Robert Bresson

Discussion and info on people in film, ranging from directors to actors to cinematographers to writers.

Moderator: DarkImbecile

Message
Author
User avatar
domino harvey
Dot Com Dom
Joined: Wed Jan 11, 2006 2:42 pm

Re: Robert Bresson

#76 Post by domino harvey » Mon Nov 07, 2016 7:50 pm

Here are the top results by number of ballots from that 1952 Cahiers issue (100 ballots sent out, of which 55 of the directors responded)
32 ---- Battleship Potemkin (Sergei Eisenstein 1925)
25 ---- The Gold Rush (Charles Chaplin 1925)
20 ---- Bicycle Thieves (Vittorio De Sica 1948)
15 ---- City Lights (Charles Chaplin 1931)
15 ---- The Grand Illusion (Jean Renoir 1937)
15 ---- Le Million (René Clair 1931)
11 ---- Greed (Eric von Stroheim 1924)
10 ---- Hallelujah (King Vidor 1929)
9 ---- Brief Encounter (David Lean 1945)
9 ---- The Threepenny Opera (G W Pabst 1931)
9 ---- Man of Aran (Robert Flaherty 1934)
8 ---- The Passion of Joan of Arc (Carl Theodor Dreyer 1928)
7 ---- Les Enfants du paradis (Marcel Carné 1945)
7 ---- Foolish Wives (Erich von Stroheim 1922)
6 ---- L'Age d'or (Luis Bunuel 1930)
6 ---- The Birth of a Nation (D W Griffith 1915)
6 ---- Broken Blossoms (D W Griffith 1919)
6 ---- Le Diable au corps (Claude Autant-Lara 1947)
5 ---- Ninotchka (Ernst Lubitsch 1939)
5 ---- Nanook of the North (Robert Flaherty 1922)
5 ---- Carnival in Flanders (Jacques Feyder 1935)
5 ---- Citizen Kane (Orson Welles 1941)
5 ---- The Best Years of Our Lives (Willilam Wyler 1946)

User avatar
zedz
Joined: Sun Nov 07, 2004 7:24 pm

Re: Robert Bresson

#77 Post by zedz » Mon Nov 07, 2016 8:04 pm

domino harvey wrote:Here are the top results by number of ballots from that 1952 Cahiers issue (100 ballots sent out, of which 55 of the directors responded)
32 ---- Battleship Potemkin (Sergei Eisenstein 1925)
25 ---- The Gold Rush (Charles Chaplin 1925)
20 ---- Bicycle Thieves (Vittorio De Sica 1948)
15 ---- City Lights (Charles Chaplin 1931)
15 ---- The Grand Illusion (Jean Renoir 1937)
15 ---- Le Million (René Clair 1931)
11 ---- Greed (Eric von Stroheim 1924)
10 ---- Hallelujah (King Vidor 1929)
9 ---- Brief Encounter (David Lean 1945)
9 ---- The Threepenny Opera (G W Pabst 1931)
9 ---- Man of Aran (Robert Flaherty 1934)
8 ---- The Passion of Joan of Arc (Carl Theodor Dreyer 1928)
7 ---- Les Enfants du paradis (Marcel Carné 1945)
7 ---- Foolish Wives (Erich von Stroheim 1922)
6 ---- L'Age d'or (Luis Bunuel 1930)
6 ---- The Birth of a Nation (D W Griffith 1915)
6 ---- Broken Blossoms (D W Griffith 1919)
6 ---- Le Diable au corps (Claude Autant-Lara 1947)
5 ---- Ninotchka (Ernst Lubitsch 1939)
5 ---- Nanook of the North (Robert Flaherty 1922)
5 ---- Carnival in Flanders (Jacques Feyder 1935)
5 ---- Citizen Kane (Orson Welles 1941)
5 ---- The Best Years of Our Lives (Willilam Wyler 1946)
Interesting that Brief Encounter did so well in a French poll. It also made the first (1952) Sight & Sound poll.

User avatar
domino harvey
Dot Com Dom
Joined: Wed Jan 11, 2006 2:42 pm

Re: Robert Bresson

#78 Post by domino harvey » Mon Nov 07, 2016 8:07 pm

It was of directors across the Americas and Europe, not just France. I actually think this tidbit about the list is hilarious:
Cecil B. De Mille
1.....Cabiria (Giovanni Pastrone 1914)
2.....the Birth of a Nation (D W Griffith 1915)
3.....Ben Hur (Fred Niblo 1925)
4.....the 10 Commandments (Cecil B. De Mille 1923)
5.....the King of Kings (Cecil B. De Mille 1927)
6.....the Big Parade (King Vidor 1925)
7.....the Sign of the Cross (Cecil B. De Mille 1932)
8.....Gone with the Wind (Victor Fleming 1939)
9.....Going My Way (Leo McCarey 1944)
10...Samson and Delilah (Cecil B. De Mille 1949)

Cahiers pointed out that De Mille had listed four of his own films -- the 10 Commnandments, King of Kings, the Sign of the Cross, and Samson and Delilah -- and identified six others who had cited films of their own:

Claude Autant-Lara -- Le Diable au corps
Luis Bunuel -- L'Age d'or
Edward Dmytryk -- Gives Us This Day (Christ in Concrete)
William Dieterle -- the Life of Emile Zola
Marcel L'Herbier -- El Dorado
King Vidor -- the Big Parade
Henry Hathaway -- the Lives of Bengal Lancers

User avatar
knives
Joined: Sat Sep 06, 2008 6:49 pm

Re: Robert Bresson

#79 Post by knives » Mon Nov 07, 2016 8:14 pm

Of all the movies of his own Hathaway could have chosen why that I wonder?

User avatar
MichaelB
Joined: Fri Aug 11, 2006 6:20 pm
Location: Worthing
Contact:

Re: Robert Bresson

#80 Post by MichaelB » Tue Nov 08, 2016 4:45 am

zedz wrote:
ando wrote:LOL That's great. Not even Kane, thank heavens.
I think that's less about Bresson bucking any trends and much more about 1952 being pre-Kane, as the film didn't really emerge as canonical until later in the decade. It didn't figure on Sight & Sound's inaugural best films poll in 1952, for instance
Not the top ten, but it did come in at number eleven.

Although it's certainly true that it took time to achieve its über-canonical status.

User avatar
Cremildo
Joined: Sun Jan 22, 2012 8:19 pm
Location: Brazil
Contact:

Re: Robert Bresson

#81 Post by Cremildo » Tue Nov 08, 2016 9:13 am

knives wrote:Of all the movies of his own Hathaway could have chosen why that I wonder?
Perhaps he felt grateful for it because he received his only Best Director Oscar nomination for it.

User avatar
TMDaines
Joined: Wed Nov 11, 2009 1:01 pm
Location: Stretford, Manchester

Re: Robert Bresson

#82 Post by TMDaines » Thu Nov 10, 2016 8:36 pm

domino harvey wrote:Here are the top results by number of ballots from that 1952 Cahiers issue (100 ballots sent out, of which 55 of the directors responded)
32 ---- Battleship Potemkin (Sergei Eisenstein 1925)
25 ---- The Gold Rush (Charles Chaplin 1925)
20 ---- Bicycle Thieves (Vittorio De Sica 1948)
15 ---- City Lights (Charles Chaplin 1931)
15 ---- The Grand Illusion (Jean Renoir 1937)
15 ---- Le Million (René Clair 1931)
11 ---- Greed (Eric von Stroheim 1924)
10 ---- Hallelujah (King Vidor 1929)
9 ---- Brief Encounter (David Lean 1945)
9 ---- The Threepenny Opera (G W Pabst 1931)
9 ---- Man of Aran (Robert Flaherty 1934)
8 ---- The Passion of Joan of Arc (Carl Theodor Dreyer 1928)
7 ---- Les Enfants du paradis (Marcel Carné 1945)
7 ---- Foolish Wives (Erich von Stroheim 1922)
6 ---- L'Age d'or (Luis Bunuel 1930)
6 ---- The Birth of a Nation (D W Griffith 1915)
6 ---- Broken Blossoms (D W Griffith 1919)
6 ---- Le Diable au corps (Claude Autant-Lara 1947)
5 ---- Ninotchka (Ernst Lubitsch 1939)
5 ---- Nanook of the North (Robert Flaherty 1922)
5 ---- Carnival in Flanders (Jacques Feyder 1935)
5 ---- Citizen Kane (Orson Welles 1941)
5 ---- The Best Years of Our Lives (Willilam Wyler 1946)
Would votes for Greed here be based on the sub 3 hour cut?

User avatar
Roger Ryan
Joined: Wed Apr 28, 2010 12:04 pm
Location: A Midland town spread and darkened into a city

Re: Robert Bresson

#83 Post by Roger Ryan » Fri Nov 11, 2016 10:42 am

TMDaines wrote:Would votes for Greed here be based on the sub 3 hour cut?
Well, that's the only cut that existed between 1924 and the attempted reconstruction of the long version in 1999, so I'd say "yes". According to Wikipedia, only twelve people saw the full-length version and that was prior to the film's initial release.

User avatar
colinr0380
Joined: Mon Nov 08, 2004 4:30 pm
Location: Chapel-en-le-Frith, Derbyshire, UK

Re: Robert Bresson

#84 Post by colinr0380 » Fri Nov 11, 2016 8:08 pm

Following on from this strong Erich von Stroheim polling I'm curious as to whether there was any particular reason that The Wedding March did not feature in any of these lists? Was it seen as not up to the standards of Foolish Wives or Greed, or were there distribution issues? Or wasit because the second half of that film was compromised? Or was it something as simple as it being a very early talkie, and von Stroheim's first sound film?

User avatar
domino harvey
Dot Com Dom
Joined: Wed Jan 11, 2006 2:42 pm

Re: Robert Bresson

#85 Post by domino harvey » Fri Nov 11, 2016 9:11 pm

It did make Cahiers' later 12 Best Films of All Time list in 1957:
Sunrise (F W Murnau)
the Rules of the Game (Jean Renoir)
Journey to Italy (Roberto Rossellini)
Ivan the Terrible (Sergei Eisenstein)
the Birth of a Nation (D W Griffith)
Mr Arkadin (Orson Welles)
Ordet (Carl Theodor Dreyer)
Ugetsu (Kenji Mizoguchi)
L’Atalante (Jean Vigo)
the Wedding March (Erich Von Stroheim)
Under Capricorn (Alfred Hitchcock)
Monsieur Verdoux (Charles Chaplin)
The list was compiled rather strangely, though. They first polled seventeen Cahiers critics to create a list of greatest auteurs, then picked a film to represent each. The next twelve auteurs in order were Max Ophuls, Fritz Lang, Howard Hawks / Buster Keaton (tie), Ingmar Bergman, Nicholas Ray, Norman McLaren (!) / Robert Flaherty (tie), Luis Bunuel / René Clair (tie), Luchino Visconti / Alexander Dovchenko (tie)

User avatar
ando
Bringing Out El Duende
Joined: Mon Dec 06, 2004 6:53 pm
Location: New York City

Re: Robert Bresson

#86 Post by ando » Sat Nov 12, 2016 8:52 am

New editions/translations of Notes of a Cinematographer and Bresson on Bresson are out on Tuesday (Nov. 15). I remember enjoying the former far more so than the latter, which, though full of pithy insights (selected by Bresson's widow), seemed deliberately random. What's really got me exited are the release of e-reader versions.

User avatar
Big Ben
Joined: Mon Feb 08, 2016 12:54 pm
Location: Great Falls, Montana

Re: Robert Bresson

#87 Post by Big Ben » Sat Nov 12, 2016 1:55 pm

I actually ordered said new version of Notes of a Cinematographer months ago. I'll be a first time reader and I'm looking forward to it! Disappointed to hear that Bresson on Bresson isn't any good though.

User avatar
ando
Bringing Out El Duende
Joined: Mon Dec 06, 2004 6:53 pm
Location: New York City

Re: Robert Bresson

#88 Post by ando » Sat Nov 12, 2016 7:11 pm

Forgive me, early morning grog had me a little loopy; Bresson on Bresson is the superb collection of interviews over the span of a decade or two and Notes is what I meant to dub a pithy but random collection. I forget which famous director said he is never without a copy of it on any set but I'd imagine that it would certainly appeal more to those in the business of making films than the casual cineaste. And, frankly, few directors approach their craft with the level of rigor as Bresson delineates therein.

User avatar
ando
Bringing Out El Duende
Joined: Mon Dec 06, 2004 6:53 pm
Location: New York City

Re: Robert Bresson

#89 Post by ando » Fri Nov 18, 2016 12:01 am

The Road To Bresson (1984, Leo De Boer, Jurriën Rood) Streamer. New to me. But it's included with the supplements to the Criterion edition of A Man Escaped.

User avatar
whaleallright
Joined: Sun Sep 25, 2005 12:56 am

Re: Robert Bresson

#90 Post by whaleallright » Mon Feb 13, 2017 3:10 am

domino harvey wrote:Bresson's list comes from Cahiers' "Best Films of Our Lives" feature in 1952 where they polled directors for their Top 10s.
This may seem like nitpicking, but the article you're referencing—"The Best Films of Our Life" from issue 12 (May 1952; and yes, the original title is in the slightly mangled English)—is Cahiers' summary of the poll of filmmakers conducted by the Festival Mondial du film et des Beaux-Arts in Belgium. That's the one I mistakenly referred to above as having being conducted by the "Cinémathèque Royale de Belgique." As far as I can tell, Cahiers didn't independently conduct their own poll of filmmakers in that era.

User avatar
TMDaines
Joined: Wed Nov 11, 2009 1:01 pm
Location: Stretford, Manchester

Re: Robert Bresson

#91 Post by TMDaines » Thu Feb 16, 2017 9:22 pm

I swear I'm going crazy. I could have sworn someone posted here the other day requesting the individual ballots from the 1952 Belgian poll to see Kautner's ballot amongst others. Did someone delete a post?

After a fruitless search online, I managed to get them from Bill Georgaris at TSPDT. I'll post them tomorrow after neatening them up.
Last edited by TMDaines on Thu Feb 16, 2017 9:33 pm, edited 1 time in total.

User avatar
knives
Joined: Sat Sep 06, 2008 6:49 pm

Re: Robert Bresson

#92 Post by knives » Thu Feb 16, 2017 9:24 pm

Yes, in the Godard thread if memory serves.

User avatar
TMDaines
Joined: Wed Nov 11, 2009 1:01 pm
Location: Stretford, Manchester

Re: Robert Bresson

#93 Post by TMDaines » Thu Feb 16, 2017 9:52 pm


User avatar
ando
Bringing Out El Duende
Joined: Mon Dec 06, 2004 6:53 pm
Location: New York City

Re: Robert Bresson

#94 Post by ando » Fri Mar 03, 2017 7:27 pm

Image
The Invention of Robert Bresson: The Auteur and His Market, Colin Burnett (2017)

The cover is funny - Bresson a la Stanley Kowalski. It looks like a good one, at any rate, though I've only skimmed it. Anyone here read it yet?
Burnett wrote:It is often thought that [Bresson] forged his distinctive style in isolation - that it was somehow autopoietic or self-produced - Bresson's unique voice as an artist owes much to the direct ties he fostered early with several prominent artists in the interwar Parisian art world.
Of this I know little to nothing so it might be a worthwhile purchase for art history sake alone.

User avatar
bunuelian
Joined: Wed Nov 03, 2004 11:49 am
Location: San Diego

Re: Robert Bresson

#95 Post by bunuelian » Thu Sep 07, 2017 5:01 pm

Regarding the ending of Proces de Jeanne d'Arc, am I completely out of bounds
SpoilerShow
reading her disappearance not as a miracle but rather as an extension of the British officer's command that no trace of her be left? It seems to me that her body's disappearance, as the official record supposedly describes, was simply an official explanation of events to ensure that no one could create politically charged relics from Jeanne's ribs. We're shown several instances where the official record (that is, the source of the film) is subject to manipulation by the officials running the trial, which leaves the reliability of the later record very much in doubt as well. If this is indeed the correct reading, Bresson rejects the "miracle" as an official lie, but leaves the audience to figure that out (and meanwhile, curiously, he's letting those who want to see the miracle still see it).
I came to Jeanne after close, repeat viewings of Le diable probablement (such a marvelous, strange film) and L'argent so my take may be tainted by Bresson's late "pessimism," not to mention my own atheist perspective.

User avatar
knives
Joined: Sat Sep 06, 2008 6:49 pm

Re: Robert Bresson

#96 Post by knives » Thu Sep 07, 2017 5:14 pm

I definitely take that as a good reading. My biases showing as well I never interrupted the ending as indicating anything miraculous. Bresson seems too grounded (wrong word right idea) in all of his pictures to do something as fantastical as Dreyer to go with the obvious example. There's no precedent in his work for something narratively unreal to occur (I'm making a differentiation with filmic miracles like the pickpocketing in that movie).

User avatar
bunuelian
Joined: Wed Nov 03, 2004 11:49 am
Location: San Diego

Re: Robert Bresson

#97 Post by bunuelian » Thu Sep 07, 2017 6:43 pm

"Grounded" is close. I think it's not entirely irresponsible to say that Bresson used the artifice of cinema to get as close to reality as possible. This certainly reached an extreme in the later films, with Diable being downright jarring in its unreality. But I think it's safe to find it in Jeanne as well.

User avatar
Nicola Matteo
Joined: Mon Nov 20, 2017 6:57 am

Re: Robert Bresson

#98 Post by Nicola Matteo » Mon Nov 20, 2017 8:09 am

Trees wrote:Is the Une femme douce restoration streaming anywhere? What is the best way to see it in HD right now?
There is an announcement for Bresson's Une femme douce Blu-ray France to be released Feb 01, 2018.

A bit confusing: There is also an announcement for Serguei Loznitsa's Une femme douce (AKA Кроткая) Blu-ray to be released Jan. 02, 2018, where they use the poster of Bresson's film.

User avatar
criterionsnob
Joined: Wed Nov 03, 2004 1:23 am
Location: Canada

Re: Robert Bresson

#99 Post by criterionsnob » Sun Jun 10, 2018 4:24 pm

I had seen this mentioned in another thread here, that Four Nights of a Dreamer is up on Filmbox Live. I signed up for a free trial just to watch it. The master is very old, but it's watchable up until about 40 minutes in, when it goes completely bonkers. Lots of digital noise, freezing, and jumping back and forth between shots. I'm glad to have finally seen the film, but the master they have is pretty atrocious.

User avatar
ando
Bringing Out El Duende
Joined: Mon Dec 06, 2004 6:53 pm
Location: New York City

Re: Robert Bresson

#100 Post by ando » Sun Jun 10, 2018 7:58 pm

There are a couple of decent versions up on YT. And Filmstruck used to have it - worth the 14 day free trial to see any Bresson, imo. May take my own advise on this one. Ha

Post Reply