6.3/10
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2 user 1 critic

Pigeons in the Square (1982)

Les pigeons du square (original title)
An enthusiastic grandfather sits with children in a Parisian park talking about pigeons. First. their physical appearance - eye, wings and tail, and color - and their varieties. Then, he ... See full summary »

Director:

Jean Painlevé

Writer:

Olivér Tóth
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Storyline

An enthusiastic grandfather sits with children in a Parisian park talking about pigeons. First. their physical appearance - eye, wings and tail, and color - and their varieties. Then, he encourages the children to imitate their walk. He points out courtship and mating rituals, then provides an illustrated discussion of how they eat. This section is punctuated by a flock of pigeons fighting over a small, hard ball each wants to eat; the narrator's describes it as if it were a soccer match. He concludes with a discussion of pigeons taking off, landing, and flying; he uses slow motion and stop-time photography to show his audience. Written by <jhailey@hotmail.com>

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Genres:

Short

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Sighting the Elusive Painlevé
13 September 2018 | by bobliptonSee all my reviews

In more the than two dozen documentary shorts I have seen, Jean Painlevé is an elusive creature. We can often hear his voice speaking about some sea creature, cracking dark jokes and educating the audience about his interests. In this movie, however, he can be spotted a couple of times in a park in Paris, surrounded by youngsters like attendants, quizzing them on the subject of this movie.

It's about pigeons, their habits, their courtship rituals, their diseases and the 20-franc fine for feeding them. Like most of his movies, however, it is about more than the subject at hand; the preamble makes it clear that this movie is meant to transmit the techniques, habits and excitement of observing creatures. Science may be about observation and getting the details right, but the impulse to do so must arise from somewhere, and the subtext of this film, not particularly hidden, is that anyone can do it.

How often have we heard, particularly when we are young, that we would not understand or we're too young? You can do it! It's an important message and perhaps, after more than half a century of making these movies, perhaps his most important.


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Details

Country:

France

Language:

French

Release Date:

21 August 1991 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Pigeons in the Square See more »

Filming Locations:

Paris, France

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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