woensdag, 14 februari
La Belle Et La Bete 1946
Directed by Jean Cocteau
In French with English subtitles
Jean Cocteau's haunting adaption of the classic fairy-tale "Beauty and the Beast" penned by Madame Leprince de Beaumont is certainly one of the most beautiful films ever made, and is a necessary antidote to that sanitized phenomenon that we know as Disney (and Barbie). Today cinema has been dumbed down to the level that a ten-year old can easily understand it both in form and content. But cinema used to be exactly the opposite—it was a daring art form, and even when dealing with things like fairy-tales they were done with style, grace, intelligence and depth. This film remains one of the greatest screen adaptations from a literary work in the history of cinema, filled with poetic images that sear into your brain—of flowing curtains, haunting landscapes, poetic surrealism, or eyes that gleam with an unworldliness.
Made in 1946, in the devastation and ruins of WWII, maybe it could only be after a worldwide disaster that a masterpiece of magic and beauty like this could be created out of its ashes. The world war destroyed everybody's everyday life, and forced people to go into directions they otherwise would've never gone. Also with an incredible sense of humanity. Surreal, spellbinding, and visually gorgeous. It stars Cocteau's lover Jean Marais as the beast, and his voice alone will make you melt.
One viewer's reaction:
"This is, in short, what film can do, when it tries. This was made long before computer graphics and the accompanying revolution in special effects, but if any of our modern directors deployed their resources as imaginatively, or as sensitively, as Cocteau did in the 40s, film today might be worth the paper it's printed on. But they don't and it isn't."
Datum & tijd:
- MARIONETTE THEATRE