10 October 2012 4:53 AM, PDT | The Guardian - Film News | See recent The Guardian - Film News news »

Otto Preminger's restored classic showcases both his own tyrannical genius and the fleeting luminosity of Jean Seberg

In 1956, at the age of 18, Jean Seberg – one of more than 18,000 wannabes in a Hollywood X Factor-style search for a new star – was plucked from obscurity by director Otto Preminger. She went on to become a cinematic icon in Jean Luc Godard's seminal film Breathless four years later and killed herself at 40, following years of personal turmoil exacerbated by the infamous lies spread about her by the FBI.

François Truffaut described Seberg as "the best actress in Europe", but we are left with glimpses of fleeting luminosity from a faltering career and tragically short life. One of those outstanding moments came in Preminger's Bonjour Tristesse, newly restored and screened this month at the London film festival. The movie is now widely regarded as a prime example of Hollywood's golden age, »

- Tony Paley

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