Sergio Leone Web Board

Other/Miscellaneous => Off-Topic Discussion => Topic started by: drinkanddestroy on October 14, 2014, 07:55:43 AM



Title: Jean-Pierre Melville
Post by: drinkanddestroy on October 14, 2014, 07:55:43 AM
This guy deserves a thread ... especially since not too many of his films have their own thread.

I'll try as best as possible to remember the ratings I gave his movies, some of which I saw a while ago

Un Flic/A Cop 7/10
Deux hommes dans Manhattan/Two Men in Manhattan 8/10
Le Doulos/The Finger Man 8/10
Bob Le Flambeur/The Gambler 8.5/10
Le deuxième souffle/Second Breath 8.5/10
L'armée des ombres/Army of Shadows 8.5/10
Le Samourai 9/10
Le Cercle Rouge/The Red Circle 9/10


Title: Re: Jean-Pierre Melville
Post by: titoli on October 15, 2014, 01:21:37 PM
So what are you waiting for before watching Le deuxième souffle?


Title: Re: Jean-Pierre Melville
Post by: drinkanddestroy on October 15, 2014, 03:31:08 PM
So what are you waiting for before watching Le deuxième souffle?

huh? read my list again, that movie is on there


Title: Re: Jean-Pierre Melville
Post by: titoli on October 16, 2014, 03:03:59 AM
huh? read my list again, that movie is on there

you're right, must have been sleeping. sorry.4


Title: Re: Jean-Pierre Melville
Post by: drinkanddestroy on November 02, 2014, 07:15:13 PM
TCM will be showing two Melville movies in a few hours from now
http://www.tcm.com/schedule/index.html?tz=est&sdate=2014-11-02

Monday, Nov. 3, 2014

2:00 AM EST Le Silence de la Mer / The Silence of the Sea (1949)
3:30 AM Les Enfants Terribles / The Strange Ones (1952)

I haven't seen either of these yet; my DVR is set  :)


Title: Re: Jean-Pierre Melville
Post by: Groggy on November 02, 2014, 07:20:22 PM
So far I only recall seeing Le Samourai (9/10), The Red Circle and Army of Shadows (both 8/10). I'd been meaning to watch more of his work but never got around to it.


Title: Re: Jean-Pierre Melville
Post by: drinkanddestroy on November 02, 2014, 07:27:44 PM
So far I only recall seeing Le Samourai (9/10), The Red Circle and Army of Shadows (both 8/10). I'd been meaning to watch more of his work but never got around to it.

It's my intent to watch every Melville movie I can ... I've seen 8 of his movies and only one lower than 8/10 that's pretty damn good  O0


Title: Re: Jean-Pierre Melville
Post by: dave jenkins on June 16, 2016, 11:36:59 AM
The one Melville I've been waiting to see (because it is not generally available with Eng. subs) is now available. But for how long? https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sz9qnFnM5tI


Title: Re: Jean-Pierre Melville
Post by: stanton on June 16, 2016, 12:19:10 PM
The one Melville I've been waiting to see (because it is not generally available with Eng. subs) is now available. But for how long? https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sz9qnFnM5tI

Why don't you download it from the tube?


Title: Re: Jean-Pierre Melville
Post by: drinkanddestroy on October 15, 2016, 09:22:40 PM
I got the LE CERCLE ROUGE Criterion DVD from Amazon. This disc usually costs a zillion bucks, but I finally found a guy on Amazon selling a used copy for $30 plus shipping  :) One of the all-time great heist movies


Title: Re: Jean-Pierre Melville
Post by: dave jenkins on October 16, 2016, 11:58:05 AM
I got the LE CERCLE ROUGE Criterion DVD from Amazon. This disc usually costs a zillion bucks, but I finally found a guy on Amazon selling a used copy for $30 plus shipping  :) One of the all-time great hesit movies
Why didn't you get the blu??? ::)


Title: Re: Jean-Pierre Melville
Post by: drinkanddestroy on October 16, 2016, 02:32:30 PM
Why didn't you get the blu??? ::)

Maybe I should have; I actually did not really pay attention. But looking at Amazon now, I see that the cheapest used BRD is more than $60. So I am happy with my DVD.  :)


Title: Re: Jean-Pierre Melville
Post by: dave jenkins on October 16, 2016, 04:52:35 PM
Except that I must have the DVD kicking around my place; I haven't really paid attention to it since I got my BD copy. But if I'd known you wanted the DVD, I could have given you mine! :(


Title: Re: Jean-Pierre Melville
Post by: drinkanddestroy on October 18, 2016, 05:59:19 PM
Except that I must have the DVD kicking around my place; I haven't really paid attention to it since I got my BD copy. But if I'd known you wanted the DVD, I could have given you mine! :(

A shame; I appreciate it.

Why not try selling your DVD on Amazon or eBay? This title is fetching high prices; both the Criterion DVD and BRD are out of print. You have lots of discs, you can try selling them and make back some money to fuel your movie habit  ;) You can make more than 30 dollars for the DVD or more than 60 dollars for the BRD.


Title: Re: Jean-Pierre Melville
Post by: drinkanddestroy on October 18, 2016, 09:55:38 PM
LE CERCLE ROUGE screencap comparisons from Beaver here http://www.dvdbeaver.com/film/dvdcompare2/cerclerouge/cerclerouge3.html


Title: Re: Jean-Pierre Melville
Post by: dave jenkins on April 26, 2017, 01:40:33 PM
http://filmforum.org/series/melville-series

Not much tempts me here, because I've got them all on disc. EXCEPT When You Read This Letter, which I've never heard of until now. I just might have to go to that one . . .


Title: Re: Jean-Pierre Melville
Post by: drinkanddestroy on April 26, 2017, 06:08:28 PM
http://filmforum.org/series/melville-series

Not much tempts me here, because I've got them all on disc. EXCEPT When You Read This Letter, which I've never heard of until now. I just might have to go to that one . . .

I cannot go to the Saturday showing, but I can probably go Tuesday May 9 at 7:25 pm



Title: Re: Jean-Pierre Melville
Post by: dave jenkins on April 27, 2017, 05:31:02 AM
http://www.newyorker.com/magazine/2017/05/01/jean-pierre-melvilles-cinema-of-resistance


Title: Re: Jean-Pierre Melville
Post by: drinkanddestroy on April 27, 2017, 08:48:29 AM
http://www.newyorker.com/magazine/2017/05/01/jean-pierre-melvilles-cinema-of-resistance

Thanks! Great piece  O0


Title: Re: Jean-Pierre Melville
Post by: dave jenkins on April 27, 2017, 09:41:59 AM
I can probably go Tuesday May 9 at 7:25 pm
Are you sure? You can make it to FF by 7:15?


Title: Re: Jean-Pierre Melville
Post by: drinkanddestroy on May 09, 2017, 07:42:29 PM
DJ wrote a bit about an obscure Melville film in RTLMYS THREAD
http://www.fistful-of-leone.com/forums/index.php?topic=7645.msg189491#msg189491

 I will copy and reply here:


Quote from: dave jenkins on Sunday:May 06, 2017, 10:38:42 PM
Jean-Pierre Melville 100, Film Forum
I can't make it Tuesday (sorry, Drink), so I went down today. The print was imported from France and didn't have regular subtitles; they made their own and had a specialist project them on to image as the film played. The print was a bit beat up but looked pretty good. It was a real b & w picture; not one of those b.s. high-contrast "restorations" we're always seeing now. A guy intro'd the film and asked if anybody knew if the film had ever been screened in NY before. The consensus was this was the first time. Tuesday may be the last time anyone here gets a chance to see it projected. Who knows when a home video version will come (apparently, even in France it's not available on DVD)? Drink, you should get down to FF and see this on Tuesday if you can. Leave work early, quit your job, cut your boss's throat--do whatever you have to do. Otherwise, all that praise you give Melville is just a pose.

When You Read This Letter (1953) – 8/10. A woman’s picture, shot by the great Henri Alekan using many authentic exteriors of the Cannes setting, the story is fantastic is both senses of the word. When her parents are killed, a novice, Therese (Juliet Greco), leaves her convent in order to take care of her younger sister, Denise. Meanwhile a mature woman with money, staying at the Carlton, is being pursued by Max, a young man out for the main chance. The paths of Max and Denise cross, and although she does what she can, Therese cannot protect her sister from this lothario. Eventually, though, Max decides he loves not Denise but Therese, but Therese isn’t having any. Max is thoroughly worthless, but a charmer. His three love interests are in various stages of self-deception as he flits among them. It may be Max will leave town with one of the women, but not without the promise of a large sum of money attached.

Ginette Vincendeau,  in Jean-Pierre Melville: An American in Paris (2003), finds character motivations in the film unconvincing. However she likes a lot of the mise-en-scene. “Particularly remarkable is a scene on the beach in which Therese, having pursued Max ostensibly to retrieve the money he has stolen, is finally seen to fall for his charm. Hit by a pebble Max has thrown at her . . . Therese falters and he holds her in his arms on the moonlit beach, with the sea in the background. The shot is held for an unusual two minutes and twenty-three seconds. Although Therese’s sudden change of heart seems badly motivated, the shot pictorially has a poetic charge which overrides narrative inconsistency. At that point too, Greco’s hair, which had hitherto been tightly pulled back, suddenly falls loose on her shoulders and she is finally her ‘real’ self, in the more familiar Greco image.” (42-43)

There are many, many more wonderful images in the film, a feast for the eyes. No one in the NY area should miss the chance to see this.

---------

drinkanddestroy replies on Tuesday May 9:

I went to Film Forum tonight and saw the movie. I did not like it 6/10.

The theater was PACKED; these may be the only showings anyone gets to see of this movie, ever. The air conditioning was out of order in that screening room. Everyone was sweating and taking their outer layers of clothing off. I was sitting with 75-year-old women wearing only three layers!

Anyway, I am a big Melville fan; I'd seen 11 of his 13 movies (I also have not seen the one short), so I was happy to get to see this now. So  The only one I have not seen now is the one queer movie about Belmondo and the old man.

As I left the theater, I saw a big line to see Bob le Flambeur, which followed. I briefly thought about going to that movie also – even though I can easily rent a DVD from Netflix – but considering how hot it is in that screening room, I quickly disregarded that idea.

But, good job by Film Forum putting on this show.


Title: Re: Jean-Pierre Melville
Post by: dave jenkins on May 10, 2017, 06:14:13 AM
DJ wrote a bit about an obscure Melville film in RTLMYS THREAD
http://www.fistful-of-leone.com/forums/index.php?topic=7645.msg189491#msg189491
I did not like it 6/10.
Hit a little too close to home, did it? Yeah, that Max character reminded me of a certain someone I know.


Title: Re: Jean-Pierre Melville
Post by: dave jenkins on May 10, 2017, 07:12:36 AM
More thoughts on this fascinating film. Needless to say--but I'm saying it anyway, because, apparently, idiots read this board--there are SPOILERS ahead.

Ginette Vincendeau believes that there is ambiguity in the movie’s ending. It is generally supposed that Therese is travelling by train to rejoin her convent, but GV suggests she may have decided to join Max instead. True, she had told her sister that it was to the convent she was going, but GV notes that she could have been lying or may have changed her mind. GV thinks this makes the ending more interesting. What she fails to mention, though, is that later we actually see Therese at the convent. (Is there perhaps another print of the film that does not contain this scene?) Of course, you could construct a chain of events in your mind that justifies Therese’s change of heart yet again (after she learns of Max’s death, she decides to actually go to the convent she hadn’t really intended returning to at first), but such a multiplication of assumptions doesn’t seem to me very convincing. The simplest answer seems best: she said she was going to the convent, and because she meant what she said, that’s where she went.

Vincendeau spends so much effort on her clever reading that she fails to explore a much more interesting ambiguity. The train that kills Max is the one on which Therese is riding (to go back to the convent or wherever). Had he not been killed, Max would have certainly boarded the train. His informant told him Therese was on the train, so he would have gone looking for her. He believes that Therese is coming to meet him, so even if that is not her intention, meet him she shall. Intervening circumstance prevent us from learning what might have happened, but we are free to speculate. Even if Therese was convent-bound, would the reunion with Max have changed that? Maybe Therese would not have been able to resist his blandishments a second time.  Maybe Max had to die so that Therese’s destiny as a nun could be fulfilled? Years before Kieslowski's cinema-of-chance, Melville was prompting this kind of discussion.


Title: Re: Jean-Pierre Melville
Post by: drinkanddestroy on May 10, 2017, 07:51:23 PM
DJ,

LEON MORIN, PRIEST is playing next week at Film Forum, which is advertising this as the US premiere of the version with 11 minutes put back into the film. I am not certain whether those 11 minutes are in the Criterion DVD (I can email FF and ask).

Are you interested in going?

http://filmforum.org/film/leon-morin-priest-film

I would like to go Sunday at 8:20. If that does not work for you, I can go to the 9:30 showing on Monday or Thursday.


Title: Re: Jean-Pierre Melville
Post by: dave jenkins on May 11, 2017, 05:37:45 AM
DJ,

LEON MORIN, PRIEST is playing next week at Film Forum, which is advertising this as the US premiere of the version with 11 minutes put back into the film. I am not certain whether those 11 minutes are in the Criterion DVD (I can email FF and ask).

Are you interested in going?

http://filmforum.org/film/leon-morin-priest-film

I would like to go Sunday at 8:20. If that does not work for you, I can go to the 9:30 showing on Monday or Thursday.
The Criterion edition has them, I believe, as two deleted scenes in the supplements section. Neither scene does much to affect the plot. It would be mildly interesting to see those scenes integrated back into to the film, but it's not worth it to me to make a special trip to Manhattan just for that.


Title: Re: Jean-Pierre Melville
Post by: dave jenkins on May 13, 2017, 11:42:18 AM
DJ,

LEON MORIN, PRIEST is playing next week at Film Forum, which is advertising this as the US premiere of the version with 11 minutes put back into the film.
I watched the Criterion disc again. The two deleted scenes only account for 3-and-a-half minutes. If they really have put 11 minutes of actual footage back in (instead of, say, 8 minutes of restoration credits) then there may be some additions of interest there. Still, I'm not coming down for this. I'll wait until someone puts it out on disc and then buy that (yet again).


Title: Re: Jean-Pierre Melville
Post by: stanton on May 13, 2017, 12:33:59 PM
What's the runtime of the Criterion?


Title: Re: Jean-Pierre Melville
Post by: dave jenkins on May 13, 2017, 02:40:41 PM
According to the Criterion website (which you could have checked yourself, you bum) it is 117 min. The new DCP is supposed to be 130 min. Again, if the additional 11 or so minutes is actual footage that has been reinserted, there may be scenes there of some significance.

At the Criterion site I noted that their editions of the discs (both blu and DVD) are out of print. Perhaps they are reprinting with the new restoration?


Title: Re: Jean-Pierre Melville
Post by: stanton on May 13, 2017, 02:47:35 PM
According to the Criterion website (which you could have checked yourself, you bum) it is 117 min.

It's easier asking another bum.

My old Melville book lists the film with 2 runtimes: 114 and 128 min. No explanations for the differences though.

The German version was only 91 min short, but I saw it once on TV in one of the longer versions.


Title: Re: Jean-Pierre Melville
Post by: drinkanddestroy on May 13, 2017, 07:27:16 PM
According to the Criterion website (which you could have checked yourself, you bum) it is 117 min. The new DCP is supposed to be 130 min. Again, if the additional 11 or so minutes is actual footage that has been reinserted, there may be scenes there of some significance.

At the Criterion site I noted that their editions of the discs (both blu and DVD) are out of print. Perhaps they are reprinting with the new restoration?

On Amazon it says "tenporarily out of stock" https://www.amazon.com/gp/aw/d/B004WPYO7E/ref=mp_s_a_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1494725044&sr=8-1&pi=AC_SX236_SY340_QL65&keywords=leon+morin+priest&dpPl=1&dpID=41IeYATJSkL&ref=plSrch

I saw the movie once a while ago (I believe I rented the Criterion from Netflix). I did not like it. But I am willing to give it another chance. Especially if we have a chance now to see previously unreleased footage. I think I'll go Sunday night.


Title: Re: Jean-Pierre Melville
Post by: drinkanddestroy on May 13, 2017, 07:29:15 PM
Btw, I remember hearing somewhere (maybe Criterion bonus features?) that Melville shot lots more footage than what was in the final film. And the stuff that was cut had to do with life under the Ocuupation; the final film focuses more on the discussions with the priest.

Film Forum is calling this a director's cut, but I am not sure how accurate that is


Title: Re: Jean-Pierre Melville
Post by: stanton on May 14, 2017, 02:14:28 AM
In the wonderful interview book (by Rui Nogueira, my second Melville book) Melville's says that the original version ran 193 min, and that the 2 protagonists meet there only after over one hour of the runtime. But it was Melville himself who decided to cut it down to 128 min. Against the wishes of the producer and other of the film's participants btw.

After he had more or less wasted most of the 50s, he made only 3 not successful movies in the 12 years since Les enfants terribles, Melville probably was in need of a commercial success. In this interview with Nogueira from 1970 he asks himself if it was a mistake to cut the film down, but isn't sure what was right.
The runtime is here 114 min, with no explanation for the further difference to the mentioned 128 min runtime.

Maybe the 193 min cut was also lost in the flames, when his own studio burnt down in 1967.


Title: Re: Jean-Pierre Melville
Post by: drinkanddestroy on May 14, 2017, 02:35:39 AM
In the wonderful interview book (by Rui Nogueira, my second Melville book)

unfortunately, that Noguiera book is out of print; the rare used copies that are available are going for $120 + on Amazon/eBay.

I just read Ginette Vincendau's book Jean-Pierre Melville; An American in Paris (which, btw, quotes lots of stuff from Noguiera's interview book). While I appreciate Vincendeau writing what I believe is still the only English book on Melville (besides Nogueira's interview book), I did not realize that GV's book is not a biography but a film study. I can't stand film studies, that nerdy crap written by professors.



Title: Re: Jean-Pierre Melville
Post by: drinkanddestroy on May 14, 2017, 02:50:02 AM
In the wonderful interview book (by Rui Nogueira, my second Melville book) Melville's says that the original version ran 193 min, and that the 2 protagonists meet there only after over one hour of the runtime. But it was Melville himself who decided to cut it down to 128 min. Against the wishes of the producer and other of the film's participants btw.

After he had more or less wasted most of the 50s, he made only 3 not successful movies in the 12 years since Les enfants terribles, Melville probably was in need of a commercial success. In this interview with Nogueira from 1970 he asks himself if it was a mistake to cut the film down, but isn't sure what was right.
The runtime is here 114 min, with no explanation for the further difference to the mentioned 128 min runtime.

Maybe the 193 min cut was also lost in the flames, when his own studio burnt down in 1967.

Melville was not a very prolific filmmaker (13 features), because he was fiercely independent. Many of his movies were struggles to make and finance. The only real commercial flop he made was Two Men in Manhattan; it was after that movie that famously announced that he is going to start making commercial films. Leone Morin, Priest was the first film he subsequently made.
But two previous films of his were also adaptations of famous books: Le Silence de la Mer and Les Enfants Terribles. And whether or not he meant it when he said he'd go commercial after  Two Men in Manhattan , it did not hurt his work one bit: he still made great and stylish films. Films he made after Two Men in Manhattan include Le Samourai (which many consider his masterpiece and which may be his most stylish film), Le Doulos, Le Deuxieme Souffle, Army of Shadows, and Le Cercle Rouge. In my book, all those films get 8/10 or higher. The other movies he made after  Two Men in Manhattan are Leon Morin, Priest, which I did not like the one time I saw it, but I'll give it another watch; Magnet of Doom aka L'Aîné des Ferchaux, the only Melville feature I have not seen, and Un Flic, his final film, which was the worst of his crime movies and much criticized but far from terrible IMO.

As GV writes, the Cahiers people did criticize his later work, using against him his comments about going commercial.
But the Cahiers people were sometimes full of shit.


Title: Re: Jean-Pierre Melville
Post by: stanton on May 14, 2017, 03:36:39 AM
Melville was not a very prolific filmmaker (13 features), because he was fiercely independent. Many of his movies were struggles to make and finance. The only real commercial flop he made was Two Men in Manhattan; it was after that movie that famously announced that he is going to start making commercial films. Leone Morin, Priest was the first film he subsequently made.


I don't think he really went commercial, otherwise he had done something different than Leon Morin, but he had trouble to get films made then, and he knew he could not afford to make a real flop.

I also don't think that any of his 50s film made money, not sure about his 2 early ones, but I doubt that they did. Maybe Bob le flambeur had a sort of success, but he was in a difficult position. He got some recognition and had some influence on younger filmmakers, but his outsider status made his projects look risky for producers.

Well, in the end he could make films on a regular basis up to his premature death, even if there was another bigger gap of 4 years between 1962 and 66. And he had enough success in these years, he could work with some of the big stars (Belmondo, Ventura, Delon, Deneuve), and he got his well deserved critical acclaim.


Title: Re: Jean-Pierre Melville
Post by: dave jenkins on May 14, 2017, 11:33:50 AM
I don't think he really went commercial, otherwise he had done something different than Leon Morin, but he had trouble to get films made then, and he knew he could not afford to make a real flop.

I also don't think that any of his 50s film made money, not sure about his 2 early ones, but I doubt that they did. Maybe Bob le flambeur had a sort of success, but he was in a difficult position. He got some recognition and had some influence on younger filmmakers, but his outsider status made his projects look risky for producers.
From what I understand, When You Read This Letter (1953) did very well at the box office. Leon Morin was a Carlo Ponti production of a best-selling novel starring 2 of the biggest French stars of the period. There was simply no way that wasn't going to be commercially successful. The real mystery is why Ponti gave the property to Melville to direct--he could have tapped just about anyone.

G.V. makes the very good point that the film combines elements of the New Wave (the very talky scenes) with classical filmmaking techniques. This was a good strategy for a dual story-telling approach (life under the Occupation/a woman in love with her priest), and perhaps Melville was one of the few people who could pull that off. Anyway, the woman who wrote the autobiographical novel liked the adaptation, and Melville claimed that was sufficient gratification for him.

This is my favorite Melville, mostly because it's a film about adults. The gangster films are mostly pitched toward children, which is why Drink likes them so much. The one gangster film that has something resembling real life is Second Wind, but of course that plays a lot like a sequel to Sautet's The Big Risk (and borrows from it). Army of Shadows is my second favorite Melville--the idea of using gangster film conventions to explode the myth of the French Resistance was a genius move. It perhaps should sit alongside Once Upon a Time in the West as another shining example of Postmodern filmmaking.


Title: Re: Jean-Pierre Melville
Post by: dave jenkins on May 14, 2017, 11:45:03 AM
On Amazon it says "tenporarily out of stock" https://www.amazon.com/gp/aw/d/B004WPYO7E/ref=mp_s_a_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1494725044&sr=8-1&pi=AC_SX236_SY340_QL65&keywords=leon+morin+priest&dpPl=1&dpID=41IeYATJSkL&ref=plSrch
Dude, if amazon tells you something is out of stock, and Criterion tells you on their website that the title is out of print, believe Criterion.


Title: Re: Jean-Pierre Melville
Post by: stanton on May 14, 2017, 03:03:31 PM
From what I understand, When You Read This Letter (1953) did very well at the box office. Leon Morin was a Carlo Ponti production of a best-selling novel starring 2 of the biggest French stars of the period. There was simply no way that wasn't going to be commercially successful. The real mystery is why Ponti gave the property to Melville to direct--he could have tapped just about anyone.


It was a film that had a certain commercial appeal, but I'm not sure how big that was.

1. Was the novel really a bestseller, or only a critical acclaimed book?

2. Ponti produced all sort of films, some of them were far from being commercial. Stuff by Godard, Varda or Demy.

3. Riva was no star, but an actress who made a famous film, but not one which was made to make money.

4. Not sure if Belmondo was in these years, despite Breathless, the big star he was few years later.

I think it was still a risky film, apart from the fact that every film can become a flop, even despite stars and famous novels and well known directors.

Melville's gangster films are for (grown up) childs? Not really ...


Title: Re: Jean-Pierre Melville
Post by: drinkanddestroy on May 14, 2017, 04:11:32 PM


Melville's gangster films are for (grown up) childs? Not really ...

DJ thinks all gangster films are for kids. Doesn't matter if it's the Cagney films of the '30's or the French films of the '50's and '60's. DJ's father was a cop so he hates criminals. Can't separate movies from real life. I truly pity him as there are so many great movies he can't enjoy


Title: Re: Jean-Pierre Melville
Post by: dave jenkins on May 14, 2017, 04:38:33 PM
I can enjoy them, but they are just Marvel Comics kinds of films. All genre films are. Some are better than others, natch. But with few exceptions, the very best films are those that resist all genre classifications.

I re-discovered this thread, which has some important Melville info at the beginning, but then devolves into pointless Frenchifying. But those first two posts are good: http://www.fistful-of-leone.com/forums/index.php?topic=268.0


Title: Re: Jean-Pierre Melville
Post by: dave jenkins on May 14, 2017, 05:07:22 PM
It was a film that had a certain commercial appeal, but I'm not sure how big that was.

1. Was the novel really a bestseller, or only a critical acclaimed book?

2. Ponti produced all sort of films, some of them were far from being commercial. Stuff by Godard, Varda or Demy.

3. Riva was no star, but an actress who made a famous film, but not one which was made to make money.

4. Not sure if Belmondo was in these years, despite Breathless, the big star he was few years later.

I think it was still a risky film, apart from the fact that every film can become a flop, even despite stars and famous novels and well known directors.
GV has box office totals for France (initial release, I assume). They are as follows:
Le Silence de la mer          1, 371, 687
Le Enfant terribles                 719, 844
When You Read This Letter 1, 160, 986
Bob le flambeur                     716, 920
Two Men in Manhattan           308, 524
Leon Morin                        1, 702, 860
Le Doulos                          1, 475, 391
Magnet of Doom                 1, 484, 948
Second Wind                      1, 912, 749
Le Samourai                       1, 932, 372
Army of Shadows                1, 401, 822
The Red Circle                    4, 339, 821
Un Flic                               2, 832, 912

Leon Morin established him as a reliable maker of commercial films, and his box office was consistent ever afterwards. In fact, as total annual admissions in France plummeted (from 400 million in 1949 to 177 million in 1972) his market share steadily increased as well.


Title: Re: Jean-Pierre Melville
Post by: drinkanddestroy on May 15, 2017, 02:09:57 PM
I saw Le Doulos the other day at Film Forum.

Lately I am noticing that some dvd's that I was able to rent from Netflix are now no longer available on Netflix, and the discs are available on Amazon either (except, in some cases, rare used copies for high prices). In some cases they're available for digital download via Amazon or iTunes, but others are not. So maybe DJ was right after all; I should buy discs and not rely on them being available for rental. Le Doulos is one of those movies - I am pretty sure I rented the DVD a few years ago from Netflix; but it's no longer available, and the few discs on Amazon are expensive. Anyway, once I order my region-free BRD player this weekend, I'll have more discs to choose from  :)

When I saw the Criterion a few years ago, I hated the cinematography - this movie was the harshest black I have ever seen in a black-and-white movie. This time, at Film Forum, I didn't notice that at all. I'm not sure if the FF projection looks different than the Criterion, or if since that time my sensibilities have changed.

Anyway, Le Doulos gets an 8/10. It's avery good movie, but ...

spoiler alert

I did not like the "reveal" - it's just Belmondo telling us that everything we thought we knew is not true. I wish there has been a more creative way to show us that, rather than simply having him tell us (even though there are flashbacks playing as he speaks), I'd have preferred if that has been handled differently. (I guess this is sort of the same complaint with the reveal in Vertigo.


Title: Re: Jean-Pierre Melville
Post by: dave jenkins on May 15, 2017, 02:41:42 PM

When I saw the Criterion a few years ago, I hated the cinematography - this movie was the harshest black I have ever seen in a black-and-white movie. This time, at Film Forum, I didn't notice that at all. I'm not sure if the FF projection looks different than the Criterion, or if since that time my sensibilities have changed.
There a reason why Criterion is called The House of Black Crush. I don't doubt that they fiddled with the contrast. Hey, was that thing projected at FF a DCP or a film print?


Title: Re: Jean-Pierre Melville
Post by: drinkanddestroy on May 15, 2017, 04:00:43 PM
There a reason why Criterion is called The House of Black Crush. I don't doubt that they fiddled with the contrast. Hey, was that thing projected at FF a DCP or a film print?

http://filmforum.org/film/le-doulos-melville-film-5-10   35 mm

In her book, GV mentions that Hayer's photography is "harsh." (She doesn't mean it in a negative way as I do). Which means that it was intended this way (or maybe Criterion made it harshER; or maybe she had only seen the Criterion. Who knows)



Title: Re: Jean-Pierre Melville
Post by: drinkanddestroy on May 16, 2017, 01:16:19 AM
There a reason why Criterion is called The House of Black Crush. I don't doubt that they fiddled with the contrast. Hey, was that thing projected at FF a DCP or a film print?

It says here that it was 35 mm   http://filmforum.org/film/le-doulos-melville-film-5-10

On page 146 of her book, GV writes, regarding Le Doulos: "Nicolas Hayer's harsh black-and-white photography is here put to excellent use in the depiction of a grim environment, in contrast to Henri Decae's diffuse and lyrical light in, for example, Bob le flambeur.

(Nevermind my disagreement with GV over whether the harsh b/w cinematography is a good thing.) The fact that GV says it was harsh b/w cinematography means that the film was indeed shot that way, and it was not just that CC messed with the print. GV wrote her book in 2003. The Criterion DVD was released in 2008. So in her book, she was not referring to the Criterion disc.

Of course, anything is possible: Maybe whichever version she did see had also messed around with it. (Maybe Criterion used the same source?) Or maybe the film was indeed shot with harsh b/w cinematography, but Criterion made it even harshER. Who knows. I just know that I saw the movie 3 years ago – when I was certainly no b/w-cinematography expert, and never noticed this stuff – and it jumped out at me, I could not stand how black the blacks were; it significantly affected my enjoyment of the movie. But watching it the other day at FF, I didn't notice that at all. The issue of cinematography never crossed my mind.

If you have the DVD, dj, you can give it a spin and tell me what you think ....


Title: Re: Jean-Pierre Melville
Post by: drinkanddestroy on May 16, 2017, 02:04:15 AM
continuing discussion regarding Quand tu liras cette lettre aka When You Read This Letter(1953) ... and, I'll say this for the final time in this thread, there are spoilers


More thoughts on this fascinating film. Needless to say--but I'm saying it anyway, because, apparently, idiots read this board--there are SPOILERS ahead.

Ginette Vincendeau believes that there is ambiguity in the movie’s ending. It is generally supposed that Therese is travelling by train to rejoin her convent, but GV suggests she may have decided to join Max instead. True, she had told her sister that it was to the convent she was going, but GV notes that she could have been lying or may have changed her mind. GV thinks this makes the ending more interesting. What she fails to mention, though, is that later we actually see Therese at the convent. (Is there perhaps another print of the film that does not contain this scene?) Of course, you could construct a chain of events in your mind that justifies Therese’s change of heart yet again (after she learns of Max’s death, she decides to actually go to the convent she hadn’t really intended returning to at first), but such a multiplication of assumptions doesn’t seem to me very convincing. The simplest answer seems best: she said she was going to the convent, and because she meant what she said, that’s where she went.

Vincendeau spends so much effort on her clever reading that she fails to explore a much more interesting ambiguity. The train that kills Max is the one on which Therese is riding (to go back to the convent or wherever). Had he not been killed, Max would have certainly boarded the train. His informant told him Therese was on the train, so he would have gone looking for her. He believes that Therese is coming to meet him, so even if that is not her intention, meet him she shall. Intervening circumstance prevent us from learning what might have happened, but we are free to speculate. Even if Therese was convent-bound, would the reunion with Max have changed that? Maybe Therese would not have been able to resist his blandishments a second time.  Maybe Max had to die so that Therese’s destiny as a nun could be fulfilled? Years before Kieslowski's cinema-of-chance, Melville was prompting this kind of discussion.


I think there is enough ambiguity in the ending that – even if you think one or the other is more likely – GV was correct to mention and discuss the ambiguity, and the possibilities. I do believe there is good argument for it being ambiguous.

(It's too bad that no disc is available, so I can't go back and refer to the movie; I have to remember what we saw) :

A) You say that Therese "said she was going to the convent, and because she meant what she said, that’s where she went." Whom did she say this to? Max or Denise? I seem to recall that before Therese left, she told Denise specifically saying that she will not be leaving her for good, but will be coming back. Am I wrong? If she is really intending going back to the convent and become a nun, would she really tell Denise a blatant lie like that?

B) RE: "What she fails to mention, though, is that later we actually see Therese at the convent. (Is there perhaps another print of the film that does not contain this scene?)"
 To me, the fact that we see Therese at the convent at the end is not proof that she was intending to go there all along. You can certainly say that she was indeed going to Max, but once he is killed, she returns to the convent?  Once Max is dead she has nothing left for her outside the convent. Maybe she even takes it as a sign from God: He has punished the evil Max; he is now punished for his sins, and now Therese no longer has the temptation of Max, and she eventually returns to the convent. Of course, she has to take care of Denise, but maybe she waits a few years before returning to the convent. We don't know how long after Max's death that final scene takes place. Think of that scene as the epilogue. It's nice matching scenes, opening and closing at the convent. Much better than if the movie had ended simply with Max's death. I can't believe there was any version without that closing scene at the convent

C) If I recall correctly: When the train pulls into the station – where Max is supposed to come on, but unbeknownst to Therese, he is dead – I seem to remember that Therese pulls the window shade down, but not right away; she waits a good few moments, and eventually pulls the shade down. Do you recall that as well? Or am I wrong? If that is correct, that can be interpreted as that she was conflicted ... It was only after some time that she is able to pull the shade down (i.e., trying to hide from Max, to make sure he doesn't see her). Until she pulls the shade down, she was hoping he would come on. Or perhaps we can even say she was conflicted and unsure herself of what she would do. She took the train that night, praying that God give her the strength to resist Max's advances ... she really was not sure if she'd go off with him or go on to the convent, even all the way until they pulled into the station. Finally, only after they are in the station for a while, she is able to conquer her temptations and shut him out of her life.

Bottom line: from the fact that - if I recall correctly - she waits  a few moments before pulling down that shade, it means she is expecting Max to be at the station, and in some way conflicted.

D) If you want to read it as Therese clearly, unambiguously, and unconflictedly going back to the convent, then why the hell did she take that specific train? She knows Max is expecting her to be on that train. She knows he is waiting for her at that station, and will walk on and try to seduce her into coming with him. If she really just wanted to go back to the convent and absolutely did not want to see him, why the hell would she take the one specific train that he is expecting to meet her on?

To be clear: I'm not trying to argue that she was definitely going to meet Max. What I am saying is that there is very good reason to say that she is at least conflicted or that the ending is intended to be ambiguous.

E) RE: your final paragraph: speculating what coulda-woulda-shoulda happened if Max had not died, that's not very interesting to me


F) I'll throw in here another possibility - perhaps it seems a bit far-fetched, but maybe not impossible: Is it possible that Therese never finds out what happens to Max?
We obviously know that at the time of Max's death, neither Therese nor anyone else on the train (except the engineer) knows that Max has been run over by the train. So we just assume that she found out sometime later? Perhaps not. Perhaps she simply thinks that Max never showed up. Maybe she thinks that he believed her when she said she won't be meeting him. Whatever. Maybe she was hoping to meet him, maybe not. Now she thinks he got discouraged and ran away. Whatever. But she never finds out what happened to him. As I recall, in the final scene she asks forgiveness simply for having kept Max and Denise apart - there's no mention of Max's death, correct? In that case, maybe Therese is still unaware of his death. She feels guilty that because Max loved her, he did not marry Denise. So she asks forgiveness for being the cause of Denise not having married Max. But she has no idea about his death. I don't think this is so far-fetched, actually. Because we know that nobody on the train is aware that the train has run over somebody.  The train pulls out of the station and travels on, and nobody knows it has killed someone. If we are to assume that by the end of the movie Therese is indeed aware of Max's death, what is the significance of her not being aware by the time the train pulls put of the station? Wouldn't that be truly awesome if Therese goes back to the convent – either because she was always intending to do so; or because once Max failed to show up, she figured he had ditched her and she was done with him, whatever – without ever having known that he has died. She feels guilty for being responsible for keeping him and Denise apart, without ever knowing that she is actually responsible for his death?

 >:D >:D >:D >:D >:D


Title: Re: Jean-Pierre Melville
Post by: dave jenkins on May 16, 2017, 06:47:55 AM
continuing discussion regarding Quand tu liras cette lettre aka When You Read This Letter(1953) ... and, I'll say this for the final time in this thread, there are spoilers


I think there is enough ambiguity in the ending that – even if you think one or the other is more likely – GV was correct to mention and discuss the ambiguity, and the possibilities. I do believe there is good argument for it being ambiguous.

(It's too bad that no disc is available, so I can't go back and refer to the movie; I have to remember what we saw) :

A) You say that Therese "said she was going to the convent, and because she meant what she said, that’s where she went." Whom did she say this to? Max or Denise? I seem to recall that before Therese left, she told Denise specifically saying that she will not be leaving her for good, but will be coming back. Am I wrong? If she is really intending going back to the convent and become a nun, would she really tell Denise a blatant lie like that?

No, I mean it is her intention to go to the convent and then come back but her plans change once Max is dead--she decides to stay at the convent (I'm assuming she knows he died--it would have been announced in the newspaper, such things were big news in those days). I don't think Therese ever lies, so I don't believe she would tell Denise an untruth if she were intending to run away with Max. She meant what she said at the time she said it but things changed. Of course, when we see Therese at the end, we don't know how much time has passed. Maybe she went to the convent, returned to Denise, then went back to the convent after finding out Max had died.

One of the things GV doesn't take into consideration is Therese's character as it is demonstrated throughout the film. She is trying very hard to resist Max--hence the bit where she slams her hand in the dresser drawer, mortifying her flesh. Remember, it is not only her religious scruples that concern her--Denise is in love with Max, and Therese would be stealing her man if she took him for herself. Since leaving the convent, her entire program has been about doing things for Denise. She would certainly sublimate her own desires to fulfill those of her sister.

Sure, ambiguity is usually more interesting than obviousness, but in this case I have a very hard time believing that Therese would throw over everything she has stood for to be with Max.


Title: Re: Jean-Pierre Melville
Post by: drinkanddestroy on May 16, 2017, 09:05:55 AM

One of the things GV doesn't take into consideration is Therese's character as it is demonstrated throughout the film. She is trying very hard to resist Max--hence the bit where she slams her hand in the dresser drawer, mortifying her flesh. Remember, it is not only her religious scruples that concern her--Denise is in love with Max, and Therese would be stealing her man if she took him for herself. Since leaving the convent, her entire program has been about doing things for Denise. She would certainly sublimate her own desires to fulfill those of her sister.

Sure, ambiguity is usually more interesting than obviousness, but in this case I have a very hard time believing that Therese would throw over everything she has stood for to be with Max.

We have already seen that she is conflicted about Max.  Love makes people do foolish things that they wouldn't do otherwise. I'm not ready to say that I'm 100% sure that she would conquer feelings for Max just because Denise loves Max. She is conflicted.


Title: Re: Jean-Pierre Melville
Post by: dave jenkins on May 16, 2017, 09:59:34 AM
We have already seen that she is conflicted about Max.  Love makes people do foolish things that they wouldn't do otherwise. I'm not ready to say that I'm 100% sure that she would conquer feelings for Max just because Denise loves Max. She is conflicted.
This film is structured like a tragedy, which means somebody has to die at the end. It turns out to be Max in a surprising turn of events, but it could have been Therese. Returning to the convent is one way to die (mortifying the flesh). A literal death was possible too: conflicted about her desire for Max and her need to gratify her sister, she jumps in front of the train so that Max and her sister won't be separated on her account. Of course, a good Catholic wouldn't usually consider suicide, but if "love makes people do foolish things that they wouldn't otherwise" is true, we would have to allow the possibility.


Title: Re: Jean-Pierre Melville
Post by: dave jenkins on May 16, 2017, 04:18:43 PM
D) If you want to read it as Therese clearly, unambiguously, and unconflictedly going back to the convent, then why the hell did she take that specific train? She knows Max is expecting her to be on that train. She knows he is waiting for her at that station, and will walk on and try to seduce her into coming with him. If she really just wanted to go back to the convent and absolutely did not want to see him, why the hell would she take the one specific train that he is expecting to meet her on?
I don't believe this is the case (and yeah, it would be nice to have a disc to check). Max told Therese to meet him the next day at a specific place, but I don't believe he gave her a definite time. Isn't that the whole point of having the woman informant watching for her so that she can call Max and tell him if/when she's coming? Otherwise, why does he need this info? He can simply wait for Therese to show up at the rendezvous time and if she doesn't he'll know she decided against him. Also, the inserts we see of Therese on the train are not consistent with a character waiting for someone. She never looks like she expects someone to show up. In fact, if she thought Max was going to join her on the train, but didn't see him on the platform, wouldn't she get off to see if she could find him? I never got the idea there was a definite plan ("I'll board the train and find you"). When Max crosses the tracks for the platform on the other side he waits for the last minute because he knows Theresa is on the train. Otherwise he would have crossed earlier to look for her. But Therese doesn't definitely know Max is coming. In fact, she seems oblivious to the possibility that someone will join her. Maybe, even, she was hoping to sneak through the station without Max realizing she was on the train. Maybe that's the significance of pulling down the blinds?

Huh, there really is a lot of ambiguity in that ending!


Title: Re: Jean-Pierre Melville
Post by: dave jenkins on May 17, 2017, 11:16:35 AM
FF is extending their Leon Morin run over the weekend. I'm starting to feel like I may go down after all. Those extra 11 minutes have really piqued my interest.


Title: Re: Jean-Pierre Melville
Post by: drinkanddestroy on May 18, 2017, 12:17:50 AM
FF is extending their Leon Morin run over the weekend. I'm starting to feel like I may go down after all. Those extra 11 minutes have really piqued my interest.
If I were you - i.e., I had a chance to see 11 extra minutes of a movie I love - I'd definitely go.

I went last week. I saw the dvd once, a few years ago; I do remember it enough to know which material at FF is new. If you do go, I'd appreciate if you'd let me know which scenes are new.

I saw somewhere, a few years ago, that in the final film Melville did not use a lot of his footage of the Occupation aspect of the story, but focused on the religion stuff. So my guess is that the added material probably has to do with the Occupation. But it's just a guess. (I do not know if Melville cut the Occupation scenes simply because the movie would've been too long otherwise, or if he made a specific decision to do it this way.

GV quotes Melville  as saying that this book was the best book he ever read about the Occupation, but to me the movie really does not focus on the Occupation. The story could've been anywhere, anytime; the Occupation has little bearing on the story. This is much more about the conversations with the priest. And these conversations have almost nothing to do with the Occupation. IMO The movie could've been said anywhere anytime, and that would not have been much different.


I am not a big fan of this movie. It was filmed beautifully, looks great, and the performances by Riva and Belmondo - especially Riva - were terrific. But the story just doesn't interest me. Religion has never interested me as a movie topic.


Title: Re: Jean-Pierre Melville
Post by: dave jenkins on May 18, 2017, 05:19:49 AM

I saw somewhere, a few years ago, that in the final film Melville did not use a lot of his footage of the Occupation aspect of the story, but focused on the religion stuff. So my guess is that the added material probably has to do with the Occupation. But it's just a guess. (I do not know if Melville cut the Occupation scenes simply because the movie would've been too long otherwise, or if he made a specific decision to do it this way.

GV quotes Melville  as saying that this book was the best book he ever read about the Occupation, but to me the movie really does not focus on the Occupation. The story could've been anywhere, anytime; the Occupation has little bearing on the story. This is much more about the conversations with the priest. And these conversations have almost nothing to do with the Occupation. IMO The movie could've been said anywhere anytime, and that would not have been much different.
Except that the film repeatedly makes the point that Morin is a babe magnet largely because all the men in town are gone. It's doubtful Barny would have spent so much time with him if her husband had lived and/or there were other desirable men around. The war and Occupation provide a specific set of circumstances that allow for what transpires. Hard to imagine a similar set of circumstances occurring under different scenarios.


Title: Re: Jean-Pierre Melville
Post by: dave jenkins on May 23, 2017, 11:55:10 AM
I only just noticed this now: https://www.criterion.com/current/posts/2711-out-of-print-announcement

Army of Shadows is now with StudioCanal, so no possibility of a Criterion reprint (but the StudioCanal release looks very good). This explains why Leon Morin is out of print (also The Red Circle and Le Doulos): StudioCanal owns them all. I guess I have to look to SC for the new expanded Leon Morin I want. The bad thing about SC is that they only infrequently release in the States. But since I have a region-free player that's not such a big deal . . .


Title: Re: Jean-Pierre Melville
Post by: drinkanddestroy on May 23, 2017, 12:33:18 PM
I only just noticed this now: https://www.criterion.com/current/posts/2711-out-of-print-announcement

Army of Shadows is now with StudioCanal, so no possibility of a Criterion reprint (but the StudioCanal release looks very good). This explains why Leon Morin is out of print (also The Red Circle and Le Doulos): StudioCanal owns them all. I guess I have to look to SC for the new expanded Leon Morin I want. The bad thing about SC is that they only infrequently release in the States. But since I have a region-free player that's not such a big deal . . .

did you see Leon Morin, Priest at Film Forum? Do you think the new version will be released on disc?

RE: Army of Shadows: do you know if the Studio Canal is better or worse than the Criterion? (of course, Criterion is more expensive).


Title: Re: Jean-Pierre Melville
Post by: dave jenkins on May 23, 2017, 01:28:57 PM
did you see Leon Morin, Priest at Film Forum? Do you think the new version will be released on disc?
I saw the new version and I think it will get a disc release.
Quote
RE: Army of Shadows: do you know if the Studio Canal is better or worse than the Criterion? (of course, Criterion is more expensive).
I don't own the Criterion blu (I may have the DVD somewhere) but I have the SC and it looks good. According to reports one isn't better than the other, but they have different color schemes. There is no way to know if either or neither is correct per the original colors in the theatrical release. But that's the world we now live in: it's harder and harder to know what films looked like in the past. Re-grading is the order of the day, and there seems to be no way to stop it.


Title: Re: Jean-Pierre Melville
Post by: drinkanddestroy on May 23, 2017, 05:57:27 PM
Which scenes from LM,P are the new ones?


Title: Re: Jean-Pierre Melville
Post by: dave jenkins on May 24, 2017, 07:42:37 AM
Which scenes from LM,P are the new ones?
There's a sequence where a family of 3 comes to hide out in Barny's flat. I wasn't sure if they were Jews or Communists or maybe both, but Barny knows them and doesn't like them. But she helps them. Eventually she places them with one of the women from the baptism scene, who has a house out of town (we see the house earlier in the film when they're getting the children dressed for church). The scene where Barny uses a combination of threats and humor to convince the woman to take the family in has a lot of charm. There is also a sequence (which is on the Criterion disc in the supplements as a deleted scene) about a woman Barny befriends who is later executed by the partisans. There are also extra seconds added to certain scenes: I noticed that the initial "confession" Barny makes to Morin was slightly extended. I think there are other cases, but I've forgotten them. I liked all the additional material, and I look forward to buying the new disc when/if it comes out.

I found my CC DVD of Army of Shadows last night and did a quick comparison with the StudioCanal Blu. The DVD upscales very nicely and looks amazing. In fact, I prefer the image to the SC, even with the lowered resolution. The colors on the Criterion look better to me than those on the SC (which seem artificially brightened). Also, dark clothing on the SC appeared to lose detail. And then you get a lot of supplements with the CC, including a feature-length commentary by GV (and she talks for almost the whole 145 minutes). In fact, there's a second disc entirely of supplements on the CC DVD. If you can get a copy of this you should (the SC blu has only a single extra, a modest documentary).


Title: Re: Jean-Pierre Melville
Post by: drinkanddestroy on May 24, 2017, 08:45:36 AM
Thanks for the info  O0


Title: Re: Jean-Pierre Melville
Post by: mike siegel on May 24, 2017, 10:26:50 AM
The film was lit that way. I saw it on 35mm and 16mm.


Title: Re: Jean-Pierre Melville
Post by: dave jenkins on May 24, 2017, 10:50:23 AM
The film was lit that way. I saw it on 35mm and 16mm.
Which way? The way it appears on the CC, or on the SC?


Title: Re: Jean-Pierre Melville
Post by: dave jenkins on May 24, 2017, 12:25:05 PM
Leon Morin, extended yet again! (now until the 30th at FF)


Title: Re: Jean-Pierre Melville
Post by: mike siegel on May 28, 2017, 03:55:58 AM
Which way? The way it appears on the CC, or on the SC?

I lost track, the thread goes all over the place...

I was talking about LES DOULOS. Which has a lot of contrast, by design...
The Criterion represents it very well I thought. I don't know the SC...


Title: Re: Jean-Pierre Melville
Post by: dave jenkins on May 28, 2017, 07:44:15 AM
I lost track, the thread goes all over the place...

I was talking about LES DOULOS. Which has a lot of contrast, by design...
The Criterion represents it very well I thought. I don't know the SC...
Oh, OK. I thought you were talking about Army of Shadows.


Title: Re: Jean-Pierre Melville
Post by: drinkanddestroy on May 29, 2017, 01:38:08 AM
Speaking of comparing Studio Canal to Criterion  (though these are not Melvilles, they are French crime films, so close enough ;) )

Touches Paz Au Geisbi and Le Trou each have been released on Criterion and Studio Canal. (The SC version costs much less.) Anyone know which is preferable for these two movies? Thanks  :)



Title: Re: Jean-Pierre Melville
Post by: XhcnoirX on May 30, 2017, 03:34:10 PM
Speaking of comparing Studio Canal to Criterion  (though these are not Melvilles, they are French crime films, so close enough ;) )

Touches Paz Au Geisbi and Le Trou each have been released on Criterion and Studio Canal. (The SC version costs much less.) Anyone know which is preferable for these two movies? Thanks  :)

Not that it helps, but Studio Canal will release blu-rays for both movies based on new restorations mid July. That should at least blow the old DVD's out of the water picture quality wise. No clue what they will have extras wise.

http://www.blu-ray.com/news/?id=20882 (the dates have been pushed bak since that announcement).


Title: Re: Jean-Pierre Melville
Post by: drinkanddestroy on May 30, 2017, 05:01:07 PM
Not that it helps, but Studio Canal will release blu-rays for both movies based on new restorations mid July. That should at least blow the old DVD's out of the water picture quality wise. No clue what they will have extras wise.

http://www.blu-ray.com/news/?id=20882 (the dates have been pushed bak since that announcement).

Thanks!!  O0

I'll wait  :)


Title: Re: Jean-Pierre Melville
Post by: dave jenkins on June 02, 2017, 06:00:51 PM
Leon Morin extended yet again (Now until June 6). What is it New Yorkers get that Drink cannot begin to fathom? Probably everything.


Title: Re: Jean-Pierre Melville
Post by: Jill on June 14, 2017, 06:43:39 AM
Is it possible I haven't posted in this yet?

I like both The Samurai and The Red Circle. Melville has a way of invoking the noir feel in colour and his movies are beautiful to look at (a young Alain Delon is always a bonus ;)), and I love a well-done downer ending. His style also certainly had roots in the French poetic realism (which I like to sum up as "Jean Gabin, who does not yet look like a grandpa, plays a Doomed Working Class Hero and dies. It's probably raining. There is a 90% chance for mist").


Title: Re: Jean-Pierre Melville
Post by: drinkanddestroy on June 25, 2017, 12:39:54 AM
I just saw Army of Shadows a second time (Criterion DVD, rented from Netflix) 8/10

I wish it some more action. At least one good "Resistance" scene showing them blowing up a train or killing some Nazis or something like that. In this movie, all the group seems to be "resisting" is resisting arrest by the Nazis. The only actual offensive action (as opposed to defensive) we seem them take is killing the informer.

BTW, the scene in Paul Meurisse's house, the music playing is the fifth movement of Beethoven's 6th Symphony, known as the Pastoral Symphony. (Yes, the Pastoral is a rare symphony with five movements, instead of the traditional four.)

Here is a performance of the Pastoral by the Boston Symphony Orchestra, conducted by Leonard Bernstein https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=t2VY33VXnrQ
The 5th movement begins at 34:56


Title: Re: Jean-Pierre Melville
Post by: dave jenkins on June 25, 2017, 12:12:19 PM
I just saw Army of Shadows a second time (Criterion DVD, rented from Netflix) 8/10

I wish it some more action. At least one good "Resistance" scene showing them blowing up a train or killing some Nazis or something like that.
No, no, no. This is not that kind of movie. You are missing the whole point.

Quote
In this movie, all the group seems to be "resisting" is resisting arrest by the Nazis. The only actual offensive action (as opposed to defensive) we seem them take is killing the informer.
Informers. Don't forget the one at the end.

This film brilliantly exposes the myth of the resistance. What did those guys (and gals) actually accomplish? They put all their energy into resisting arrest (as you say), escaping from prison, killing each other. Did they shorten the war? No. Did they achieve retribution on their occupiers? Not in any meaningful way. Did they punish collaborators? Yes, but so what, and most of that came after the war anyway. The whole project was a colossal waste, but spun by de Gaulle and others to help the French feel better about themselves during and immediately after the war.

Melville's genius move was to ignore the usual jingoist approach to the material and present everything as if it were one of his crime dramas. The police are the Nazis (and their French underlings). The crooks are the Resistors. As in the crime films, there is an equivalence established between the two groups. What is paramount, though, is the dynamic within the groups, especially that of the Resistors: loyalty is important, but it is always betrayed, and thus, retribution is constantly being exacted. There are no larger issues--everything else, the fight against the Occupation, the war, are McGuffins.

The proof that this was intentional on Melville's part is in how he made changes to his source material. In reality, the attempt to spring the guy from prison using the phony nurse was successful. Melville shows that as being a whole lot of nothing. At the end of the movie, we are told that all the members of the cell were captured and executed, but the character Ventura played actually survived the war. Melville made things worse than they really were, probably to underline the fact that the whole enterprise was pointless. Or, if not pointless, than an opportunity for transcendence that only a few characters could experience (e.g. the guy who denounces himself so he'll be arrested so that he can get into prison with his colleague).

This film is so much better than you can know, Drink. Please don't try to pull it down to your level. Stay with the crime films that are pitched to the 13-year-olds.


Title: Re: Jean-Pierre Melville
Post by: drinkanddestroy on June 25, 2017, 08:08:59 PM
Spoiler alert for "Army of Shadows"

---

Yes, Melville exploded the myth and romance of the Resistance, and used a gangster-movie style. Still, I think there should have been one scene at the beginning where they show the Resistance on offense. Show why the Nazis are arresting these people. The entire movie is nothing but defense - the only people who die are informers, and one Nazi who Ventura kills as he is escaping arrest.

p.s. I do not believe there is any way that Signoret would have been a snitch. She'd have said nothing, meaning her daughter would have been taken to the whorehouse. The group puts her out of her misery - thereby probably saving her daughter; once Signoret is dead, the Nazis will probably leave her daughter alone.


Title: Re: Jean-Pierre Melville
Post by: drinkanddestroy on July 04, 2017, 01:56:23 AM
I want to buy a disc of ARMY OF SHADOWS. Now that I have a region-free player, anyone have an  opinion on which disc is best, regardless of region?

BTW, I was looking at Beaver's screencaps http://www.dvdbeaver.com/film2/DVDreviews26/army_in_the_shadows.htm

He does not mention a Studio Canal version. He compares three versions: BFI Video, Criterion DVD, and Criterion BRD.  If you look at a screencaps (which, I always note, are untrustworthy  ;) ) to me it seems that on the Criterion BRD, the color is washed out or muted compared to the DVD. For example, buildings that have a yellow tinge in the DVD look whiter in the BRD.


There may not be a reason for me to pay extra for the BRD as opposed to the DVD.

And Beaver doesn't even mention Studio Canal.

Anyone have an opinion on this?

Thanks  :)


Title: Re: Jean-Pierre Melville
Post by: XhcnoirX on July 04, 2017, 03:53:34 AM
I have the Studiocanal blu-ray but haven't watched it yet.
It is reviewed here tho (with screencaps): http://www.blu-ray.com/movies/Army-of-Shadows-Blu-ray/66157/
It says it uses the same source as the Criterion blu-ray, but with a slightly different color grading.

Edit: Caps-a-holic has both the Criterion & Studiocanal blu-rays in their database: https://www.caps-a-holic.com/c_list.php?c=257 so you can compare them quite nicely.
For instance: https://www.caps-a-holic.com/c.php?a=1&x=592&y=212&d1=2511&d2=2512&s1=23102&s2=23093&l=0&i=5&go=1


Title: Re: Jean-Pierre Melville
Post by: dave jenkins on July 15, 2017, 11:11:58 AM
In a BFI press release detailing a Melville film series in UK cinemas, the following info is added parenthetically:
Quote
STUDIOCANAL will also release of a brand-new boxset of six key films by Jean-Pierre Melville, in celebration of
his centenary. Featuring several brand new 4k restorations as well as exclusive new extras, MELVILLE, THE
ESSENTIAL COLLECTION will include Le Doulos, Bob Le Flambeur, Léon Morin, Prêtre, L'Armée Des Ombres
and Le Cercle Rouge and will be available to own on DVD and Blu-Ray for the first time on September 12.
I'm guessing it will be region locked.


Title: Re: Jean-Pierre Melville
Post by: titoli on July 15, 2017, 04:31:58 PM
Or, if not pointless, than an opportunity for transcendence that only a few characters could experience (e.g. the guy who denounces himself so he'll be arrested so that he can get into prison with his colleague).

Uhm. But how Cassel can be sure he will be put in the same cell as the airman? I think that affair is moronic. Trascendentally so.


Title: Re: Jean-Pierre Melville
Post by: dave jenkins on July 15, 2017, 04:47:45 PM
The sacrificial intention is on par with the deed. Transcendentally speaking.


Title: Re: Jean-Pierre Melville
Post by: drinkanddestroy on July 15, 2017, 07:31:04 PM
In a BFI press release detailing a Melville film series in UK cinemas, the following info is added parenthetically .... I'm guessing it will be region locked.

That's great news! So, no reason for me to pay big bucks now for any individual discs; i'll wait for the SC boxset (though I counted only five films in your list, not six.)

Region-locking doesn't bother me anymore; I'm (finally!) region-free!

Any way to find out if LEON MORIN, PRIEST has the scenes that were added in at Film Forum in NY?


Title: Re: Jean-Pierre Melville
Post by: dave jenkins on July 15, 2017, 07:49:22 PM
That's great news! So, no reason for me to pay big bucks now for any individual discs; i'll wait for the SC boxset (though I counted only five films in your list, not six.)
They only listed 5. Speculation is that the sixth will be Un Flic, as SC owns the rights to that one too. Doesn't really matter as the extra disc isn't gonna make or break the deal for me.

Don't really know about Leon Morin, but I'm expecting it to be the longer cut.


Title: Re: Jean-Pierre Melville
Post by: drinkanddestroy on July 15, 2017, 07:52:17 PM
Uhm. But how Cassel can be sure he will be put in the same cell as the airman? I think that affair is moronic. Trascendentally so.

He couldn't be 100% sure, of course. But he was willing to give himself up on the chance. You can consider that heroic or moronic.

This movie is essentially about a bunch of failed attempts at resistance. While, as I mentioned previously, I'd have liked to see at least one action-packed success before the failures, the episode in Gestapo headquarters was good. It shows how they can plan a huge operation only to have it fail - and it shows how the Signoret character had to accept the decision that "he's too weak to travel" instantly; any hesitation or argument could have given them away.


Title: Re: Jean-Pierre Melville
Post by: drinkanddestroy on July 15, 2017, 07:54:37 PM
They only listed 5. Speculation is that the sixth will be Un Flic, as SC owns the rights to that one too. Doesn't really matter as the extra disc isn't gonna make or break the deal for me.

Don't really know about Leon Morin, but I'm expecting it to be the longer cut.

I just hope it doesn't cost a million bucks .... I'll probably get it no matter the price, whenever the pre-sale opens, or maybe wait until just after the boxset goes officially on sale; sometimes prices go down right after opening day. But I definitely have to purchase this  O0 O0 O0


Title: Re: Jean-Pierre Melville
Post by: dave jenkins on July 15, 2017, 09:06:30 PM
You can consider that heroic or moronic.
The same could be said for Oedipus when he puts his eyes out. You either have an instinctual understanding of tragedy or you don't.


Title: Re: Jean-Pierre Melville
Post by: titoli on July 15, 2017, 09:29:45 PM
He couldn't be 100% sure, of course. But he was willing to give himself up on the chance. You can consider that heroic or moronic.


Can't see any room for option. It is moronic, that's that.


Title: Re: Jean-Pierre Melville
Post by: titoli on July 15, 2017, 09:41:03 PM
The same could be said for Oedipus when he puts his eyes out. You either have an instinctual understanding of tragedy or you don't.

So by giving himself up to Gestapo Cassel was punishing himself for frigging his own mother?


Title: Re: Jean-Pierre Melville
Post by: titoli on July 15, 2017, 09:42:10 PM
The sacrificial intention is on par with the deed. Transcendentally speaking.

But only because he ends up in the same cell.


Title: Re: Jean-Pierre Melville
Post by: drinkanddestroy on July 15, 2017, 11:44:28 PM
But only because he ends up in the same cell.

Maybe the Resistance knew a little about the workings of the Gestapo prison. Maybe they knew that all high-value prisoners with knowledge of the Underground, to br tortured, are placed in the same area. Maybe he didn't even know it would be the same cell. Whatever, it's a matter of opinion. To me this is well within the cinematoc suspension of disbelief. Unlike, say, Angel Eyes showing up out of nowhere in the Northern prison camp, in the international cut of GBU that's missing the Fort Scene  ;)


Title: Re: Jean-Pierre Melville
Post by: titoli on July 16, 2017, 02:51:34 AM
Maybe the Resistance knew a little about the workings of the Gestapo prison. Maybe they knew that all high-value prisoners with knowledge of the Underground, to br tortured, are placed in the same area. Maybe he didn't even know it would be the same cell. Whatever, it's a matter of opinion. To me this is well within the cinematoc suspension of disbelief. Unlike, say, Angel Eyes showing up out of nowhere in the Northern prison camp, in the international cut of GBU that's missing the Fort Scene  ;)

Oh, sure, you can suspend disbelief. But that AE may have become a concentration camp boss it rhymes with his being a sob: it would have been different if he had tried his best to be put there as an inmate. We do not know how he got there but we also don't know that it would have been impossible and it is surely a role which allowed him to keep on doing what he did as a civilian.   In AOS we must believe that a man in his senses denounces himself to be tortured by Gestapo (and that's already hard to ingest: I never knew of anybody who did it), that he is absolutely certain he will resist torture and not make names (and only an imbecile can presume that) on the absolutely uncertain assumption he might be put in the same cell of his friend.  I think it is stretching verisimilitude a bit too much. And it would have been funny if he had been put in another cell: what then?


Title: Re: Jean-Pierre Melville
Post by: dave jenkins on July 16, 2017, 05:17:01 AM
So by giving himself up to Gestapo Cassel was punishing himself for frigging his own mother?
No. It was an example chosen to illustrate the futility of self sacrifice. Our literature is replete with other cases. Against edit, Antigone buries her brother and is punished for it. Her effort does her brother no good, but she felt compelled to do what she thought was right. Neither Oedipus or Antigone act to affect others, only to ennoble themselves. But they cannot do otherwise.

The interesting thing in Melville's film is that Cassel can't know he will land in the same cell as his buddy, but against the odds he does. This should signal that all will be well, cinematically speaking. But of course the effort--like all the efforts in the movie--ends only in tears. Melville is relentless in his approach and yet his underlining never becomes tiresome.


Title: Re: Jean-Pierre Melville
Post by: titoli on July 16, 2017, 11:28:39 AM
No. It was an example chosen to illustrate the futility of self sacrifice. Our literature is replete with other cases. Against edit, Antigone buries her brother and is punished for it. Her effort does her brother no good, but she felt compelled to do what she thought was right. Neither Oedipus or Antigone act to affect others, only to ennoble themselves. But they cannot do otherwise.

The interesting thing in Melville's film is that Cassel can't know he will land in the same cell as his buddy, but against the odds he does. This should signal that all will be well, cinematically speaking. But of course the effort--like all the efforts in the movie--ends only in tears. Melville is relentless in his approach and yet his underlining never becomes tiresome.
Of course, I was joking about Cassel friggin' his own mum (but I forgive you, as you have no sense of humor). The point is that the examples from greek tragedy have nothing to do with the case in question, as there's the hitch in AOS that Cassel's action would prove nothing if he'd end up in another cell. We'd  then be wondering why he's such an idiot. The fact that no reason is given about his certainty he will end up in the same cell proves my assumption.


Title: Re: Jean-Pierre Melville
Post by: dave jenkins on July 16, 2017, 03:21:40 PM
The point is that the examples from greek tragedy have nothing to do with the case in question, as there's the hitch in AOS that Cassel's action would prove nothing if he'd end up in another cell.
You don't understand my point at all (but I forgive you because you're an idiot.) Efficacy for others is completely beside the point. The tragic figure acts for his own benefit. He/she may hope others benefit from his/her action, but that is a secondary matter. He/she seeks transcendence, something he/she cannot help but do.

You can argue that Cassel is not a tragic figure, but I think that is an interpretive option worth leaving open. But I like the film more than you.
[/quote]


Title: Re: Jean-Pierre Melville
Post by: titoli on July 16, 2017, 04:46:31 PM
You don't understand my point at all (but I forgive you because you're an idiot.) Efficacy for others is completely beside the point. The tragic figure acts for his own benefit. He/she may hope others benefit from his/her action, but that is a secondary matter. He/she seeks transcendence, something he/she cannot help but do.

You can argue that Cassel is not a tragic figure, but I think that is an interpretive option worth leaving open. But I like the film more than you.

Your starting throwing offenses is your usual childish way to try to reinforce your weak assumptions. In fact you don't answer my objections. Your point that "the tragic figure acts for his own benefit" is debatable (you should specify what "benefit" means) but doesn't include the decisive adverb "foolishly" as it is case for Cassel, as his action, far from heroic, might end up in ridicule.


Title: Re: Jean-Pierre Melville
Post by: dave jenkins on July 17, 2017, 04:33:07 AM
Your starting throwing offenses is your usual childish way to try to reinforce your weak assumptions.
I don't know what you mean by "throwing offenses." I was parroting your own line from just a few posts ago. When you wrote "but I forgive you, as you have no sense of humor" were you trying to insult me? I did not take it so. I just saw that as a lame attempt at humor, and responded with some lame humor of my own. Of course my use of the term idiot was not meant to be offensive; I was merely stating what I see to be a fact. Granted, I am not a trained professional, and my finding is that of a layman's only, but I came by it honestly and would be willing to sign an affidavit to that effect. If pressed for evidence I would point to the thread called L'il Duce's Dog's Breakfast and the list of films compiled therein. No one reading through that list of mediocre selections and their assessments could have any doubt about the author's mental acuity. (What about the rare case where a "worthy" film was selected? These come under the heading Even a Stopped Clock is Correct Twice a Day.)

Quote
In fact you don't answer my objections.
Why the "s"? You have as far as I can determine only one objection: this film does not rise to the veracity of real life. This is hardly the kind of thing worth debating. And anyway, you only trot this truism out when it suits you. There are plenty of films that do not adequately encompass the complexity of all that is around us. For every film you denigrate for not being sufficiently realistic there is one you extol by ignoring its lack of verisimilitude. "Plot convenience" is a convention of narrative, filmed or otherwise. When the outcome of events is not unduly influenced by such a thing, most rational viewers overlook it.

Quote
Your point that "the tragic figure acts for his own benefit" is debatable (you should specify what "benefit" means)
I did, but you have ignored my remarks. Proof once again that you are not arguing in good faith, and are in fact trolling (which, when you leave your ghetto, is all you ever do on this board).

Quote
might end up in ridicule.
Feature films are, by definition, hypothetical. You intend, apparently, to lard a hypothetical with a hypothetical. This is fruitless, as William of Occam well knew. Troll titoli, engaging with you is always a waste of time. Goodbye.


Title: Re: Jean-Pierre Melville
Post by: titoli on July 17, 2017, 08:28:01 AM
I don't know what you mean by "throwing offenses." I was parroting your own line from just a few posts ago. When you wrote "but I forgive you, as you have no sense of humor" were you trying to insult me? I did not take it so. I just saw that as a lame attempt at humor, and responded with some lame humor of my own. Of course my use of the term idiot was not meant to be offensive; I was merely stating what I see to be a fact. Granted, I am not a trained professional, and my finding is that of a layman's only, but I came by it honestly and would be willing to sign an affidavit to that effect. If pressed for evidence I would point to the thread called L'il Duce's Dog's Breakfast and the list of films compiled therein. No one reading through that list of mediocre selections and their assessments could have any doubt about the author's mental acuity. (What about the rare case where a "worthy" film was selected? These come under the heading Even a Stopped Clock is Correct Twice a Day.)

 ;D  ;D You're trying to overcome yourself in bs. Hard feat, I'll grant that. But you're in a corner and trying to extricate yourself and so you're going into hysterics. Anyway, thanx for being such an assiduous reader of my thread. Wish I could reciprocate.


Quote
Why the "s"? You have as far as I can determine only one objection: this film does not rise to the veracity of real life. This is hardly the kind of thing worth debating. And anyway, you only trot this truism out when it suits you. There are plenty of films that do not adequately encompass the complexity of all that is around us. For every film you denigrate for not being sufficiently realistic there is one you extol by ignoring its lack of verisimilitude. "Plot convenience" is a convention of narrative, filmed or otherwise. When the outcome of events is not unduly influenced by such a thing, most rational viewers overlook it.

No, you're making as usual lots of confusion. To support your thesis, of course. In a Bunuel's movie (I mean, something like Le charme discret or Le phantome ) you do not look for verisimilitude. In a movie like  AOS, based on real characters and real facts I expect verisimilitude all around. Why the "s"? Because, as I wrote, you have to ingest 1)  One denouncing himself to Gestapo 2) exposing himself to torture like it were a joke, not knowing if he'll end up denouncing his comrades 3) Not knowing if his scheme will succeed

Quote
I did, but you have ignored my remarks.
You think you did. That's different.

Quote
Feature films are, by definition, hypothetical.
  Uh? Bazin wouldn't agree

Quote
Troll titoli, engaging with you is always a waste of time. Goodbye.
Will you keep on reading my thread?

[/quote]


Title: Re: Jean-Pierre Melville
Post by: drinkanddestroy on July 17, 2017, 04:13:44 PM
Some people on these boards really lower the level of debate/discussion with the constant personal attacks. It's kind of annoying.


Title: Re: Jean-Pierre Melville
Post by: titoli on July 18, 2017, 12:13:06 AM
Some people on these boards really lower the level of debate/discussion with the constant personal attacks. It's kind of annoying.

Yeah, especially when some people here consider defining another member of the board an "idiot" as paying him a compliment.


Title: Re: Jean-Pierre Melville
Post by: drinkanddestroy on July 18, 2017, 01:10:40 AM
Yeah, especially when some people here consider defining another member of the board an "idiot" as paying him a compliment.

You're absolutely correct.


Title: Re: Jean-Pierre Melville
Post by: dave jenkins on July 26, 2017, 03:11:08 AM
(https://images-na.ssl-images-amazon.com/images/I/71-3RuRjLWL._SL1500_.jpg)
Now 10 blus and 2 DVDs, 17 Oct.


Title: Re: Jean-Pierre Melville
Post by: drinkanddestroy on July 26, 2017, 11:49:12 AM
He made 13 features. Which one is missing from this set? I bet it's L'aîné des Ferchaux/Magnet of Doom, the only film I haven't seen.

I'm not sure about buying this set. Within the past year I purchased a bunch of Melville BRD's and DVD's. The discs I have look nice, I wonder if this new boxset will be  a major upgrade visually.
There are a few movies I didn't purchase because they are not available (or very rare and expensive) in Region 1 (e.g., Le Doulos, Army of Shadows; Bob le Flambeur I got on digital download) but now that I just got a region-free BRD player I can look for those movies in Region 2. So, should I spend all this money (the boxset is currently listed on amazon.fr for 119 euros) on a 12-disc boxset containing a number of movies that I already have and a number of movies I have zero interest in (Le Silence de la Mer, Les Enfants Terrible) just for the 4 or so movies that I want? I won't be able to understand that French booklet anyway, and the bonus features will probably be in French and who knows if they'll be subtitled?


It may be safer for me to just wait; after the boxset is released, maybe some of the films will be released individually?


Title: Re: Jean-Pierre Melville
Post by: XhcnoirX on August 03, 2017, 06:06:51 AM
Six of these will also get a UK boxset release: http://forum.blu-ray.com/showthread.php?t=294278

Hopefully these will also get released separately, I'm mainly interested in Bob Le Flambeur and Le Doulos.


Title: Re: Jean-Pierre Melville
Post by: drinkanddestroy on August 03, 2017, 08:41:13 AM
Six of these will also get a UK boxset release: http://forum.blu-ray.com/showthread.php?t=294278

Hopefully these will also get released separately, I'm mainly interested in Bob Le Flambeur and Le Doulos.

Great news! The movies I don't own yet are mainly these six. Even if they are not released individually, I'll buy this boxset rather than the 12-disc French one.


Title: Re: Jean-Pierre Melville
Post by: dave jenkins on August 28, 2017, 10:47:09 PM
Six of these will also get a UK boxset release: http://forum.blu-ray.com/showthread.php?t=294278
Quote
BONUS DVD INCLUDED IN THE BLU-RAY BOX SET

 In the mood for Melville - documentary feature (52 min)
 24 Heures de la vie d'un clown – Melville short (22 min)


Title: Re: Jean-Pierre Melville
Post by: drinkanddestroy on August 28, 2017, 10:58:47 PM
I checked Amazon.co.uk - the boxset does not appear to be available for purchase yet. Do the Brits not believe in pre-sales?


Title: Re: Jean-Pierre Melville
Post by: XhcnoirX on August 29, 2017, 01:20:21 AM
I checked Amazon.co.uk - the boxset does not appear to be available for purchase yet. Do the Brits not believe in pre-sales?

Yes they do: https://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B07534L84W :)


Title: Re: Jean-Pierre Melville
Post by: drinkanddestroy on August 31, 2017, 02:41:50 AM
Yes they do: https://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B07534L84W :)

--- Thanks! (Someone had posted that the set was called something like "Melville Essential" so I searched those words and that's why it never came up. I see now that the boxset is merely titled, "Jean-Pierre Melville.")

Release date for the 6-BRD British boxset is listed as December 4th. Can't wait!

I just did the pre-order. Although it's listed on Amazon.co.uk as 69.99 pounds, when I actually go through the steps to make the order, it says that the price is just 58.33 pounds, plus 3.08 pounds shipping and handling to USA. So total is 61.41 pounds. At the current exchange rate, that comes out to $79.19; but of course, the conversion won't be made my card is charged around the release date. So, I am rooting for the dollar to strengthen against the pound over the next few months  ;)

-- For those who want the 12-disc French boxset, pre-sale is available here https://goo.gl/F4ACK2 The boxset will be available October 17th. Cost right now is 119.99 euros for BRD boxset, and 99.99 euros for DVD boxset. Note, however, that according to blu-ray.com, even the BRD boxset has 2 films on DVD; only 10 of the films are BRD's. Also, don't assume that the French boxset will have English subtitles; before purchasing, make sure that it does.

-- There is further discussion of these boxsets at http://forum.blu-ray.com/showthread.php?t=294278

-- Also, Criterion will be releasing a BRD of Le Samourai on November 14. (Current price with the pre-order is $39.99) I recently purchased the Criterion DVD of that movie; I'll wait to see the reports on the BRD before deciding whether to double dip.


Title: Re: Jean-Pierre Melville
Post by: dave jenkins on August 31, 2017, 04:19:07 PM
https://www.amazon.fr/dp/B0731RR9B8/ref=sr_1_2?s=dvd&ie=UTF8&qid=1504216847&sr=1-2&keywords=Quand+tu+liras+cette+lettre

sous-titres: Anglais!

My favorite Melville, too. Yeah, baby!


Title: Re: Jean-Pierre Melville
Post by: drinkanddestroy on August 31, 2017, 06:40:08 PM
https://www.amazon.fr/dp/B0731RR9B8/ref=sr_1_2?s=dvd&ie=UTF8&qid=1504216847&sr=1-2&keywords=Quand+tu+liras+cette+lettre

sous-titres: Anglais!

My favorite Melville, too. Yeah, baby!


FAVORITE Melville?

I know your father hates gangsters, but come on, bro. The gangster movies are awesome. And he has other non-gangster movies better than this one (LEON MORIN, PRIEST; and TWO MEN IN MANHATTAN).
This isbthe most un-Melvillian of all Melville movies.

The real question is, has anyone here seen MAGNET OF DOOM?  That one does not seem to be available anywhere. The most obscure of Melville's 13 features. In the soon-to be-released 12-disc French boxset, that is the one missing. From GV's book, it seems that one is all about gay subtext. Maybe if DJ sees it, he'll have a new favorite Melville film  >:D


Title: Re: Jean-Pierre Melville
Post by: dave jenkins on September 01, 2017, 11:04:00 AM
It was available on YouTube or Hulu or someplace awhile ago . . . I started watching it but got bored and turned it off. The only good thing I can think to say about it is that it seemed better than Two Men in Manhattan.


Title: Re: Jean-Pierre Melville
Post by: drinkanddestroy on September 01, 2017, 11:40:41 AM
It was available on YouTube or Hulu or someplace awhile ago . . . I started watching it but got bored and turned it off. The only good thing I can think to say about it is that it seemed better than Two Men in Manhattan.

you don't like Two Men in Manhattan?


Title: Re: Jean-Pierre Melville
Post by: stanton on September 01, 2017, 12:38:36 PM
I have watched L'aîné des Ferchaux about 3 times, without liking it very much. I also never understood why Melville made it, what made him interested in the stuff.

And ... ohh ... Magnet of Doom? Really?


Title: Re: Jean-Pierre Melville
Post by: cigar joe on September 01, 2017, 01:42:57 PM
you don't like Two Men in Manhattan?

Ditto???


Title: Re: Jean-Pierre Melville
Post by: drinkanddestroy on September 01, 2017, 02:13:48 PM
I have watched L'aîné des Ferchaux about 3 times, without liking it very much. I also never understood why Melville made it, what made him interested in the stuff.

And ... ohh ... Magnet of Doom? Really?

How/where did you see it?

Yeah, Melville made some movies that you may call un-Melvillian. "When You Read This Letter" probably most of all. But I haven't yet seen "Magnet of Doom."

I found "Les Enfants Terribles" excruciating. And, btw, Melville the Resister made that movie based on a book by Nazi collaborator Jean Cocteau.


Title: Re: Jean-Pierre Melville
Post by: stanton on September 01, 2017, 02:52:18 PM
How/where did you see it?


It was several times on German TV. And there is also a DVD available (German and French audio with German subs), albeit one of lesser quality and not in the correct aspect ratio (1,78:1 instead of 2,35:1). 


Title: Re: Jean-Pierre Melville
Post by: drinkanddestroy on October 14, 2017, 05:47:10 PM
New BRD of Le Samourai

http://www.dvdbeaver.com/film6/blu-ray_reviews_79/le_samourai_blu-ray.htm

The screencaps look like Criterion (again!) darkened the image. I don’t know how it will look on my 42” TV, but based on viewing these screencap comparisons on my iPhone, I don’t see a reason to get the Blu-ray. The bonus features are all the same from the DVD except one new 23-minute documentary about the collaboration between Melville and Delon.

The price isn’t bad - the Amazon.com pre-order is currently $25.99. Of course Beaver says the BRD is an upgrade - he always does. I’m not sure if I should double-dip on this one ........


Title: Re: Jean-Pierre Melville
Post by: dave jenkins on October 17, 2017, 02:27:39 PM
I saw this posted on the criterionforum.org board, what purports to be subtitle info of the SC box set from France:
Quote
From a DVD Classik member :
Le silence de la mer: French SDH
Les enfants terribles (awful DVD): No subs
Quand tu liras cette lettre: French SDH + Eng
Bob le flambeur: French SDH + Eng
Deux hommes dans Manhattan: French SDH
Léon Morin, prêtre: French SDH + Eng + German
Le doulos : French SDH + Eng + German
Le samouraï : French SDH
L'armée des ombres: French SDH + Eng + German
Le cercle rouge: French SDH + Eng + German
Un flic: French SDH + Eng + German
24h de la vie d'un clown: French SDH + Eng + German
The only real disappointment here is Le samourai, but one can always get the coming Criterion release.


Title: Re: Jean-Pierre Melville
Post by: drinkanddestroy on October 27, 2017, 02:15:32 AM

Release date for the 6-BRD British boxset is listed as December 4th. Can't wait!

I just did the pre-order. Although it's listed on Amazon.co.uk as 69.99 pounds, when I actually go through the steps to make the order, it says that the price is just 58.33 pounds, plus 3.08 pounds shipping and handling to USA. So total is 61.41 pounds. At the current exchange rate, that comes out to $79.19; but of course, the conversion won't be made my card is charged around the release date. So, I am rooting for the dollar to strengthen against the pound over the next few months  ;)

-- For those who want the 12-disc French boxset, pre-sale is available here https://goo.gl/F4ACK2 The boxset will be available October 17th. Cost right now is 119.99 euros for BRD boxset, and 99.99 euros for DVD boxset. Note, however, that according to blu-ray.com, even the BRD boxset has 2 films on DVD; only 10 of the films are BRD's. Also, don't assume that the French boxset will have English subtitles; before purchasing, make sure that it does.

-- There is further discussion of these boxsets at http://forum.blu-ray.com/showthread.php?t=294278


Has anyone purchased the 12-disc French boxset? It was released 10 days ago ...

Release date for the 6-disc British boxset (which I have pre-ordered) has been moved back a week, to December 11. Price has dropped to 50 pounds!


Title: Re: Jean-Pierre Melville
Post by: dave jenkins on October 27, 2017, 02:10:01 PM
Just got a French copy of the When You Read This Letter blu. That makes it unnecessary for me to buy the French box set; I can buy the UK set and get everything I don't already have on blu on that (that I want). So that's the way I'm gonna go (I sure hope Leon Morin is the longer cut, but I'm pretty sure it is).


Title: Re: Jean-Pierre Melville
Post by: drinkanddestroy on December 10, 2017, 01:01:14 AM
My card was charged for the 6-disc British boxset. Including shipping to USA, it's 44.75 pounds (around $60). Should arrive Dec. 19-23.

Update: they say now it'll arrive January 2. Can they really predict the delivery, to the day, from UK to USA? We'll find out ...