Friday, October 31, 2008

Jules et Jim

Jules et Jim (François Truffaut, 1962)

François Truffaut with Jean-Luc Godard and Éric Rohmer were radical film critics who turned to filmmaking in the 1960s under the given title the French New Wave. They were the critics responsible for the auteur theory that proposes it is the filmmaker who is responsible for the creative process of the film and that there is a personal projection through the mise-en-scene. François Truffauts 1962 masterpiece is one of the most romantic and stylistically evocative film of the entire movement. The story takes place in France, Germany and Austria before, during and after the first world war. The two friends who the film is titled after Jules (Oskar Werner) and Jim (Henri Serre) are two writers who are interested in the world of the arts, actively participate in a bohemian lifestyle and fall in love with the same beautiful women Catherine (Jeanne Moreau). All the while transporting the viewer to an ancient ideological lifestyle visiting cool french bars Parisian landmarks and gorgeous summer homes. The themes involve alternatives to the traditional couple relationship and on love, life and tragedy that were beautifully summed up when Catherine sings Le Tourbillon over the enchanting musical score by Georges Delerue. This was Jeanne Moreau first encounter with François Truffaut and her role of Catherine is staple of French Cinema. Catherine is a disenchanted women whose strife's never end well and who has perpetual feelings of ennui. To make the beautiful black and white cinematography by Raoul Coutard even more enjoyable, Truffaut beautifully alternates between grave and joyous subject matter that entices a wonderful feeling that is both funny and melancholic. In French with subtitles. 105 min.-David Davidson

Jules et Jim plays at the ByTowne Cinema Nov. 17 at 8:55 p.m. and Nov. 28 at 4:30 p.m. Tickets are $10, $6 for members.

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