Sunday, April 17, 2011

La jetée

Netflix sez...
1961 NR 28 minutes
In this groundbreaking sci-fi tale told through still photos, a human guinea pig travels back in time from post-apocalyptic Paris to the peaceful days of his childhood, where he falls for a familiar woman and fights to remain in the past. The inspiration for the film 12 Monkeys, this engrossing masterpiece from French filmmaker Chris Marker stars Jean Négroni's voice, Davos Hanich, Hélène Chatelain and Jacques Ledoux.

The 73rd Virgin sez...
Although others have eloquently described its connection to "Vertigo", for me it recalls "The Passion of Joan of Arc."  There is something about the cumulative effect of all those frozen faces, the beautiful somber music, even the deadpan English voiceover, that is pretty astounding.

I can't help the fact that I already know the story, which doesn't seem particularly original, even for its time. That said, if the purpose of any entertainment film is to take you to someplace you have never been and to experience something you have never experienced, this does it. I might enjoy it slightly more in French, but the voiceover seemed about right for the story. I'm not trying to be a smart aleck when I say that anyone who is getting ready to put together a film and photo retrospective of their summer visit to Peoria should watch this and see how to make it not suck. Its worth every minute for reasons that are somewhat beyond my ability to describe. 4 stars out of 5.

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