Jean Renoir

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david hare
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#26 Post by david hare » Thu Feb 23, 2006 6:34 pm

You can bet they won't. But you can always copy down and babelfish the text.

Re some other 30s Renoir. A friend informs me la Marseillaise has been available for a while, now bundled into this box with Cordelier, also previously available. No subs on these. Mme Bovary I think is new. Nana is an Arte title of course.

The missing links are Toni (coming from MoC thank god), La Nuit du Carrefour and Chotard et Cie. La Vie est a Nous is of interest for students of the popular front, but of only marginal interest to Renoir fans.

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Kinsayder
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#27 Post by Kinsayder » Fri Feb 24, 2006 8:02 pm

There is a Japanese edition of Madame Bovary:... though I'm expecting (well, hoping) that Studio Canal will eventually do a separate release of this title, perhaps when they've shifted all the copies of their "limited edition" Renoir boxset.

Also a 2-disc re-issue of the Montparnasse La Regle du jeu... which has a lot more extras than the edition reviewed here by DVD Beaver... It's not clear whether Montparnasse have done any further restoration on it, though they do seem to have added a 5.1 audio track. Oh, and it looks like they've taken off the English subtitles...

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ellipsis7
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#28 Post by ellipsis7 » Wed Mar 08, 2006 1:53 pm

Out 1st March from Editions Montparnasse is R2/PAl DVD of Renoir's final American picture (for RKO) THE WOMAN ON THE BEACH (LA FEMME SUR LA PLAGE)...

Just to report the disc of Renoir silents is absolutely superb... Luminous crisp image of three absolutely wonderful early films... The restorations have done a great job on these films from the 1920's - quality on par with the NANA SE...

The intertitles are all in French, but it doesn't take a genius to translate... Ironically the elements which were restored for LA FILLE D'EAU had original English intertitles, which have now been replaced and translated into French for the restored version!...

Doriane Films have a DVD (no Eng subs) of Renoir et al.'s PCF documentary and drama LA VIE EST A NOUS(1936) ... Source material is damaged but serviceable... Very interesting and powerful piece, not least the sequence of Hitler giving a speech and dubbed with a barking dog...

Can be bought direct or via amazon.fr marketplace...

Telstar
Joined: Mon Apr 10, 2006 12:35 pm

#29 Post by Telstar » Tue Apr 11, 2006 3:21 pm

Ironically the elements which were restored for LA FILLE D'EAU had original English intertitles, which have now been replaced and translated into French for the restored version!...
you just gotta love that sort of exquisite perversity. I speak barely three words of French but I'll probably buy this anyway...

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Tommaso
Joined: Fri May 19, 2006 10:09 am

Dejeuner sur l'herbe (Renoir)

#30 Post by Tommaso » Sun Aug 06, 2006 6:29 am

Does anyone have the French DVD of Jean Renoir's "Dejeuner sur l'herbe"?

It seems that this is the only version available at the moment (Criterion, where are you??), so I'd like to know about the quality and, even more importantly, does it have any subs? The film really intrigues me after having seen the excerpts on that documentary that is on Criterion's "Elena and her men" dvd.

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david hare
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#31 Post by david hare » Sun Aug 06, 2006 6:41 am

The quality of the DVD is very good, if not as lush as the original Agfa prints that used to circulate - but Im old and remember.

As for the movie, you obviously need some French to read it, and IMO it's one of the weakest post-war Renoirs. I dont know - you can obviously broadly follow the narrative which seems overly "constructed" but it's a very minor Renoir for me. And I do NOT think Criterion will pick it up and sub it in the near future, but it's Studio Canal who may well want to do major PAL subtitled releases in HD-DVD in a couple of years.

La Voila!

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Tommaso
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#32 Post by Tommaso » Sun Aug 06, 2006 6:52 am

Okay, many thanks! I will get it, then, although my French really is not very good. I think what intrigues me about it is that he made it on his family's country seat, and I'm just keen to see the landscape that his father painted... the few excerpts on the documentary looked very great visually.

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ellipsis7
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#33 Post by ellipsis7 » Sun Aug 06, 2006 8:25 am

Of course Renoir was using his TV like multicamera technique for this film... There's no subs on the Studio Canal disc , but it's not too hard to follow, and some sequences are simply sublime, the theme prescient, the rational, controlled and technocratic (artificial insemination rather than sex) versus nature, freedom and a roll in the grass... It's not entirely succesful, but is notable for being shot in his father's old estate, Les Collettes, and thus pointing up themes and relationships between the work of father and son... I got my copy free with Telerama issue on the Renoir-Renoir exhibition in Paris - there was fruitful juxtaposition in the Cinametheque of sequences from DEJEUNER SUR L'HERBE and Renoir Sr.'s paintings...

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lubitsch
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#34 Post by lubitsch » Sun Aug 06, 2006 9:40 am

davidhare wrote:As for the movie, you obviously need some French to read it, and IMO it's one of the weakest post-war Renoirs. I dont know - you can obviously broadly follow the narrative which seems overly "constructed" but it's a very minor Renoir for me.
Absolutely agree, from all Renoirs I've seen it's easily the worst. Dumb onesided satire, hectical and successless attempts at being funny, a completely reactionary picture of women. I certainly will never see it again.

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ellipsis7
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#35 Post by ellipsis7 » Sun Aug 06, 2006 10:04 am

...Oh and Studio Canal took over UK distributor Optimum a couple of months back, allowing them to port transfers directly across for Uk/Ireland release, just adding English subtitles and modified menus... So this may eventually make it...

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david hare
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#36 Post by david hare » Sun Aug 06, 2006 7:40 pm

Absolutely agree, from all Renoirs I've seen it's easily the worst. Dumb onesided satire, hectical and successless attempts at being funny, a completely reactionary picture of women. I certainly will never see it again.
The late Renoir that needs to be reviewed and revalued is le Testament du Docteur Cordelier, which was also shot in multi camera TV style. It has an astonishing performance from Barrault (perhaps his best, certainly his most extreme) and the Jeckyll-Hyde material gives Renoir real scope to say something about the good-evil duality of human nature. It's also - thanks to Barrault - quite often funny. It's available as a single disc on Studio Canal, with no subs, not to mention as one of the 12 disc Renoir Coffret.

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Steven H
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#37 Post by Steven H » Sun Aug 06, 2006 8:38 pm

I'm a fan of Picnic on the Grass, and just wanted to pipe up in the midst of the hatefest! Sure it's silly, but it knows it's silly and doesn't care. It has so many things to love. The film is a lark, that throws sexuality, right wing idiocy (the french sort, that is), and a lot of Renoir's early work into the air and let's it fall where it may. The derelect and mystic charisma of Boudu is played up for camp by the shamanish vagabond, set up against the stiff upper lip of modernity and false pretenses of the picnickers. It's a colorized Day in the Country, and a farcical Midsummer Night's Dream (during a windy day, that is) with some of the Rules of the Game comings and goings. The flimsy plot and superficially transparent characters really can't and won't erase my enjoyment of the lakeside swimming/lovemaking scene, or get rid of the memory of the fantastic shot of Etienne and Nenette on the motorscooter.

As unimportant as it may be regarded in the context of Renoir's films (or even just late films), I would love to see this one get out there with a nice print and worthwhile subtitles. I would hope more would get caught up in it's flight of fancy than scoff, however deserved it might be. As for le Testament du Docteur Cordelier, I'll thank Davidhare for sending me off to watch it again as soon as possible.

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david hare
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#38 Post by david hare » Sun Aug 06, 2006 9:24 pm

Steven - I should also thank you for prompting me to look at Dejeuner again. One of my problems with the disc, reasonable as it is, is like French Can Can this USED to look stunning in color (think of the gorgeous Lang Indian Picture transfers as a good example of first print Agfa.) Im afraid the sheer sensual pleasure of the image is critical to viewing - at least for an old hedonist like me. There are a string of late 50s thru 60s European color movies whose current transfers are just a pale reflection of first release prints - Dejeuner, A Double Tour (which was eye-popping), Belle de Jour, Plein Soleil, to name a few.

BTW I don't have the Studio Canal Testament, but given they are the best in the biz for B&W transfers it should be great.

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Steven H
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#39 Post by Steven H » Sun Aug 06, 2006 11:42 pm

davidhare wrote:BTW I don't have the Studio Canal Testament, but given they are the best in the biz for B&W transfers it should be great.
I would love to see this restored, and I'm sure it would be especially worth reappraisal if given quality treatment. I haven't seen the Studio Canal either, but Peerpee has spoken highly of it. I'm planning a little order from France more sooner than later, and it would make sense to pick it up (as I don't see it being approached anytime soon in the english speaking world.)

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ellipsis7
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#40 Post by ellipsis7 » Mon Aug 07, 2006 5:18 am

Nice piece, Steven... I think Renoir post-war moved from the foibles and failures of the male ego and imagination (leading to wars etc. - see THE WOMAN ON THE BEACH) to a proto feminist position, which he identified in India (THE RIVER) and also harking back to his father's household and work, dominated by a female presence and sensibility in life and in paintings (LE CAROSSE D'OR, FRENCH CAN CAN, LE DEJEUNER SUR L'HERBE etc.)... While this is not a sophisticated, or particularly politically informed or contemporarily liberated attitude, its very simplicity (some could say naivity) represents in some way the essence of purity and pacifism, a distillation of his outlook at the end of his career...


Image

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Steven H
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#41 Post by Steven H » Wed Mar 07, 2007 8:17 pm

The Jean Renoir Collection April 24th.

Image

DISC 1 - Jean Renoir 2 Early Movies: LA FILLE DE L'EAU, NANA

DISC 2 - Jean Renoir Political period: LA MARSEILLAISE, + 2 short films: SUR UN AIR DE CHARLESTON, LA PETITE MARCHANDE D'ALLUMETTES

DISC 3 - 2 Later Movies: LE TESTAMENT DU DOCTEUR CORDELIER, LE CAPORAL EPINGLE

This certainly goes a long way towards completing Renoir's filmography on DVD (of what's available, at least.) If I hadn't seen this with my own eyes, I might have a hard time believing it.

edit: just found the appropriate thread. still, I suppose something should be noted in this one as well, what a great set!

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Rsdio
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#42 Post by Rsdio » Thu Mar 08, 2007 6:34 am

There's also a 7 disc R2 Optimum set due for June, containing:

La Grande Illusion
Dejeuner Sur Herbe
La Caporal Epingle
La Marseillaise
Elena et Les Hommes
Le Testament Du Docteur Cordelier
La Bete Humaine

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ellipsis7
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#43 Post by ellipsis7 » Thu Mar 08, 2007 9:26 am

These should be good, being presumably direct port ins of the French Studio Canal transfers...

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sevenarts
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#44 Post by sevenarts » Thu Mar 08, 2007 9:40 am

ellipsis7 wrote:These should be good, being presumably direct port ins of the French Studio Canal transfers...
Well, yes, they will be ports of those. The only hope is that they're not improper PAL-NTSC transfers. This presumably wasn't really an issue with their Hitchcock box, so this one will really be the test of how good a job they'll be doing with the Canal catalog they acquired.

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ellipsis7
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#45 Post by ellipsis7 » Thu Mar 08, 2007 9:56 am

Yes, I'm thinking that the Optimum set, although twice as expensive, may actually look better in the end than the Lionsgate set, given that its provenance is more direct... Also it has DEJEUNER SUR L'HERBE...

Greathinker

#46 Post by Greathinker » Sat Jun 23, 2007 11:18 am

Is there any reason why Woman on the Beach isn't widely available? Does warner own it, is there any talk about an upcoming release? Having not seen it I'm reluctant to import.

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ellipsis7
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#47 Post by ellipsis7 » Sat Jun 23, 2007 11:25 am

it's an RKO picture - do Warners own their catalogue now?... I seem to remember something... Janet Bergstrom's fascinating paper ‘Oneiric Cinema: The Woman on the Beach'. Film History, 11(1), 1999, charts Renoir's work on the project, including his rewrites of the script reducing the importance of plot and opening out a closed narrative...

The R2 French Editions Montparnasse disc is far from perfect (looks like it's from a video source) but is essential for Renoir completists!...

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tryavna
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#48 Post by tryavna » Sat Jun 23, 2007 11:37 am

ellipsis7 wrote:it's an RKO picture - do Warners own their catalogue now?
Yes, Warners now owns both of Renoir's RKO pictures (Woman on the Beach and This Land Is Mine). Both films appear on TCM every so often in decent prints. Considering the cast in each film, I imagine it's only a matter of time before Warners releases them in R1.

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ellipsis7
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#49 Post by ellipsis7 » Sat Jun 23, 2007 12:39 pm

tryavna wrote:
ellipsis7 wrote:it's an RKO picture - do Warners own their catalogue now?
Yes, Warners now owns both of Renoir's RKO pictures (Woman on the Beach and This Land Is Mine). Both films appear on TCM every so often in decent prints. Considering the cast in each film, I imagine it's only a matter of time before Warners releases them in R1.
This Land is Mine is also released by Ed Montparnasse in France in their RKO series, while some people called Orbit Media release it on R2 UK DVD on July 2nd...

Dudley Nichols' excellent script is published in Ungar's RKO Classic Screenplays series, and can be picked through the usual used book channels...

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FilmFanSea
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#50 Post by FilmFanSea » Sat Jun 23, 2007 9:46 pm

I keep waiting for a DVD of the rarely screened La Nuit du carrefour (Night at the Crossroads/1932), which has been praised highly by both Godard and Jonathan Rosenbaum. I don't think it's been released in any region.

Likewise, La Chienne is not available on DVD with English subs (it was released in a French boxset by Studio Canal in 2003).

Finally, I await a stand alone release of Le Crime de Monsieur Lange in Region 1. It is included in the Warner UK boxset, but I don't need extra copies of La Grande illusion (from an incomplete print) and La Bête humaine.

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