French Resistance activist Andre Devigny is imprisoned by the Nazis, and devotes his waking hours to planning an elaborate escape. Then, on the same day, he is condemned to death, and given... See full summary »
Charles Le Clainche,
One of the greatest masterpieces of the 20th century, Sergei Parajanov's "Color of the Pomegranate," a biography of the Armenian troubadour Sayat Nova (King of Song) reveals the poet's life... See full summary »
By 1960 the documentary had evolved with new sound equipment and lighter cameras. In a direct line from the ideas of Flaherty and Vertov, Canadian filmmakers as Michel Brault had made significant shorts as "Les raquetteurs" (1959), while in the United States Robert Drew created his seminal work, "Primary" (1960.) All this activity helped the launching of "cinéma vérité" in France, with this film manifesto made by anthropologist Jean Rouch and sociologist Edgar Morin. With a "caméra vivant" (living camera) and the question "Are you happy?", they went out to the streets of Paris to make a survey, showing passages in the life of students, workers and migrants (including Joris Ivens' future wife), with a short escapade to the St. Tropez beach, and a final confrontation of the creators and subjects with the footage and the idea of constructing objective pieces of reality on film. Rouch and American Frederick Wiseman believed in a kind of documentary open to emotional spaces and fantasy (as opposed, for example, to Richard Leacock's more naturalistic approach), and eventually changed the tone of their works, while the movement finally identified with the concept of "direct cinéma", developed by Canadians and American filmmakers.
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