Black & White
Subtitles: English, English for the hearing impaired
Published/distributed by BFI
(Including VAT at 20%)
Paris Nous Appartient: RRP 19.99
Following its release on a new print by BFI Distribution in April 2006, during the NFT's major Jacques Rivette retrospective, the BFI releases Paris Nous Appartient, the remarkable first feature from the great cinematic visionary and probably least known of the major French New Wave directors.
Anne, a student in Paris, becomes involved with a group of her brother's arty friends and gets sucked into a mystery involving Philip, an expatriate American escaping McCarthyism; Terry, a self-destructive femme fatale; theatre director Gerard; and Juan, a Spanish activist who apparently committed suicide, but was he murdered? Philip warns Anne that the forces that killed Juan will soon do the same to Gerard, who is struggling to rehearse Shakespeare's Pericles. Anne takes a part in the play in an attempt to help him and also discover why Juan died.
Jacques Rivette started making his first feature in 1957 and completed it slowly over a period of two years, as money allowed. Finally released in 1961, Paris nous appartient brilliantly captured the mood of paranoia and uncertainty of that Cold War period. Rivette's rarely seen debut is one of the most important and far-reaching of the early New Wave films.
Rivette's disquieting film, suffused with sexual and political tension, is as much about its setting a long-vanished Paris full of fleabag hotels and corduroy-clad intellectuals as about its story. It features guest appearances from fellow New Waver directors Claude Chabrol, Jean-Luc Godard and Jacques Demy, a striking musique concrte score, and stunning cinematography in black and white, which manages to be luminous and ominous at the same time.
Extras* New filmed introduction by Jonathan Romney on Rivette and Paris Nous Appartient
* Le Coup du Berger (Rivette, 1957, 27 mins, English subtitles)
* Illustrated booklet with a review by Tom Milne; feature by Louis Marcorelles, originally published in Sight & Sound; director biography