This year’s International Film Festival of Kerala (IFFK 2012) will screen 11 films of French director Alain Resnais under the ‘Retrospective’ category.
The 90-year-old Resnais has proved himself as a director, editor, scriptwriter, cinematographer, and actor. He has also produced documentaries based on films of Pablo Picasso and Paul Gauguin. The 11 films included in the festival are: Muriel, Same Old Song, Last Year at Marienbad, Stavisky, Private fears in Public Spaces, Guernica, Hiroshima Mon Amour, Night and Fog, Statues Also Die, Toute La Memoire Du Monde, and Le Chant Du Styrene.
Hiroshima My Love or Hiroshima Mon Amour was the first feature film of the director. The 90-minute movie is a love story of a French actress who sets out to make a film against war. The film bagged the U.N. Award and the Award for the Best Foreign Actress in the 1959 Cannes Film Festival. In 1960, the French Syndicate of Cinema Critics awarded the movie the Best Film Award, and the Critics Award.
The award for the best film, actress, sound-mixing and script was received for the 1977 film Same Old Song. The musical comedy deals with the life of six people who are inter-related in Paris.
The theme of memory loss owing to old age, stubbornness of men, and the attitude of women who violate their promise are the themes of the film Last Year at Marienbad. It won the award for the Best Director and the Best Actress award at the 2006 Venice Film Festival.
The film Muriel revolves around a mother, her step-son, and a girl of the same name as the film. The title of the film is translated as ‘The Time of a Return.’
Night and Fog explicitly portrays the Nazi exodus. Made in 1955, the film includes real footage of the horrors of the concentration camps of Hitler and is considered the best documentary on Nazi Germany.
Mr. Resnais and Chris Marker’s Statues Also Die is a political picturising of France’s conquest of Africa. Due to its critique of France, it was banned until the 1960s.
The 19-minute film Le Chant Du Styrene is on the modern processes involved in the manufacturing of plastic. The film employs the latest technology in shooting and editing.
Guernica was a film inspired by Pablo Picasso’s painting of Guernica being bombed by the German army. It was also inspired by other paintings of the time. The film explains Resnais’s stand on war. It was also titled ‘The Mystery of Picasso’ and won the Special Jury Award at Cannes Film Festival in 1956.
Toute La Memoire Du Monde was made in the year 1956 and is on the prestigious National Library of France. The film is claimed to be the best made historical documentary on the National Library.
The film Stavisky is a crime drama movie on a financier in the 1930s. Due to the scandals associated with him, the whole political standing in France is changed. Jean-Paul Belmonde stars as Stavisky. The film won the Top Foreign Film Award instituted by the National Board of Reviews in 1975.
Seven people made lonely in different situations form the theme of the film Private Fears in Public Space. The film was shortlisted as the Best Film by the French Syndicate of Cinema Critics in 2007.
All the 11 movies of the director are hoped to bring about a closer and deeper understanding of the French movie industry and its directors.