A young couple, Renee and Pierre, take one night a room at the Hotel du Nord, in Paris, near the canal Saint-Martin. They want to die together, but after having shooted at Renee, Pierre ... See full summary »
A wanted gangster is both king and prisoner of the Casbah. He is protected from arrest by his friends, but is torn by his desire for freedom outside. A visiting Parisian beauty may just tempt his fate.
A French farce set in Victorian London where a botanist and his wife get into trouble when they pretend to go missing in order to hide from their sanctimonious cousin -- an Anglican bishop who is leading a campaign against such writing.
During the first World War, two French soldiers are captured and imprisoned in a German P.O.W. camp. Several escape attempts follow until they are sent to a seemingly impenetrable fortress which seems impossible to escape from.
At the end of the 15th century, two minstrels Gilles and Dominique come from nowhere into the castle of Baron Hugues. Gilles charms Anne, Hughes' daughter, while Dominique charms both ... See full summary »
In an open-air dance hall, the members of Leca's gang are relaxing with their ladies. One of them, Marie, aka "Casque d'Or" (Golden Helmet) meets Manda, a carpenter. Her man Roland belongs ... See full summary »
A charismatic thief makes friends with a bankrupt baron who comes to live in the thief's slum. Meanwhile the thief seeks the love of a young woman, who is held emotionally captive by her slumlord family.
Life's a rotten business, says Jean, a deserter who arrives at night in Le Havre, looking to leave the country. He lucks into civilian clothes, a little bit of money, a passport, and a dog, and he also meets Nelly, a 17-year-old who's grown up too fast. She's the object of lust of men: including a boyfriend Maurice, her putative protector Zabel, and Lucien, a local hood. Jean falls for her, faces down Lucien, and gives her courage to stand on her own feet. A ship is leaving for Venezuela; can at least one of them be on it, or is that just a dream? Written by
Some may notice that the Le Havre setting, while realistic, seems to have a slightly strange perspective. This is because the streets were constructed with a "false perspective" technique: the buildings were gradually scaled down in size the farther they go into the background; when shot with the proper camera lens, such a street will seem to stretch away from the camera up to four times longer than it actually does. See more »
What could be simpler than a tree?
A tree. But when I paint one, it sets everyone on edge. It's because there's someone or something hidden behind that tree. I can't help painting what's hidden behind things. To me a swimmer is already a drowned man.
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The version I watched is the one released in 2004 on Criterion. This comes with a 30-page booklet with an essay by Luc Sante and an excerpt from Marcel Carne's autobiography. The DVD has a very clear picture and crisp sound. I found the story quite interesting and was impressed by each the actors. There is one scene which makes use of classical music during a moment of violence. It made me think of a movie made much later, Stanley Kubrick's A CLOCKWORK ORANGE. PORT OF SHADOWS is about degrees of violence. The adolescent thugs who terrorize the little port city of Le Havre have no idea of what is hidden in the lives of the two protagonists: A soldier who has deserted the army after going through something unspeakable in Tonkin and the urbane middle-aged man who has had enough of losing. I think the inevitability of the events in this movie bothers many people who have reviewed it on this database. It doesn't bother me.
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