Two Classic Robert Bresson Films Heading to Blu-ray
Posted December 28, 2012 04:12 PM by Webmaster
Independent British distributors Artificial Eye have informed us that they are planning to release on Blu-ray two films by acclaimed French filmmaker Robert Bresson: Au Hasard Balthazar (1966), starring Anne Wiazemsky, Walter Green and François Lafarge, and Mouchette (1967), starring Nadine Nortier, Jean-Claude Guilbert and Marie Cardinal. Both films will street on April 1.
The exact supplemental features to be included with each release are yet to be finalized.
Mouchette is one of Robert Bresson's greatest cinematic achievements, plumbing immense emotional depths in a searing, heartbreaking portrait of human frailty. Hemmed in by a dying mother, an alcoholic father and a baby brother in need of care, the adolescent Mouchette searches for sanctuary in nature and domestic chores. As the delicate intricacies of her life are played out a touching, tender and tragic portrait is painted, making her of one of cinema s most memorable tragic heroines. An essential piece of classic French filmmaking.
Au Hasard Balthazar
A profound masterpiece from one of the most revered filmmakers in the history of cinema, director Robert Bresson's Au Hasard Balthazar follows the donkey Balthazar as his passed from owner to owner, some kind and some cruel, but all with motivations beyond his understanding. Balthazar, whose life parallels that of his first keeper, Marie, is truly a beast of burden, suffering the the sins of man. But despite his powerlessness, he accepts his fate nobly. Through Bresson's unconventional approach to composition, sound and narrative, this seemingly simple story becomes a moving parable pf purity and transcendence.
Don't know about others but Mouchette is somehow the least of Bressons films in my book. Bresson was great because of Bresson, he had his own style and his own array of themes. Both the style and theme of Mouchette are of other New Wave Directors, Bressons Contemporeries like Godard or Italian Neorealists, just filmed with a Bressonesque touch. Mouchette to is not only not the best Bresson film, in essence it's barely a Bresson film. I'm still waiting for his masterpiece, Pickpocket, which Ipm sure will look stunning on blu-ray, here's to Criterion.
Sigh - didn't it say on here a few months ago that Artificial Eye was releasing AHB (and perhaps also Mouchette, I can't remember) as DVD only at the end of this year? I promptly bought AHB and Mouchette on DVD from Criterion thinking there would be no Blu-ray release in the near future. I'm happy to get them on Blu next year, but not so impressed with the seemingly rubbish information politics of Artifical Eye...