It used to be that we saw movies only when they were current in the theaters, with a few add-ons like a college Bogart festival, or specialized trove at an art theater or Cinemateque, or the phased return of popular chestnuts like Gone with the Wind or Snow White. But now with 80,000 titles on Netflix, and movies on request soon to spill directly into our home TV or computer, where to begin?? So many, many options and titles!
I propose that we Demos members post targeted lists of favorites. If you recognize and love several selections from a cluster, probably a mutual sensibility obtains, and the other choices point to good bets too. Titles and a few evocative bits suffice; there are plenty of full reviews and treatises on line.
- LíAtalante (Jean Vigo, 1934)
| Who can forget the small town guests marching the newlyweds to the barge, the lure of away and romance, fat Jules, the Parisian magician, the longing of the dream sequence. |
- Children of Paradise (Marcel Carné, 1945)
| The stunningly lush opening camera shot wends its way slowly through a French street carnival world to meet the heart rending mime Jean-Louis Barrault, luminous leading lady Arletty, the count, the confidence man. |
- Fanny Trilogy (Marcel Pagnol, 1931)
| Earthy, evocative, exquisitely nuanced, Pagnolís stable of local actors bring to life the longing, warmth and petty color of old Marseilles. |
- The Bakerís Wife (Marcel Pagnol, 1938)
| Only in France would a whole town grind to a standstill because the bakerís wife abandons him and, heartbroken he can no longer turn out the staff of life. She must be found. |
- Casque díOr (Jacques Becker, 1952)
| I love the fragrant, idyllic country cottage where the lovers Simone Signoret and Serge Reggiani tryst. |
- Cyrano de Bergerac (Jean-Paul Rappeneau, 1990)
| More recent than the others, but exquisite period drama. Depardieu plays with great tenderness and panache. Iím always moved to tears at the end. |