This is a film made of interviews of the film director Jacques Rivette, by a film critic ("Les Cahiers du Cinéma"), Serge Daney.


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Episode cast overview:
Serge Daney ...
Bulle Ogier ...
Jean Babilée ...
Jean-François Stévenin ...


This film of interviews with the film director Jacques Rivette was produced in collaboration with Serge Daney, film critic from "Cahiers du cinéma", then of "Liberation". In the course of their conversations, the two speakers discuss Rivette's career, his relationships with the other film makers of the new wave, his use of "mise en scene" and his working with actors. Written by anonymous

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Release Date:

28 February 1994 (France)  »

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(archive footage)|
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Masterful examination of a mysterious director's life and work
21 March 2007 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

The film opens with the always nattily-dressed 62-year-old filmmaker walking through a gallery exhibition devoted to the French painter Jean Fautrier, ironically (or not?) as obscure and unknown as Rivette himself. Then we move to a café where the discussion proper begins with the great "New Wave" critic Serge Danay questioning Rivette about faces and bodies -- the reason that he was invited to the Fautrier exhibit being that the filmmakers saw a link between painter and director in this area. Most of the next two hours proceeds with Danay attempting to elicit interesting responses from Rivette on a variety of topics and themes: the beginning of the New Wave, his childhood, language and literature, Paris, architecture, acting, and most of all, the joys of filmgoing and criticism. This is an exceptionally well-done and involving documentary that shifts between various types of locales within Paris, mirroring Rivette's own fictional explorations of the never quite gets to the depths, the heart and soul of this great filmmaker, but that's OK: we are constantly reminded of how private and solitary an individual Rivette is. No doubt my high rating reflects both my passion for the director's work and the resonance I feel with his solitary intellectual (largely self-taught) lifestyle, but I think that anyone genuinely interested in the Nouvelle Vague who has seen a couple of films by the subject will get something out of this nicely-shot and minimally edited film. Scenes from several of the director's works are included, all rarely scene outside of (maybe in?) France, the longest and most fascinating being from Duelle and L'amour fou. Subtitled, bootleg video from British TV (I think), 122 minute cut.

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