Remembrance of Things to Come (2003)
"Le souvenir d'un avenir" (original title)

Video  |   |  Documentary, Short  |  28 May 2003 (USA)
Your rating:
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 -/10 X  
Ratings: 7.6/10 from 160 users  
Reviews: 2 user | 10 critic

Through photos made by the French photographer Denise Bellon, a personnal history of France.

0Check in

Watch Now

From $1.99 on Amazon Video




Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  

Paris 2002. Yellow cats appears on the walls. Chris Marker is looking for these mysterious cats and captures with his camera the political and international events of these last two years (war in Iraq...).

Director: Chris Marker
Stars: Bertrand Cantat, Dieudonné, Léon Schwartzenberg
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.2/10 X  

French essay film focusing on global political turmoil in the 1960s and '70s, particularly the rise of the New Left in France and the development of socialist movements in Latin America.

Director: Chris Marker
Stars: Laurence Cuvillier, Davos Hanich, François Maspero
Documentary | Biography | History
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.1/10 X  

This documentary tells the story of film director Aleksandr Medvedkin, throughout his life a sincere believer in communism, whose films were repeatedly banned in the Soviet Union. Modern ... See full summary »

Director: Chris Marker
Stars: Léonor Graser, Nikolai Izvolov, Kira Paramonova
Sans Soleil (1983)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.2/10 X  

"He wrote me...." A woman narrates the thoughts of a world traveler, meditations on time and memory expressed in words and images from places as far-flung as Japan, Guinea-Bissau, Iceland, ... See full summary »

Director: Chris Marker
Stars: Florence Delay, Arielle Dombasle, Riyoko Ikeda
Le joli mai (1963)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8/10 X  

Chris Marker and Pierre Lhomme's LE JOLI MAI (The Lovely Month of May) is a portrait of Paris and Parisians during May 1962;the first springtime of peace after the ceasefire with Algeria ... See full summary »

Directors: Chris Marker, Pierre Lhomme
Stars: Chris Marker, Yves Montand, Simone Signoret
La Jetée (1962)
Short | Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.4/10 X  

Time travel, still images, a past, present and future and the aftermath of World War III. The tale of a man, a slave, sent back and forth, in and out of time, to find a solution to the ... See full summary »

Director: Chris Marker
Stars: Étienne Becker, Jean Négroni, Hélène Chatelain
Documentary | Drama | War
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  

In seven different segments, Godard, Klein, Lelouch, Marker, Resnais and Varda show their sympathy and support for the North Vietnamese army during the Vietnam war.

Directors: Joris Ivens, William Klein, and 5 more credits »
Stars: Anne Bellec, Karen Blanguernon, Bernard Fresson
Level Five (1997)
Documentary | Romance | War
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7/10 X  

The French computer programmer Laura inherits the task of making a computer game of the Battle of Okinawa in Japan during World War 2. She searches the Internet for information on the ... See full summary »

Director: Chris Marker
Stars: Catherine Belkhodja, Kenji Tokitsu, Nagisa Ôshima
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  

A married woman lets her lover take naked pictures of her. The photos end up in possession of a man who starts blackmailing the couple.

Director: Yoshishige Yoshida
Stars: Mariko Okada, Shigeru Tsuyuguchi, Tamotsu Hayakawa
Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.2/10 X  

In Paris, the pedantic Alexandre lives with his mate Marie in her apartment, an open relationship. Alexandre, who is idle and chauvinist, spends his days reading, drinking and shagging ... See full summary »

Director: Jean Eustache
Stars: Bernadette Lafont, Jean-Pierre Léaud, Françoise Lebrun
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.6/10 X  
Director: Chris Marker
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  

Chris Marker films a cat reacting to the sound of a piano playing.

Director: Chris Marker
Stars: Guillaume-en-Egypte


Cast overview:
Récitant / Narrator (voice)


Through photos made by the French photographer Denise Bellon, a personnal history of France.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Documentary | Short






Release Date:

28 May 2003 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Remembrance of Things to Come  »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

See  »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

Memories of a Future
14 June 2009 | by (Rio de Janeiro, Brazil) – See all my reviews

Cinema's greatest essayist-artist Chris Marker pays homage to French photographer Denise Bellon (1902-1999) by making an incredibly beautiful, insightful montage of her photos of the 1930s and 1940s to show how the "great illusion" of post-WWI European peace gradually deteriorated into the horrors of WWII. Co-directed by Bellon's filmmaker daughter Yannick, "Le Souvenir d'un Avenir" combines Bellon's breathtaking images, Marker's nec plus ultra insightful/knowledgeable/poetic/ironic commentary (narrated by Pierre Arditi in the French version and by Alexandra Stewart in the English version), and a montage that can only be compared to great music.

Linked to the Surrealist movement and the legendary generation of photographers who worked (as she did) for the Alliance Photo Agency, Bellon showed through her images the signs of the ponderous, eerie calm preceding the big storm. Marker ingeniously reveals the links between apparently "innocent" images and the appalling realities that lay underneath -- the 1930s cult of calisthenics and physical health that indicated the Nazi (and Scandinavian, let's not forget it) theories of racial superiority and the Soviet cult of the strong proletariat; the formal and ideological clash between French and Soviet art at the Paris' World Fair of 1937; her photo of a gypsy bride on the cover of a 1939 Paris Match issue that also (and incredibly) included excerpts of "Mein Kampf" in which Hitler called gypsies and other "low" ethnicities "half-simian".

Like Marker throughout his own career, Bellon showed exceptional sensibility, intuitiveness and intelligence in being at dangerous spots in critical times: one moment she's in the then French colonies of Morocco and Tunisia, photographing the slave-like training of natives as future war troopers (the expendables ones) and the bordellos recruiting Tunisian women for the "repos" of the French military; then, she's at the German maneuvers in Finland that experimented with the heavy weaponry and war strategies soon to ensue; then she's at the Aran Valley in Spain, documenting the little-known, ill-fated uprising by Spanish Republicans against dictator Franco; then, in Paris, documenting the influx of French "ploucs" that initiated the policy of using (and abusing) low-class and immigrant labor force.

But "Le Souvenir d'un Avenir" is not a film-à-thèse: its political, cultural and sociological insights are just as historically sound as they are the product of Marker's superior and very personal sensibility and vision. It's also very moving, as there are many pictures of Bellon's two daughters (filmmaker Yannick and actress Loleh) in various phases of childhood and adolescence, against the changing backdrop of post-war France.

Made when he was at the age of 80(!), Marker's masterful art of transforming historical research into revelatory interpretation using images, words and sounds shows no signs of fatigue, and "Le Souvenir d'un Avenir" is the undebatable proof: it's probably his best since the masterpiece "Sans Soleil".

4 of 4 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Discuss Remembrance of Things to Come (2003) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for: