carné

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This is the movie Francois Truffaut said he’d revoke his entire oeuvre to have directed. The very fact of its existence seems to contribute to its rather magical quality. (it was filmed in 1945 during the Nazi occupation of France, which of course created significant obstacles for director Marcel Carné.) A historical piece set in the 1820s Paris theater world, it centers on an enigmatic performer named Garence (Arletty) and four men who are drawn to her, each for slightly different reasons. Only one, a mime named Deburau (Jean-Louis Barrault), has pure intentions: Naturally, he’s the one who gets hurt. Les Enfants du Paradis is a tale of grand passion between men and women, between actors and audiences and between actors and the stages they inhabit—epic, lavish, tragic, enchanting, a film with enormous style. —Amy Glynn



Director: Dimitri Kirsanoff

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Watching Menilmontant is a deeply felt experience. In only his second film, impressionist filmmaker Dimitri Kirsanoff takes the dreamlike qualities of silent cinema to their natural conclusion, letting the story float by alongside haunting imagery without any intertitles directing how one should interpret this bold work. It starts abruptly, brutally with a man murdering a couple, then follows a love triangle involving the dead parents’ two daughters once they’ve grown. Yet, for all his cinematic innovations, Kirsanoff is not too hoity-toity to tug the heartstrings; a scene with a kind old man on a park bench is one of the most touching scenes with a kind old man on a park bench you’ll ever see. —Jeremy Mathews



Director: Jean Renoir

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Set in a filthy flophouse, Maxim Gorky’s harrowing 1902 drama, The Lower Depths follows the interactions of a group of forgotten and utterly desperate Russians who have sunken into the dark night of the soul. While Akira Kurosawa’s 1957 version is a fairly faithful adaptation reset in Japan’s Edo period, Jean Renoir took a very different approach when crafting the screenplay for his 1936 adaptation. Renoir’s tweaks to Gorky’s work belie a downright socialist agenda, subtly poking fun at bourgeois society. His thief (played with debonair charm by Jean Gabin) has the air of a Robin Hood about him, as he befriends a down-on-his-luck aristocrat (the great Louis Jouet), who later serves as a wry observer to the self-delusion practiced by denizens of the almost cozy-looking flophouse. Renoir also adds a fat, lecherous bureaucrat in the person of a building inspector and has his landlord frequently point out that he’s “the boss,” a title that is most interesting considering his fate. Where Kurosawa undercuts a moment of happiness with shocking cynicism, Renoir tempers his darkest moment with romantic optimism. It speaks volumes about the two artists and makes for fascinating viewing. —Tim Sheridan



Director: Luis Buñuel

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Buñuel’s most commercially successful film (it even bested Belle de Jour), The Discreet Charm of the Bourgeoisie took the 1973 Oscar for Best Foreign Film and top honors from the National Society of Film Critics. Like many of his films, this surrealist comedy revels in Buñuel’s preoccupations with ideas of social status, ego and human veneer, structured as a thematically linked succession of thwarted dinner parties and four characters’ dreams, wherein violence and banality coexist seemingly unaware of one another, facades and fears engage in complex interplay, and Buñuel deploys his obsession with bondage in some magnificently weird ways. The grotesque and the flat-out ridiculous collide again and again throughout the virtually plotless The Discreet Charm of the Bourgeoisie, which uses the cynical juxtaposition of opulent and horrific images to give us a classic surrealist commentary on social charades. —Amy Glynn



Director: Jean-Luc Godard

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By the standards of his New Wave years, this was a “lesser” Godard film—more absurd, more confusing and perhaps a sign of the disjointed Marxist period to come. As Roger Ebert wrote back in 1966, ”…the parts don’t fit together—but they add up to an attitude.” Precisely: This is a film to watch after you’ve become familiar with Godard, after you’ve given yourself over to his rhythms and eccentricities, and after, perhaps, your fourth or fifth Godardian epiphany. (Don’t go straight from Breathless to Pierrot, in other words.) But once you cross that threshold, you’ll find ample reward in this road movie starring Jean-Paul Belmondo and Anna Karina, loosely tied together by a gangster-heavy plot (Pierrot is saturated with violence) and the theme of lost love. To experience it purely as metaphor, too, is to find a way in to Godard’s earlier, more accessible films. —Shane Ryan



Director: Julia Ducournou

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If you’re the proud owner of a twisted sense of humor, you might sell your friends on Julia Ducournau’s Raw as a coming-of-age movie in a bid to trick them into seeing it. Yes, the film’s protagonist, naive new college student Justine (Garance Marillier), comes of age over the course of its running time: She parties, she breaks out of her shell and she learns about who she really is on the verge of adulthood. But most kids who discover themselves in the movies don’t realize that they’ve spent their lives unwittingly suppressing an innate, nigh-insatiable need to consume raw meat. Allow Ducournau her cheekiness: More than a wink and nod to the picture’s visceral particulars, her film’s title is an open concession to the harrowing quality of Justine’s grim blossoming. Nasty as the film gets, and it does indeed get nasty, the harshest sensations Ducournau articulates here tend to be the ones we can’t detect by merely looking. Fear of feminine sexuality, family legacies, popularity politics and the uncertainty of self govern Raw’s horrors as much as exposed and bloody flesh. It’s a gorefest that offers no apologies and plenty more to chew on than its effects. —Andy Crump



Director: Hou Hsiao-Hsien

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It’s tempting to put this French-language film by Hou Hsiao-hsien into a neat little box. Although it’s not aimed at kids, it’s an homage to Albert Lamorisse’s endearing children’s short “The Red Balloon,” and at times it seems as buoyant and aimless as a helium-filled toy. Hou worked in France instead of his usual Taiwan, and with Academy Award-winning actress Juliette Binoche instead of his cast of regulars, which makes the entire project feel like a detour for an artist best known for complex, austere films about Taiwan’s pulsing present and tumultuous history. Even when he’s working with simple ingredients, he brings along his masterful sense of space, timing and everyday observation, which gives an actress like Binoche ample room to shine. In Flight of the Red Balloon, she’s a busy single mother, vibrant and wonderful, glowing from beginning to end. Of course, she glows within Hou’s framework, his layers of light. He carves her tiny Parisian apartment into sections: the sliver of a kitchen, the front door that leads to chaos, the corner for video games and the table that sits front-and-center, anchoring the patient, slowly panning camera. Lamorisse’s short is about a loner of a boy who has the best of all possible friends, an amazingly reactive balloon, but Hou’s film is a realistic look at the inside of this fantasy, at the modern-day stresses on close-knit families. He slips behind Lamorisse’s facade like the Taiwanese amateur filmmaker who takes a job as Binoche’s nanny, an echo of Hou within his own story; the nanny even tells us how special effects make the balloon move. Since Flight falls at the simple-but-elegant end of Hou’s spectrum, the mysterious and lyrical finale in the Musée D’Orsay comes as a surprise; this balloon is anchored by some heft. —Robert Davis



Director: Henri-Georges Clouzot

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As is the case with many films of the 1940s, especially those foreign selections made or released in the shadow of World War II occupation—by whomever (see also: Kurosawa’s navigation of American censors during the U.S.’s squatting in Japan)—Le Corbeau is a morally thorny tale, infatuated more with the darkness within all of us than in exploring any sense of hope that the world’s not a shitty place. Director Henri-Georges Clouzot treats as a given that the world is a shitty place, through and through, detailing how the denizens of a small French town (“anywhere”) are pitted against one another through a series of poison pen letters sent by the titular Raven. Everyone, it seems, has something devastating to hide, not the least of whom is Dr. Germain (Pierre Fresnay), a man known for his lusty dalliances, which feels ironic given that he also conducts illegal abortions in the area. As the letters pile up and one cancer patient (Roger Blin) commits suicide (due to a letter from the Raven informing him that his cancer is terminal), the town grows increasingly desperate to find the culprit, sparking a witch hunt that catches Dr. Germain in the midst of his many lies. While his plot is the stuff of soap opera pulp, Clouzot masterfully mounts paranoia on top of tension on top of existential guilt, winding his players so tightly that when the film inevitably erupts into violence, the viewer is left with nothing but a bleak sense that nobody got what they deserved—and that maybe no one ever really gets what we deserve anyway. —Dom Sinacola



Director: Francois Truffaut

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Perhaps Francois Truffaut should have released The Last Metro using a pseudonym—maybe then it would be regarded as a minor masterpiece. As it is, one can’t help compare this brilliant but largely conventional film to his earlier, more radical work, like The 400 Blows y Jules and Jim. More’s the pity, for as an unabashed ode to the power of art and the spirit of resistance, The Last Metro has few equals. It helps to have two of the French screen’s greatest legends, Catherine Deneuve and Gerard Depardieu, front and center, but the story of a theater in Nazi-occupied Paris run in secret by a Jewish director living/hiding in the basement has the power to thrill and inspire, if only you can forget who directed it. —Michael Dunaway



Director: Patrice Leconte

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Basing his film on a novel by Belgian writer George Simenon, director Patrice Leconte blends cold, cool visuals, superb performances and a haunting score by composer Michael Nyman (The Piano, Gattaca, pretty much every Peter Greenaway film) in this too-often-overlooked French thriller/love story. Whether you get caught up in the whodunnit, the off-kilter romance or just the fascinating portrait of the title character, Monsieur Hire will leave a lasting impression. —Michael Burgin



Director: Marcel Ophüls

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With tragedy still stinging, and wounds still fresh across Europe, Marcel Ophüls crafted something of a four-hour harangue about the Vichy government’s collaboration with Nazi Germany during the bulk of World War II. Assembled from interviews with officers, sympathizers, resistance fighters and bystanders—perspectives originating from every angle—The Sorrow and the Pity reveals many excruciating truths about France during the occupation, but none more plangent than the idea that war has no sides, no good guys, no winners. There’s only the sorrow, and then the pity—and everything else is just a series of long, heartsick discussions about right and wrong and how there’s very little difference when both are so up for debate. —Dom Sinacola



Directors: Jean-Pierre Dardenne, Luc Dardenne

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The Kid with a Bike continues the Belgian writing-directing brothers Jean-Pierre and Luc Dardennes’ extraordinary run of films charting the lives of European down-and-outers navigating difficult moral and spiritual terrain. That time and again they’ve managed to do so incisively, yet with an emotionally detached tone, speaks to their ability to elicit complex audience reactions with a sure, minimalist style. The Kid with a Bike is no exception. The film follows 11-year-old Cyril (Thomas Doret) as he struggles to reconcile with the fact that his father, Guy (Jérémie Renier), has abandoned him. In shock and denial, with the aid of Samantha (Cécile de France), a neighborhood hairdresser, Cyril tracks down his bicycle, which Guy had secretly sold for much-needed cash before his departure. The two also locate Guy himself, leading to a wrenching reunion that ends with the father literally shutting the door in his son’s face. Full of confusion and self-loathing after his father’s rejection, Cyril’s inevitable mix-up with a local hood, Wes (Egon Di Mateo), initiates a downward spiral into crime and retaliation that threatens any prospect for better days ahead for the wounded Cyril and the devoted Samantha. As with all of the Dardennes’ films, events proceed naturally as a chain of causes and effects. Theirs is a cinema of keenly observed sociology, always interested in one’s capacity to prevail despite terrible socioeconomic odds and psychological trauma. As portrait of a young boy’s resilience and of compassion shown by one human being towards another, The Kid with a Bike is part of a grand tradition of humanist realism. —Jay Antani



Director: Jean Renoir

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Made in the build-up to an even greater war, Jean Renoir’s WWI POW drama is a sincere call for unity between nations. The call would go unheeded of course, but 80 years filled with clashes and violent disagreements later, Renoir’s message prevails: Class, nationality and creed are meaningless before our shared humanity. Just a decade on from the first talkie, Renoir made what today appears a strikingly modern film, replete with naturalistic performances and dialogue, smooth camera movements and, most importantly, complex character dynamics. Every character in the film, through desperate circumstance, becomes allied with another from a walk of life they otherwise would never traverse. Most interesting is the relationship between the aristocratic de Boeldieu (Pierre Fresnay) and von Rauffenstein (Erich von Stroheim): They are French and German, prisoner and warden, but, as if two rare creatures forced to occupy the same cage, a friendship forms through mutual recognition that they may be among the last of their kind. Renoir’s depiction of an entire society through allegory is genius, his empathy almost superhuman. The Grand Illusion kills with kindness—it fulfills its duty as an anti-war flick not by showing battlefield horrors, but simply by asking: How can we be enemies when we have so much in common? —Brogan Morris



Director: Krzysztof Kieslowski

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Red would turn out to be Krzysztof Kieslowski’s final film—whether the Polish director knew he was near death’s door while he was filming the final portion of his Three Colors trilogy will most likely never come to light. In any case, it’s hard to picture a better film with which to bow out. For his Three Colors, the idea was to make three films, each based around one of the political ideals represented in the French flag—blue (liberty), white (equality) and red (fraternity)—Kieslowski often structuring the films around undermining the very notions the colors represent, characters from adjacent films making a random, happenstance occurrence in each other’s stories. Typically dubbed the “anti-romance” segment of the trilogy, and for good reason, Red centers around the relationship between a naïve young model (Irène Jacob) and a reclusive middle-aged man (Jean-Louis Trintignant) who spends his day listening in to his neighbor’s telephone conversations. Simultaneously, we follow the story of a young law student (Jean-Pierre Lorit) who comes to believe his girlfriend is cheating on him. Hardly the passionate romantic romp the film’s title implies—that’s not to say the film is hard to watch. On the contrary, it’s mesmerizing. Like Kie?lowski’s best work—The Double Life of Veronique or The Decalogue—the beauty of the story comes not necessarily in what happens but how Kie?lowski deftly structures the execution. While watching the previous entries in the trilogy, Blue y White, are not necessary to understanding Red, taken as a whole, the final minutes of the director’s canon packs a powerful kicker. —Amy Glynn



Director: Paul Verhoeven

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Considering its touchy subject matter—a woman’s unconventional, to say the least, response to her rape—it’s a bit surprising that Paul Verhoeven’s latest provocation hasn’t really caused the same kind of firestorm of controversy that, say, Showgirls did. This could be explained by Verhoeven’s art-house-friendly aesthetic this time around—but it most likely has more to do with just how much imagination and empathy Isabelle Huppert puts into connecting the dots of her character’s difficult-to-pin-down psyche. As always, Huppert has no interest in begging you to like her, which seems appropriate for a character like Michèle Leblanc, hellbent on refusing to be seen as a victim after her brutal rape by a masked stranger in its opening scene. But Huppert, working from David Birke’s screenplay (adapted from a novel by Philippe Djinn), digs deeper and comes up with some even more astonishing psychological links. Her occasionally manipulative way with people, her alternating attraction/repulsion toward violence and domination—all can be glimpsed in Huppert’s brilliantly dense and utterly fearless characterization, offering yet another remarkable example of why she’s celebrated as one of the finest actresses in the world. —Kenji Fujishima



Director: Mathieu Kassovitz

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Writer/director Mathieu Kassovitz’s urgent, hypnotically raw drama, about a day in the lives of three downtrodden young men from immigrant backgrounds (Vincent Cassel, Hubert Koundé and Saïd Taghmaoui) surviving their low income French suburb, begins with a famous joke: “A man falls from a tall building. With every passing floor, he says, ‘So far, so good.’” Whether or not the final shot of La Haine is tragic or inevitable is left to the viewer, but Kassovitz stays nevertheless determined to convey all the details of the harsh reality these kids face every day. The film’s brilliant mix of modern sensibilities with old-school techniques—like its use of split diopter shots to show, at once, both brutality and the intimate reactions to the same—creates in La Haine a sense of the timeless, of an expression of youthful anger and aimless dissent that knows no particular era. —Oktay Ege Kozak



Director: Jules Dassin

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Blacklisted and in exile, director Jules Dassin (American, despite the Gallic disguise his name could take on) made Rififi in Paris after more than a decade struggling under the House Un-American Activities Committee’s stranglehold over Hollywood. Reared in noir and similar wise-guy-inhabiting genres, Dassin seemed finally free with Rififi, a tightly wound testament to the weird and alluring dreamscape of criminal enterprise. In it, Jean Servais is a coughing, sagging pile of skin grafted to the frame of a formerly revered gangster, Tony “le Stéphanois,” a man who recently out of jail wants to play it safe until his pride gets the best of him. Assembling a team of European outlaws (including Dassin using the pseudonym “Perlo Vita” to portray Italian safecracker César), Tony masterminds the jewel heist to end all jewel heists, and, in turn, Dassin practically defined his own genre. The “heist film” is now a matter of cultural intuition—everything from Ocean’s 11 to Inception owes its intricacy and style to Dassin’s swagger—but in 1955, there was simply no other film like Rififi. Yet, even today, Dassin’s film is an astounding machine of filmmaking precision: In structure, dialogue, acting, cinematography and overall design, the film feels as if it’s working off of ineffable instincts, hiding nothing but implying everything. And working is perhaps the best way to describe what the film does best: Look only to the now-iconic, 33-minute heist sequence which serves as the film’s second act, totally without dialogue and careful to show, in bouts of unbelievable tension, just how much effort is required of putting together a seamless criminal act. It’s bravura filmmaking without one sweat-infused drop of ostentation, and rather than rest on melodrama to prove a point, Dassin sucks all romance out of the gangster equation, leaving the audience with nothing but the thankless toil of skirting the law. —Dom Sinacola



Director: Leos Carax

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Who knew it would be Kylie Minogue to remind us exactly why we go to the movies at all? Delicately singing (“Who are we?”), Minogue walks around in what looks like an abandoned garage, mannequin bodies strewn on the floor, late into Leos Carax’s Holy Motors, his bizarre French morsel about cinema, and acting, and the worlds to which we are transported, and the realities from which we cannot necessarily escape. Denis Lavant plays an actor (or does he?), shapeshifting from one part to the next with rigor, ambling from scene to scene—one of which features Minogue as someone who may have been a lover of his—as the film takes on an anthological shape. Carax and Denis stuff nearly every genre into their entrancing film while keeping it cohesive cohesive, all the while gamely tearing down the walls between film and audience, suggesting that who we are is only a matter of what we see. —Kyle Turner



Director: Max Ophüls

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La Ronde, Max Ophüls’ first film back in France after a postwar stint in Hollywood—where he directed Joan Fontaine in the classic Letter from an Unknown Woman (1948)—inaugurated the most fruitful (and, sadly, final) stage of his career. Adapted from Arthur Schnitzler’s 1897 play of the same name, La Ronde links together ten romantic vignettes set in turn-of-the-century Vienna, featuring characters from all walks of life (a prostitute played by Simone Signoret, for instance, or a society wife played by Danielle Darrieux). Though he’d elaborate on the complex structure to finer effect in Le Plaisir (1952), The Earrings of Madame De… (1953) and his last completed film, Lola Montès (1955), La Ronde presages Ophüls’ almost Balzacian interest in peeling the onion of the European social order, coupled with the formal grace notes—a man’s cockeyed glance at a woman’s back, a couple separated in the frame by a pendulum clock, a segment divided by the courses of a menu de dégustation—that made him a favorite of the French New Wave. Indeed, Anton Walbrook’s “Master of Ceremonies” might even call to mind la politique des auteurs, albeit avant la lettre. Pacing before a proscenium arch in the opening sequence, he is part author, part accomplice, part passerby, but most of all he is part audience, or perhaps critic: “I’m the personification,” he says, “of your desire to know everything.” —Matt Brennan



Director: Jean-Luc Godard

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Band of Outsiders features the ephemeral Anna Karina as one of a trio of novice outlaws (a common theme with Godard) which makes plans to rob a villa outside Paris, resulting in a sepia-toned, melancholic drama punctuated by bouts of comedy. As in the seminal Breathless, Godard shows remarkable deftness in juggling the casually absurd aspects of his film with dead-serious social commentary, capturing it all in the framework of an compelling story with severe stakes for its protagonists. (Aside: Has any director been better at showing the humanity of criminals?) This is an almost impossible balance to strike, as Godard himself proved in his Marxist period to follow, but here it all meshes effortlessly in what stands as an unlikely stalwart of the French New Wave. —Shane Ryan



Director: Jean Cocteau

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Before there were Jerry Orbach and Angela Lansbury voicing animated animate household items, there was Jean Cocteau. This story’s been with us since the 18th century and rendered in countless iterations, so I’ll forego the plot summary and just say: From the fourth-wall-breaking preamble, in which the director entreats the audience to approach the film with inner-child-forward faith in the magic of fairy tales, to the end, Beauty and the Beast remains a treasure of subtle imagery, mesmerizing music, baroque opulence, sexual intensity and total indulgence in fantasy, aided by Jean Marais (Beast) and Josette Day (Belle) delivering enchanting performances. The themes explored here are traditional fairy tale tropes: innocence and greed, the transformative power of love, the fear of the unknown, magic. Cocteau was a celebrated poet as well as a filmmaker, and this is a strong example of how the two crafts inform one another, in the way it harnesses imagery to create metaphorical connections. Weird and powerful filmmaking. —Amy Glynn



Director: Jean-Luc Godard

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Godard is arguably the most prolific, impactful French director of all time, and Breathless is his first New Wave film: To some, it spawned a revolution, and even if you object to that narrative, its influence on his home country and the New Hollywood period in 1970s America is undeniable. Breathless stars Jean-Paul Belmondo as an incompetent criminal in love with an American student named Patricia (Jean Seberg) in Paris. When he murders a cop, the film turns from a light Parisian affair to a tense love story, and the question that hangs in the balance is whether Patricia will betray her criminal beau. —Shane Ryan



Director: Jacques Tati

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Like the director’s masterwork, Playtime, Monsieur Hulot’s Holiday orbits around Jacques Tati, dropping him feet first into situations and settings he can only react to with profound befuddlement. Also like Playtime, Monsieur Hulot’s Holiday speaks not in French or in English, but in the universal language of comedy—you don’t need to know how to pronounce words in French, or where to put your accent marks when writing in the language of love, to find slapstick funny. Where Playtime contains underpinnings of mourning for a bygone Paris, though, Monsieur Hulot’s Holiday is much more introspective in focus, an inward-facing movie about human nature, about ourselves, about how damn hard it is for people to go on vacation and actually enjoy themselves. Tati made Monsieur Hulot’s Holiday in 1954. In 2018, we’re joined at the wrist to gadgetry that rewards us for staying linked into a greater digital consciousness. The man may have been one of the great comic talents of his day, but years after his death we can pretty safely say he was something of a seer as well. —Andy Crump



Director: Claire Denis

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Where most iconic actors have faces akin to national parks and vast landscapes, French actor Denis Lavant’s is a booming metro, its spaces and cracks like the carefully sculpted facade of a city block. He’s gargoyle-like, and so when he plays the lead in Claire Denis’ Beau Travail, he wears all his implicit machismo right there on his mug. As Chief Adjutant Galoup remembering his time in Djibouti, he snarls, lips twisting into a spiral staircase leading into his fractured psyche. His obsession with Gilles Sentain (Grégoire Colin) manifests as competition, and underneath the heat of the beating sun, Galoup lets this fixation eat away at him until there is almost nothing left. The film moves back and forth between Galoup’s time in the army and his present, writing of his experiences, trying to grasp at what made him so hungry for Sentain, but the scars of queer repression are only one note that informs the hypnotic lyricism of Denis’ film. With blasting critiques of colonialism and masculinity, Denis plunges us into the rhythm of the night, however lonely it ultimately is. —Kyle Turner



Directors: Rémy Belvaux, André Bonzel, Benoît Poelvoorde

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An undeniable forebear to Behind the Mask: The Rise of Leslie Vernon, Man Bites Dog won the International Critics’ Prize at the 1992 Cannes Film Festival, only to receive an NC-17 rating upon its U.S. release and be banned in Sweden altogether. One can understand the squeamishness: Man Bites Dog unflinchingly portrays serial murder in its graphic banality, victims ranging from children to the elderly to a gang-raped woman whose corpse is later photographed with her entrails spilling all over the table on which she was violated, the perpetrators lying in drunken post-revelry, heaped on the floor. Filmed as a mockumentary, Man Bites Dog goes to distressing lengths to detail the exigencies of murder as basely as possible, incorporating the reluctance of the crew filming such horrors to offer the audience a reflection of the ways one feels watching. The fascinated sorrow expressed by the documentary film’s director (Rémy Belvaux) as he realizes what making a documentary film about a serial killer actually means, becoming more and more complicit with the killings as the film goes on, explicitly points to our willingness as bystanders to stomach the horrors displayed. Still, we react viscerally while the film explores conceptual themes of true crime as pop culture commodity and reality TV as detrimental mitigation of truth, ultimately indicting viewers apt to enjoy this movie while simultaneously catering to them. Benoit (Benoît Poelvoorde), the subject of the faux film, is of course an incredibly intelligent societal outcast beset by xenophobia and misogyny, offering up countless neuroses to explore behind his psychopathy and serial murder, which he treats as a legitimate job. But Man Bites Dog is more about the ways in which we consume a movie like Man Bites Dog, concerned less about the flagrant killing it indulges for laughs than it is the laughs themselves, implying that the real blame for such well-known horror falls at our feet, in which each day we take big, basic steps to normalize the violence and hate that constantly surrounds us. —Dom Sinacola



Director: Krzysztof Kieslowski

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Krzysztof Kieslowski’s 1991 film actually merits the type of praise that’s too often lavished by unimaginative critics or overreaching marketing departments on any movie that has dreamy music and a touch of fable. “Magical,” “luminous,” “haunting”—The Double Life of Veronique reminds the viewer what it takes to deserve such praise. Irène Jacob plays two women identical save for some location-based (one in France, one in Poland) variations of name and circumstances. Despite being strangers (albeit identical ones), both share a bond that the Polish director refuses both to explain or mitigate. In a century where so many great works (and artists) have been fixated upon the chasms that divide us, Kieslowski instead insists there’s more connecting us than we can possibly know. —Michael Burgin



Director: Claire Denis

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Messing with genre is more a means to an end for Claire Denis than it is a celebration of the Fulci phantasmagoria and giallo sensibility and European art house erotic thrillers she so clearly loves, and Trouble Every Day is her ultimately harvesting the miasma emanating from the ways in which she bends these kinds of movies to her will. The film stinks of sex and death, rolls around in it, characters licking it dripping from the corners of the screen. It follows newlyweds Dr. Shane Brown (Vincent Gallo, both hypnotized and hypnotic, as if a therapist permanently put him under) and June (Tricia Vessey) on their honeymoon in Paris, which gives Shane the perfect excuse to look up old friends Léo Sémeneau (Alex Descas) and his wife, Coré (Béatrice Dalle), with whom he appears to harbor an obsession secreted from his new spouse. With no fanfare, Denis draws us deeper into the nature of Shane’s obsession, gradually revealing that the predatory hunger Coré has for young men is so strong she begs her husband, who locks her in their house daily, to kill her, lest she kill again. Shane seems to share Coré’s affliction, contracted while working together in South America, ruining his marriage before it’s even begun, generally avoiding June throughout their time in Paris—that is until, in a hyper-violent revelation, he figures out exactly what he must do to preserve his matrimonial vows. A cannibalistic nightmare of an exploitation film; an absurdist fairy tale; the bleakest rom-com you’ve ever seen—whatever angle one wants to pursure with Trouble Every Day, the path toward any semblance of meaning splits, refracts and multiplies, a precise understanding of what Denis intends obscured by mounds of flesh and torn viscera, by the ever-present knowledge that Denis is going to show you something you probably don’t want to see. Which must be the point: Human sexuality is an inscrutable thing, and monogamy strains against that inscrutability. Perhaps, Denis shrugs, we were never meant for one person; perhaps we were only meant to tear each other apart. —Dom Sinacola



Director: Lucile Hadžihalilovic

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Lucile Hadžihalilovic’s gorgeous enigma is anything and everything: creature feature, allegory, sci-fi headfuck, Lynchian homage, feminist masterpiece, 80 minutes of unmitigated gut-sensation—it is an experience unto itself, refusing to explain whatever it is it’s doing so long as the viewer understands whatever that may be on some sort of subcutaneous level. In it, prepubescent boy Nicolas (Max Brebant) finds a corpse underwater, a starfish seemingly blooming from its bellybutton. Which would be strange were the boy not living on a fatherless island of eyebrow-less mothers who every night put their young sons to bed with a squid-ink-like mixture they call “medicine.” This is the norm, until Nicolas’s boy-like curiosity begins to reveal a world of maturity he’s incapable of grasping, discovering one night what the mothers do once their so-called “sons” have fallen asleep. From there, Evolution eviscerates notions of motherhood, masculinity and the inexplicable gray area between, simultaneously evoking anxiety and awe as it presents one unshakeable, dreadful image after another. —Dom Sinacola



Director: Ousmane Sembène

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Senegalese director Ousmane Sembène grew up a French citizen in the final throes of his country’s centuries-long period of colonialism, almost 40 when Senegal joined French Sudan to gain independence. Made six years after France transferred power, Black Girl, Sembène’s first feature-length film as writer and director (based off of his own short story), aches with wounds still lifetimes away from healing, with the shallowness of a people (French) who just want to move on and with the humiliation and resentment of a lot more people (Africans) who physically live everyday, in their language and social structures and economic lots, surrounded by the reminders that they, for so long, were not their own. Sembène makes this divide dreadfully clear, telling the story of quiet Diouana (Mbissine Thérèse Diop), hired by a French family to serve as their nanny in Dakar, until they move back to the Riviera and encourage (expect) Diouana to go and live with them. Of course, once she arrives, the bitter, malicious Madame (Anne-Marie Jelinek) expects her to cook and clean, callously stretching the bounds of Diouana’s duties as nanny into a kind of indentured servitude, exacerbated by Diouana’s inability to read and lack of money. She is, literally, stuck in France. Meanwhile, Sembène cuts to memories of Diouana’s life before she left Senegal, in which she lived in relative poverty but had family and boyfriend (Momar Nar Sene) to support her, telling her not to leave but still needing the money she could potentially earn. Juxtaposing these two realities, Sembène slowly crafts a vision of post-colonial slavery in a post-war world, building a tension that gives Diouana no choice but to tragically get out the only way she knows how. Despite whatever the Madame and her family had in mind, Diouana’s story could have ended no other way. —Dom Sinacola



Director: Luis Buñuel

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In one of Luis Buñuel’s most acclaimed and popular films, Séverine Serizy (Catherine Deneuve) has a loving but sexless marriage, and so becomes a high-end call-girl while her husband is at work. Instead of a “Belle de Nuit” or “Lady of the Night,” Séverine takes the alias “Belle de Jour” (which is also the French name for the daylily, a flower that only opens during daylight), and for a while she seems to come to life in a whole new way (even finally being able to have sex with her husband), until things inevitably get … complicated. Always a filmmaker preoccupied with the intersections of the opulent and the grotesque, the elegant and the surreally nasty, Buñuel found a pretty perfect muse in the icily beautiful Deneuve, whose turn as a bored and un-turn-on-able housewife with BDSM fantasies is stunning in its contrasts of calculation and sentiment, seducer and seduced, humanity and commodity. At times it’s unclear what’s happening in Séverine’s mind and what’s happening in real life—Belle de Jour is a brilliant piece of erotica, a richly detailed treatise on the power of fantasy, a radically ambiguous and artistically masterful film that hasn’t lost an ounce of allure or relevance since it was released. —Amy Glynn



Director: Jean-Luc Godard

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“I … is someone else,” confesses Nana (Anna Karina) during a police inquiry, echoing the century-old sentiment of French poet Arthur Rimbaud. In the next scene, she transforms from a meek record-store clerk with suffocating debt and a child that she (and the audience) never sees, to a prostitute with a new set of problems. The 1961 film is classic Godard in its exploration of the economics of pleasure, a topic he’d investigate again in 1967’s more agitprop 2 or 3 Things I Know About Her. After A Woman is a Woman, his previous kaleidoscopic musical with Karina, this is a more downbeat flick: moody, sparse, noir-ish. The camera feels withdrawn, relying on back-of-the-head shots and mirrored surfaces to capture Nana’s conflicted state. With his insouciant and jarring pop-and-pinball films still to come, this resonant picture remains a singular entry in Godard’s oeuvre. —Andy Beta



Director: René Laloux

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It doesn’t matter if you’re watching René Laloux’s excellent, eccentric Fantastic Planet for the first time or the fortieth, under the influence or stone sober: The film is such a one-of-a-kind oddity in cinema that each viewing feels like its own wholly unique experience. Put simply, there’s nothing quite like it. If you’ve yet to see this masterwork of 1970s psychedelia-meets-social-commentary, you’re missing out. If you have seen it, chances are you haven’t seen anything quite like it since, because there isn’t much in animated cinema to match it. The closest you’ll get is Terry Gilliam’s paper strip animation stylings in Monty Python’s Flying Circus, or maybe the still painting approach of Eiji Yamamoto’s Belladonna of Sadness. Neither of these equate with Fantastic Planet’s visual scheme, though, which just underscores its individuality. Where does a movie like Fantastic Planet come from? How does it even get made? Laloux has offered few answers over the years, though the documentary Laloux Sauvage holds some insight into how his mind works. Maybe the answers aren’t worth pursuing in the first place, and maybe the best way to understand Fantastic Planet is just to watch it, and then watch it again. —Andy Crump



Director: Krzysztof Kie?lowski

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The second of Krzysztof Kielsowski’s “Trois Couleurs” trilogy centers on the theme of equality, represented by the middle white stripe of France’s flag. Polish-born Karol (Zbigniew Zamachowski) has his life in France turned upside down when his wife (Julie Delpy) divorces him for impotence. No job, no passport, he ends up smuggling himself back into newly capitalist Poland in a trunk (from which he emerges bloodied and lost in the snow, declaring happily, “Home at last!”). Once there, he begins amassing wealth and plotting to get Dominique back, from which a murder scheme unexpectedly develops. And, as is the case in most of the director’s films, an element of the completely random provides dramatic tension that operates independently of the plot. The most comedic (or anti-comedic) film of the trilogy, Weiß is notable for its fleet-footed pacing, deadpan direction and strong sense of irony, with Zamachowski and Delpy both fully invested in Kieslowski’s tone. —Amy Glynn



Director: Jacques Rivette

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In this sprawling narrative, two different Parisian theater groups rehearse plays by Aeschylus (Seven Against Thebes y Prometheus Bound), while one young deaf-mute man panhandles, a bewitching young women swindles and some kind of conspiratorial group modeled on the “Thirteen” of Balzac’s novels. Most of the film’s first installment consists of the Prometheus group engaging in a big, loud, moaning-and-mud-slinging acting exercise that begins with pairs mirroring one another’s actions and ends (a lot later) in a pantomime of a pagan ritual. There’s other stuff going on, too, but this sets the tone: We’re not here to engage with an epic plot so much as settle down into the slow rhythm of real time, to live with characters over a long period. Most of the characters are actors, conscious always of being watched (and trying not to be), and those characters are played by real actors who know they’re in a film. So we’re several layers deep, as audience members. The film wants us to remember that real life is just as much of an improvisation—in fact, more so—as anything that happens in the theater. People repeat lines and interact with one another in ways we realize are drawn from previous interactions. In real life, Rivette seems to be saying, we are all engaged in creating some kind of spectacle, each of us at the center of our own story. The theater exercises in which characters engage are designed to break down barriers between their fellows (barriers that keep getting thrown up through arguments or conflicts of artistic vision) and to bust any wall between emotion and reality. But all falls apart. Connection fails. The troupes split up. Language begins to run backwards or loop, underlining the difficulty of any of this happening at all. —Alissa Wilkinson



Director: Jean Cocteau

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In Jean Cocteau’s lyical and symbolism-heavy take on the myth of Orpheus—well, one of his takes; it was a trope to which he returned in two other films—Jean Marais plays the title role in 1950s Paris, where a plot rife with love-and-death triangles unfolds in Cocteau’s otherworldly, beautiful-but-cryptic style. This film is clearly the work of a poet (the Orpheus myth has preoccupied poets for centuries but Cocteau’s directorial style is also “poetic,” allusive and pensively paced) as well as an opium addict, definitely informing the dreamlike quality of the film and preoccupation with slipping between the worlds of the living and the dead. Were you to call Orphee pretentious you probably wouldn’t find anyone arguing with you, but it is also a relic of a cinematic era that is simply gone, and it’s one of that era’s more beautiful and intriguing artifacts. Whether his style delights or annoys you, Cocteau was indisputably a genius, and this expressive, magical, rather haunting film probably approaches poetry as closely as the medium of film can. —Amy Glynn



Director: Jean-Pierre Melville

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A story of those French citizens who for five long years resisted Nazi occupation, Army of Shadows is a black-and-white film made in color, Jean-Pierre Melville’s predominantly gray-blue color palette lending a chilly air to a decidedly bleak and minimalist saga less about the heroism of defiance and more about surviving the consequences of resistance. The film is as subdued as the phantom-like men and women fighting for reclamation of their land, visually as murky as the actions perpetrated by either side of the fight. Melville’s tenth feature was virtually unknown until 2006, when Army of Shadows—widely derided at home in a divided France upon initial release—finally opened in the United States to critical acclaim. In the wake of its relatively recent re-evaluation, it stands, along with Robert Bresson’s A Man Escaped and Louis Malle’s Lacombe, Lucien, as one of the defining films about the French resistance. —Brogan Morris



Director: Claude Berri

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Starring two of France’s most famous actors at the time, Gerard Depardieu and Yves Montand, this rural epic begins around a property dispute among farmers right after World War I, in which two conspirators (Montand and Daniel Auteuil) try to buy land from a hunchback novice, but after he refuses to sell, it’s a long road to ruin. This film and its sequel, Manon Des Sources—shot together and at the time the most expensive French production ever assembled—are gorgeous tributes to human cruelty and frailty. Such big sagas have to be incredibly compelling in order to avoid dullness, and this one manages the task with ease. —Shane Ryan



Director: Eric Rohmer

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Eric Rohmer’s 1970 Claire’s Knee—part New Wave, part standalone curiosity—has a bit of a strange plot: A diplomat vacationing in the French Alps (Jean-Claude Brialy) becomes obsessed with touching the knee of a local teenage girl (Laurence De Monaghan). I wish that description sounded less uncomfortable and borderline perverse, but I’d hasten to add that this desire does not represent the substance of the film. Instead, Rohmer’s produced an aching look at the passage of time, and the melancholy produced by the interplay between love and obsession. Though the protagonist here is not a monster of Humbert Humbert’s ilk, the way Rohner evokes these emotions is reminiscent of Lolita, in the sense that sexuality is only a subtext for something deeper. I’ve never seen a film with more beautiful pacing, that accomplishes such a modest plot turn with such patient, inexorable rhythm—it’s no surprise that the New York Times’ Vincent Canby called this “something close to a perfect film.” —Shane Ryan



Director: François Truffaut

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Sometimes a movie can be boiled down to its final shot. The Long Goodbye has Philip Marlowe, unhurriedly strolling down a road in Mexico, playing his harmonica after killing his best friend. 8 & ½ has young Guido, bringing down the lights as he marches along with his flute, sending the audience out of the theater wondering whether his presence affirms life or nods to death. The 400 Blows has Antoine Doinel gamboling about on the coast before François Truffaut’s camera zooms in on the boy’s face, freezing the frame just as his eyes meet with the lens. For anyone who saw Barry Jenkins’ Moonlight, that description probably sounds familiar, but this shot has been long-copied since The 400 Blows became a part of the cinematic canon after its 1959 release. (For example: Catherine Breillat’s Fat Girl, or even George Roy Hill’s Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid, which both use a similar effect to achieve altogether different ends.) In Truffaut’s film, the shot is meant as a capstone, or, if you prefer, the closing of a book: It’s the climax of one chapter in Doinel’s life, though Truffaut probably didn’t have any thought of making sequels to the film to begin with. Questions linger as the credits roll, and of course they should. When one comes of age, their next age begins, and so The 400 Blows leaves itself open at the last, leaving us to consider what fate may befall Antoine from here. —Andy Crump



Director: Michael Haneke

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The American title of Michael Haneke’s Caché is “Hidden,” which is a little bit of a joke. What’s “hidden” isn’t anything secretive or mysterious, but rather the racism, colonialism history and trauma that lurks beneath French national identity. The film’s razor sharp focus on a bourgeois French family, led by patriarch Georges (Daniel Auteuil), and the random, sinister surveillance videos they receive anonymously goads the viewer into looking closer—closer. (The film begins and ends with static shots of exteriors, replicating the voyeurism of the surveillance videos.) As Haneke excavates the complicated relationship between France and Algiers through exploring Georges’ past, he exacts his critique of French apathy and classicism in confronting what they’ve so long tried to hide. —Kyle Turner



Director: Jean-Luc Godard

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Rather than making a “proper” or “good” film, Godard has always tried to create something that isn’t what we’ve seen before. With Histoire(s) du cinema, he sought nothing less than to tie the history of movies to the history of the 20th century. At four-and-a-half hours long, divided into eight parts, and composed wholly of visual and audio “quotes” from seemingly countless other films, the documentary essay is considered, at the very least, Godard’s densest work, let alone that it represents Godard’s willingness to see the incomprehensible manifest at that impulse’s most obsessive. Some mainstream filmmakers will attempt a change-of-pace movie by shooting with a low budget or no stars. This is seen as “brave” and “risky.” That’s where Godard has always resided. This makes him a hero, even if it doesn’t make him particularly beloved. The combative, didactic quality of this film, of all of his films, gets him labeled a pretentious misanthrope. Even his most ardent supporters can become exasperated with him. Speaking generally about Godard’s oeuvre, David Thompson observed, “He is the first director, the first great director, who does not seem to be a human being.” —Tim Grierson



Director: Max Ophuls

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Cut against the director’s wishes in 1955 and restored in 2008, Max Ophuls’ Lola Montes is now finally available as intended: a progressive technicolor fantasia. Lola (Martine Carol), a 19th-century professional celebrity, is the star of a grand circus show in which Peter Ustinov’s ringmaster regales an audience with tales of a “femme fatale” countess scandalously defying the social norms of her time. Essentially, the act reinforces the Lola Montes myth; meanwhile, Ophuls gives us the messy reality. Flashbacks reveal the younger Montes as the gradually declining toast of Europe’s dance halls and palaces, often at the mercy of powerful men. In middle age, tortured thoughts of glories past and being paraded nightly for a physically demanding act are steadily killing Montes off. But, in an early example of soul-selling in order to retain some semblance of cultural relevance, Lola holds her health and private life cheap in order to sustain her celebrity. In that sense, Lola Montes belongs more to our times than it did over a half century ago. Visually, though, it remains very much a product of a bygone period, when serious cinema could reap all the lavish benefits of big studio funding. —Brogan Morris



Director: Henri-Georges Clouzot

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Watching Henri-Georges Clouzot’s Les Diaboliques through the lens of the modern horror film, especially the slasher flick—replete with un-killable villain (check); ever-looming jump scares (check); and a “final girl” of sorts (check?)—one would not have to squint too hard to see a new genre coming into being. You could even make a case for Clouzot’s canonization in horror, but to take the film on only those terms would miss just how masterfully the iconic French director could wield tension. Nothing about Les Diaboliques dips into the scummy waters of cheap thrills: The tightly wound tale of two women, a fragile wife (Véra Clouzot) and severe mistress (Simone Signoret) to the same abusive man (Paul Meurisse), who conspire to kill him in order to both reel in the money rightfully owed the wife, and to rid the world of another asshole, Diaboliques may not end with a surprise outcome for those of us long inured to every modern thriller’s perfunctory twist, but it’s still a heart-squeezing two hours, a murder mystery executed flawlessly. That Clouzot preceded this film with The Wages of Fear y Le Corbeau seems as surprising as the film’s outcome: By the time he’d gotten to Les Diaboliques, the director’s grasp over pulpy crime stories and hard-nosed drama had become pretty much his brand. That the film ends with a warning to audiences to not give away the ending for others—perhaps Clouzot also helped invent the spoiler alert?—seems to make it clear that even the director knew he had something devilishly special on his hands. —Dom Sinacola



Director: Jean-Pierre Melville

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John Woo wrote about Jean-Pierre Melville’s way with actors: “He made them stars; he made them crystal.” In Le Cercle Rouge, Melville’s obsession with gangsters—with the timeless, dirty struggle between good guys and bad guys—culminates at the swift, crimson end of a remarkably precise piece of work. Though it moves on rails, its characters restless and always running from someone, the movie seems to exist solely within beautifully reticulated tableaus, handsome bad boy Alain Delon encased flawlessly inside each sexy chrysalis. Woo was right: Melville’s tragic anti-heroes, disciplined and effortlessly dapper, traversed the dark side of the law with half a mind they were doomed—but at least guaranteed a glorious death. If played right, that is. Throughout his tale of a small criminal brotherhood planning one last dignified jewel heist, Melville’s criminals always seem to get what they have coming. Whether or not that means anything doesn’t seem to matter when they’re gunned down running from the cops, fleeing from one defeat to another. —Dom Sinacola



Director: Krzysztof Kieslowski

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Using the colors blue, white and red as the focus of his “Trois Couleurs” trilogy, Krzysztof Kieslowski manifests the ideals of the French Republic—liberty, equality, fraternity—through zealous accuracy. The atmospheres presented in each film are highlighted by the scores written by Zbigniew Preisner, Blue probably being the most important of all, musically. In this first entry, the viewer is introduced to Julie de Courcy (Juliette Binoche), the sole survivor of a car crash in which her husband and daughter were killed. Her husband was the famous composer Oliver Benôit (Benoít Régent), who had been working on a score to celebrate the European unity at the end of the Cold War, and Oliver’s music accompanies Julie’s daily struggles, taking on different tones depending on the circumstances surrounding her. Following her family’s death, as an act of defiance, Julie destroys the score, rids herself of all her possessions and moves to Paris, avoiding all memories of the past—taking only her daughter’s blue chandelier. In each film of the trilogy, one object links them to the past: the blue chandelier, the bust of the protagonist’s lost love in White, and in Red a fountain pen which plays an important role. A recurring image seen throughout Blue is that of people falling, suggesting that of all of the films, Julie’s process of letting go, of finding the “freedom” of the trilogy’s three ideals, may be the most emotionally obliterating. —Roxanne Sancto



Director: Chris Marker

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Unfortunately—or perhaps saliently—the best documentaries are those that revel in their medium, that roll around in and burrow into and laugh at the flagrant manipulation of truth that lies at the heart of even the basest cinéma vérité. Leave it to Chris Marker, who’d already trolled his synapses with the sci-fi masterpiece La Jetée, to craft an unparalleled film about the imperfections of filmmaking—and about cats. So many cats. Compiled of disparate images from Marker’s colleagues, his own travels and filmmakers such as Andrei Tarkovsky and Alfred Hitchcock, focused prominently on Japan and Guinea-Bissau out of many locales, Sans Soleil is, above all, a meditation on the imperfection of memory. Which is why its most striking images will forever stay with you: the poaching of a giraffe, the vultures that eat the giraffe’s softest remains, the shrine to cats, the JFK robot, the petrified desert animals, the art exhibit of taxidermied creatures posed in erotic gestures, the seemingly primeval digital manipulations of celebrity vignettes, the teenagers dancing, and the many visions of extreme emotion forever lost to time. Seemingly about everything just as it is about one person’s awe-struck experiences trotting across the globe, Sans Soleil touches on the ineffable with the wit and grandeur of someone remarkably in sync with some sort of subconscious matrix that binds us all, with Jungian fervor, inextricably together. —Dom Sinacola



Director: Chantal Akerman

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Belgian director Chantal Akerman built a formidable edifice of domesticity in order to pull it down piece by piece, habit by habit, hourly ritual by daily routine. The title of her second film, a name and a location, reflects a submission to a time and to a place, and over the course of nearly three and a half hours, Akerman defines that name, Jeanne Dielman (Delphine Seyrig), through the ways in which Dielman—mother, single homemaker, occasional prostitute—fills that location, a small Brussels apartment of modest means, with the cooking and cleaning and mothering and fornication of a person trapped within the order and regiment of a society that doesn’t so much care for her as expect her to continue to uphold that order, all for the benefit of the men in her life, who make no attempt to understand the intricacies of what she’s accomplished. On the first day, Akerman establishes Jeanne Dielman’s quotidian, an architecture of perfectly calibrated chores, meals, joyless sex, vigorous bathing and thankless evenings spent with her aloof wad of a son (Jan Decorte), all of which she assembles seamlessly seemingly for him, and for no one else. On the second day, a few items go awry, Jeanne overcooks the potatoes and remainders begin to appear in the facade of her daily algorithm. On the third day, chasms open in the midst of her everyday pattern, Jeanne unable to fill that space with anything at all, because she has nothing save for that structure, no passion or personality besides the ways in which she coddles her progeny and basely satisfies her clients. In the midst of literal minutes worth of Jeanne sitting, staring, silent, Akerman introduces tension by default: When Jeanne Dielman can no longer be manifest through her methodical fulfilling of the mundane, does she even exist anymore? Akerman responds with violence, pointless and fatal—followed by more sitting, more staring and the bleak notion that the life lived within the walls of this film may not be anything more than a name, a place and a single act of humanity. —Dom Sinacola



Director: Jean-Luc Godard

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When I think of Jean-Luc Godard’s 1963 Contempt, my mind immediately goes in two directions. First, to the lovely, melancholy theme by George Delerue (which I often seek out like a favorite memory), and second, to the images of the startlingly blue Mediterranean and the sheer cliffs on the Italian coast. On some level this is a superficial recollection, because there is so much more to this subtly structured film-within-a-film, and the “contempt” of the title is what the (agonizingly beautiful) Camille Javal (Brigitte Bardot) feels for her screenwriter husband (Michel Piccoli) when he seemingly offers her companionship to a gauche producer (played with terrific sleaze by Jack Palance) in order to improve his position. But like the best Godard movies of the New Wave period, the emotion of loss pervades, and in that sense the persistence of the music and the Capri coastline makes sense: When the details fade, the poetry remains, and in his prime Godard could capture the intangible, fleeting sense of lost time like nobody else. —Shane Ryan



Director: François Truffaut

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Day for Night follows the production of a film and co-stars the director himself, but Truffaut never allows his meta-commentary on moviemaking and the corresponding industry to become egregiously philosophical or cloying. Instead, Truffaut crafts it as an intimate character study, which, as is always the case with the director, exists as a love story that evolves into an ode to film. Focusing on the cast and crew, Truffaut gives special attention to the romances and drama between them, exploring how such dynamics invariably influence and inform their final product, how the director can’t help but translate his passion into something that ultimately transcends that passion. —Shane Ryan



Director: Jacques Tati

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Excepting people with rural dispositions, we’ve all visited unfamiliar cities at one time or another, puttering about their streets in discombobulated states. That experience is the core of Jacques Tati’s Playtime, his fourth venture as his most famous character, the bumbling Monsieur Hulot, here taking a jaunt to Paris and finding it unrecognizable on his arrival. He understands Paris as an abstract idea and as a place in his memories, but he can’t get his head around the Paris of the film’s present tense. In Playtime, any metropolitan city in Europe could stand in for Paris. Only fleeting glimpses of La Ville-Lumière reminds us of Tati’s chosen backdrop, and in those instances we feel, as Hulot does, a deep melancholy, a wistfulness for a locus of culture and romanticism long sentimentalized by the movies, and utter despondency at the implications of its cold modernization in Playtime’s frames. If this can happen to Paris, it can happen to any city we hold dear in our hearts. Make no mistake, this is an uproarious comedy and a towering work of cinema, but it’s Tati’s embedded sense of loss that echoes the loudest. —Andy Crump



Director: Alain Resnais

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Alain Resnais’s 1959 masterpiece begins like a documentary, one reminiscent of his harrowing 1955 nonfiction short Night and Fog, except focused on the aftermath of the atomic bomb dropped on Hiroshima during World War II. Instead of an omniscient voiceover narrator, however, we hear what we eventually discover are two lovers: a French actress (Emmanuelle Riva) and a Japanese architect (Eiji Okada) who, in the present day, have met in Hiroshima are both carrying on extramarital affairs with each other, even as they realize it can’t last. It sounds like pure Casablanca-like forbidden romance, but under Resnais and screenwriter Marguerite Duras, Hiroshima Mon Amour touches on broader ideas: chiefly, the potential impossibility of art to measure up to personal experience and memory. The man’s repeated incantations to the woman that “You saw nothing in Hiroshima” suggests a level of perspective on the horrific event that even she, starring in a well-meaning “movie about peace,” can’t possibly access. She can only try to identify through her own experience as a tormented outsider in the village in which she grew up—but really, how can even that possibly measure up to the devastation of such a horrific event? Even Hiroshima itself, as captured in black-and-white by cinematographers Sacha Vierny and Michio Takahashi, seems to want to try to forget its past, by covering it up in a preponderance of neon lights. Resnais aids Duras’s reflections on history and memory with a then-groundbreaking editing style that fluidly goes back and forth between past and present. The enduring miracle of Hiroshima Mon Amour, though, is that all its formal and philosophical ambition doesn’t obscure the poignance of its central romance, especially with Emmanuelle Riva’s indelible expressions of passion, anguish, and regret. —Kenji Fujishima



Director: Agnès Varda

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There’s an argument that the explicit subject of The Gleaners & I—gleaners, their habits and practices—isn’t nearly as important as the woman at the center of it, director Agnès Varda. Her place in the film is deliberate—in telling the story of French gleaners, rural and urban scavengers protected by a series of hilariously specific but often debated French laws, Varda frames herself as a gleaner, a fellow traveller in a world of thrift-minded men and women who survive on what others throw away. As Varda follows gleaners who comb farmer’s fields for leftover produce and urban landscapes for food and other curiosities, the story mutates into a semi-autobiographical narrative about Varda herself, and the simple pleasures of finding. I love the film because it pings several intellectual currents in the late 1990s and early 2000s related to the sharing of information and memory thanks to the Internet. The Gleaners & I becomes a lo-fi take on memory, curating, nostalgia and the reframing of discarded cultural detritus, which itself becomes a metaphor for the film’s argument: that the world of poverty might also be reframed, because Varda’s exhaustive studies show the spirit of gleaning is strong among people of all walks of life. Her wonderful presence at the center of these discussions makes the film deeply personal and brimming with optimism, but also far more profound than its subject matter might suggest. —Mark Abraham



Director: Robert Bresson

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Robert Bresson may have a rep for being one of the most forbidding French arthouse auteurs, but the idea that the filmmaker is somehow cold or inaccessible is far from the truth. Even if the worlds he depicts are cloistered and sometimes cruel, there’s always at least a hint of warmth and grace. In Au Hasard Balthasar, a Catholic allegory of shocking, pure visual power, Bresson records the travails of a lowly donkey, passed from owner to owner in the French countryside and living a life of humiliation and abuse at the hands of mankind. With his detailed close-ups of hands, eyes and the donkey’s mournful snout, Bresson implies movement and feeling rather than explicitly showing them. Following that allusive and time-generous approach, the result is absorbing and a little bit overwhelming: Au Hasard Balthasar gives plenty of time for its audience to meditate on man’s cruelty to this beast of burden. The donkey Balthasar is silent witness to malicious goings-on between humans, until he is ultimately transformed by the love of a young woman (Anne Wiazemsky) and sacrificed in a Christ-like conception of suffering and martyrdom. A masterpiece packed with spare imagery and dense ideas about doubt and faith, infused with as much religiosity as a medieval painting, Au Hasard Balthasar must be seen on its own terms, with an open mind. It almost single-handedly proves cinema is an enduring, world-shaking art-form—and might even be able to convert some atheists. —Christina Newland



Director: Costa-Gavras

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Fifty years before political trolling became a day-to-day activity, Greek-French director Costa-Gavras, patron saint of political thrillers, perfected the art with his timeless French-language masterpiece, Z. Just how timeless? By opening with a twist on the usual disclaimer found at the front of most movies, stating with undeniable fury that the events within are based on real people and real actions, Gavras shows the audience that he’s not fucking around from frame one, especially considering that Z is about how an authoritarian right-wing party bullied and killed its way to power as it destroyed his native country of Greece, leading to an oppressive military coup. Throughout, Gavras showcases a deviously methodical control over what appears on the surface to be fly-on-the-wall camerawork, complete with handheld footage, jump cuts and grainy photography, until we gradually realize that his anger about the political atrocities committed in his home country has permeated Z with a satirical tone mercilessly mocking those in power as petulant children. Based on Grigoris Lambrakis’s novel, the film begins as a left-wing leader, also Grigoris Lambrakis (Yves Montand), tries to protect himself from the violent attacks of right-wing thugs secretly on the payroll of right-wing politicians. He doesn’t succeed. By casting the instantly likable Montand in the part, Gavras encourages us to sympathize with the protagonist’s motivations, only to abruptly rip him from us. This, in turn, has the audience feel the pain of the loss the way Lambrakis’s supporters do, creating an intractable connection to the narrative. The rest of the film focuses on the ensuing investigation of Lambrakis’s murder, with a solid performance by Jean-Louis Trintignant as the chief examiner in charge of the case, until it results in an epilogue that’s equal parts morbidly satirical, tragic and inevitable. —Oktay Ege Kozak



Director: Jean Renoir

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When Rules of the Game—Jean Renoir’s angry satire against the contempt the bourgeoisie displays for the working class—was first shown to an audience, a man who heard of the film’s supposed communist message tried to start a fire. In an interview that can be found on the film’s Criterion release, Renoir tells this story, adding that if someone is willing to burn down a theater to destroy your work, you must have done something right. Rules of the Game operates as an ensemble melodrama about the various secret and not-so-secret love affairs between a group of upper-crust stereotypes, but underneath this straight genre veneer lies a brutally honest takedown of ruling class apathy. Renoir meticulously and gradually exposes his characters’ narcissism, until the film’s climax presents us with a sociopathic choice made between supposed best friends. Yet, as much as he obviously sympathizes with the plight of the working class serving the rich, Renoir doesn’t let them off the hook either, portraying their impulsive and brutish behavior as potentially one of the reasons behind their station in life. Despite all of that, Rules of the Game is not a joyless experience, but a refreshingly honest take on romance between classes—as well as an early cinematic exploration and exposing of the intractable human nature behind income inequality and class warfare. —Oktay Ege Kozak



Director: Alain Resnais

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Released 10 years after the liberation of prisoners from the Nazi concentration camps, Night and Fog was almost never made. Any number of reasons contributed to its tenuous birth: that noted documentary director Resnais refused repeated attempts to helm the movie, insisting that a survivor of the camps be intimately involved, until screenwriter Jean Cayrol came on board, himself a survivor of the Mauthausen-Gusen camp; that Resnais and collaborators battled both French and German censors upon potential Cannes release; or that both Resnais and Cayrol themselves struggled with especially graphic footage, unsure of how to properly and comprehensively depict the unmitigated horror of what they were undertaking. Regardless, the film found release and is today, even at only 31 minutes, an eviscerating account of life in the camps: their origins, their architecture and their inner-workings. Yet, most of all, Night and Fog is a paean to the power of art to shake history down to its foundational precedents. Look only to its final moments, in which, over images of the dead, emaciated and piled endlessly in mass graves, narrator Michel Bouquet simply asks to know who is responsible. Who did this? Who allowed this to happen? Which is so subtly subversive—especially given the film’s quiet filming of Auschwitz and Majdanek, overgrown and abandoned, accompanied by lyrical musings and a strangely buoyant score—because rarely do documentaries demand such answers. Rarely do documentaries ask such questions. Rarely is truth taken to task, bled of all subjectivity, and placed naked before the audience. Here is evil, undeniably—what will you do about this? —Dom Sinacola



Director: Georges Franju

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I remember seeing my first Édith Scob performance back in 2012, when Leos Carax’s Holy Motors made its way to U.S. shores, in which she donned a seafoam mask, every bit as blank and lacking in expression as Michael Myers’, in the film’s ending. I thought to myself, “Gee, that’d play like gangbusters in a horror movie.” What an idiot I was: Scob had already appeared in that movie, Georges Franju’s Eyes Without a Face, an icy, poetic and yet lovingly made film about a woman and her mad scientist dad, who just wants to kidnap young ladies that share her facial features in hopes of grafting their skin onto her own disfigured mug. (That’s father of the year material right there.) Of course, nothing goes smoothly in the film’s narrative, and the whole thing ends in tears—plus a frenzy of canine bloodlust. Director Franju plays Eyes Without a Face in just the right register, balancing the unnerving, the perverse and the intimate, as the most enduring pulpy horror tales tend to do. If Franju gets to claim most of the credit for that, at least save a portion for Scob, whose eyes are the single best special effect in the film’s repertoire. Hers is a performance that stems right from the soul. —Andy Crump



Director: Henri-Georges Clouzot

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About an hour has passed before Henri-Georges Clouzot’s film reaches its real plot—a whole hour before our four impoverished expatriates take on the death-defying gig of driving two trucks filled with nitroglycerine across 300 treacherous miles, from the South American oil town of Las Piedras to the site of an oil field explosion overseen by an American corporation. Clouzot sets his stakes simply: Because nitroglycerine is so volatile, and because the corporation does not have the proper transportation equipment available, volunteers must, with exquisite care, drive trucks full of the chemical across mountainous terrain to be used to damper the oil fire with a huge controlled explosion. But that journey doesn’t begin until after Clouzot has waded through the stagnant world of our drivers, introducing us to the kind of men who rarely deal in the currency of hope: Corsican lothario Mario (Yves Montand), warm-hearted Italian Luigi (Folco Lulli), slippery ex-gangster Jo (Charles Vanel) and stoic German cool guy Bimba (Peter van Eyck) are each trapped in the town, wasting away their interminable time there with odd jobs, liquor and local women. With almost effortless allegorical control, Clouzot strands the men at the mercy of American capitalism, giving them the choice to continue to die slowly in Las Piedras, or risk their lives for enough money to finally get out (which is really no choice at all). Rather than cast them as heroes and future martyrs, Clouzot’s wallowing with them in Las Piedras exposes their ne’er-do-well natures, such as Mario’s womanizing, Bimba’s near-sociopathic aloofness and Jo’s latent cowardice. Even with such unpleasantness, we grit our teeth and hold our breath as these anti-heroes teeter over the maw of their own inevitable obliteration, Clouzot knowing full well he’s got us by our throats. In its unbelievable tension, The Wages of Fear can be a harrowing watch, but it’s shot with such a total dearth of sentimentality that the bleakness of the landscape Clouzot’s created forces us to care about those who don’t deserve it. We have affection not because Clouzot’s manipulated us, but simply because these broken men are as much at the mercy of an indifferent universe as we are, ruled by fate and classism and whatever else we’ll never control, whether we know it or not. —Dom Sinacola



Director: Agnès Varda

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Halfway through Agnès Varda’s sophomore film, the titular Cléo (Corinne Marchand), a pop singer awaiting the potentially devastating results of some sort of medical test, looks directly into the camera, weeping as she sings a song during an otherwise typical practice session. It’s a revelatory moment: Varda addresses her audience directly through her character addressing her audience directly, all while on the precipice of total dissolution. Cléo, a beautiful, burgeoning celebrity, seems to understand that she may be empty without her looks, just as she rails against the forces that put her in such an untenable position. In other words, realizing in that moment of melodrama, of the heightened emotion she knows all too well is the stuff of pop music at its most marketably patronizing, that her attractiveness may be soon over, she’s driven to tears, unable to reconcile her talent with her face, or her fragility with her livelihood, leaving it to the audience to decide whether she deserves our sympathy or not. If not, Varda wonders, then why not? Shot practically in real time, Cléo from 5 to 7 waits along with our character as she waits for life-changing news, floating from coffee shop to home to park to wherever, not doing much of anything with the life she has, the life she may find out she’s losing soon enough. She watches a silent film featuring cameos by Jean-Luc Godard and Anna Karina, meets a soldier on leave from the Algerian front (Antoine Bourseiller) who confesses he believes people are dying for nothing, drives past a murder scene and senses that the universe maybe has misdirected her bad luck towards another soul. One of the defining films of the Left Bank branch of the French New Wave (as opposed to those of the “Right Bank,” the more famous films of Truffaut and Godard, the movement’s more commercial, cosmopolitan cinephiles), Cléo from 5 to 7 is a fever dream of the ordinary, a meditation on the nothingness of everyday living, as existential as it is blissfully bereft of purpose. —Dom Sinacola



Director: Louis Malle

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Au revoir les enfants portrays one French schoolboy’s (very limited) view of the Holocaust in a manner both reserved yet devastating. Set in a Catholic boarding school in France, Louis Malle’s Golden Lion-winning film follows a pampered rich boy (Gaspard Manesse) as he befriends a new classmate who is secretly a Jew (Raphaël Fejtö) harbored by the boarding school’s benevolent priest (Philippe Morier-Genoud). Malle based the film on his own childhood, effortlessly imbuing it with a quiet simplicity that allows its saddest, potentially melodramatic moments to be gut-wrenchingly real. Along with cinematographer Renato Berta, Malle merely lets the camera linger; in one scene, in particular, he films an empty passageway, beautifully emphasizing a terrible moment that his main character—and his audience—will never forget. —Jeremy Mathews



Director: Claude Lanzmann

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Describing this 10-hour landmark of documentary filmmaking—of filmmaking in general, is ostensibly an easy task: Director Claude Lanzmann foregoes using any archival or historical footage to allow only the testimonials of survivors and historians to tell, in breathtaking detail that is both sweeping and deeply intimate, the story of the Holocaust. We are given hours to reflect as we join these beleaguered people: They walk us through Treblinka, through Auschwitz, through the Warsaw ghettos, through Chelmno, where the first mobile gas chambers were used—through the night and fog of memory. And though the film has been greeted with controversy, especially by Poles who feel that it in many ways indicts them in the atrocities committed, there is no other cinematic experience like it. —Dom Sinacola



Director: Chris Marker

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At only 28 minutes, La Jetée is somewhere between a film and art piece. Its concept—black and white photos pieced together while an omniscient narrator explains what’s happening—quickly announces its symbolic purpose: a man (Davos Hanich), whose story we’re told as plainly as possible we are now a part of, can travel relatively painlessly through time because of a few stark images he’s carried with him since childhood. World War III has decimated Paris, reducing most citizens to desperate “guinea pig” status, used by Scientists to concoct time travel experiments “to call past and future to the rescue of the present.” Most of the helpless jerks launched through time end up going mad, unable to mentally “hold” themselves to a time their minds aren’t conditioned to endure. But the aforementioned man is stronger than them: He is “glued to an image of his past.” So how better can a filmmaker believably reproduce memory than obsess over the stillness of it? Rarely do we fixate on a whole detailed sequence, instead dwelling on one detail, one image branded into our brain tissue. The man’s is that of a pier (“la jetée”), someone dying in epic silhouette and a woman’s face. It’s that image that allows him to travel (without machine) through time, to visit our “present” in order to prevent his “future.” Like in Twelve Monkeys, Terry Gilliam’s upsetting re-imagining of Marker’s film, redirecting fate is easier said than done. As the man confronts his destiny, no other film since La Jetée has made the concept of time travel so personal, and the concept of time so sad. —Dom Sinacola



Director: François Truffaut

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Widely regarded as a French touchstone, François Truffaut’s classic WWI-era love triangle is based on a semi-autobiographical novel of the same title by Henri-Pierre Roche, which Truffaut stumbled across in a Paris bookstore in the 1950s. The adaptation tells the tragic story of Jim (Henri Serre), a French Bohemian, Jules (Oskar Werner), his Austrian friend, and Catherine (Jeanne Moreau), Jules’ girlfriend/wife. The two men are besotted with Catherine, who bears an eerie resemblance to a statue they both love. She marries Jules. The war breaks out, and the two men, on opposing sides of the conflict, struggle with the fear that one might unwittingly kill the other in battle. (What actually happens is arguably worse.) Both survive, and later, Jim visits Jules and Catherine in their Black Forest cottage. Jules confides he’s miserable, that Catherine has constant affairs, has left him and their baby, Sabine, for months at a time, and that he lives in terror of losing her. Catherine tries to seduce Jim. The three try an experimental situation where Catherine is with both men, but tragedy only ensues from there. Perhaps a definitive example of the French New Wave, the film incorporates a vast lexicon of cinematic techniques—newsreel footage, stills, wipes, panning shots, freeze-frames, voiceover narration (by Michel Subor)—though shades of its towering influence in subsequent films, television and music are almost innumerable. —Amy Glynn



Director: Jacques Demy

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Jacques Demy’s masterpiece is a soaring, vibrant, innately bittersweet story of love lost, found and forever disbanded, another wartime casualty in a country scarred by military conflict. The Umbrellas of Cherbourg is lived-in, a story derived from Demy’s life experience, and that keyword—“experience”—is essential to making the film click. Take away its musical cues, and you’re left with a narrative about a young man (Nino Castelnuovo) and a young woman (Catherine Deneuve) who fall deeply in love with one another, only to be torn apart when he’s drafted to fight overseas. The story remains rooted in Demy’s pathos, and pathos gives Umbrellas’ gravity. The music, of course, is a critical part of its character, a dose of magic Demy uses to buttress the rigors of life in wartime with grandeur and meaning. It’s a film about people in love falling out of love, and then falling in love all over again with new partners and altered sentiments, a beautiful picture as likely to make you swoon as to crush your heart. —Andy Crump



Director: Carl Theodor Dreyer

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Renée Jeanne Falconetti’s face is in your brain, whether you’re aware of it there or not. Its contours and stipples, topped by hair shorn of substance or style—her head centered by two wide eyes rimmed with tears, always in some sort of superposition between ecstasy and misery—consumes boundless space in Danish director Carl Th. Dreyer’s silent masterpiece, seemingly suspended over the long course of history between now (whenever now happens to be) and when Dreyer first envisioned this immersive, expressionist experience. Dreyer wrote of his film, “What counted was getting the spectator absorbed in the past,” and then explained further, “A thorough study of the documents from the rehabilitation process was necessary; I did not study the clothes of the time, and things like that. The year of the event seemed as inessential to me as its distance from the present.” Though The Passion of Joan of Arc Dreyer based on the 1491 transcripts of its titular saint’s trial for heresy (the director welcomed by the Société Générale des Films to make a film in France, his choice of subject bolstered by France’s canonization of Joan of Arc after World War I), he provides little visual detail or historical context. Instead he submerges the viewer in Joan’s perspective, keeps his hand on our heads as we drown in the torment of what she’s subjected to, rarely releasing his weight except for in the film’s final moments, when Joan’s brutal execution at the stake unleashes violence throughout the citizenry. But mostly: that face, awestruck throughout time. Most notably, in Jean-Luc Godard’s Vivre sa vie, the director watches as his protagonist, Nana (Anna Karina), watches Joan of Arc, lighting her tear-streaked face in close-up as she experiences something of the same images before her. Godard reflects Falconetti’s face in Karina’s, spanning more than three decades as if they’re nothing. There is perhaps no better ode to the power of what Dreyer achieved: Timelessness borne by the tragedy of our all too weak, all too human, flesh. —Dom Sinacola