Wednesday, August 05, 2009

A Man Escaped

A Man Escaped is a 1956 Robert Bresson film based on a true story of the escape of a French Resistance fighter from a WWII prison camp. It's on the list of 100 most spiritually significant films.

This seems to be out of print -at least, I can't find a DVD of it anywhere- but youtube has it up in segments. part 1:
part 2, part 3, part 4, part 5, part 6, part 7, part 8, part 9 [these videos have been deleted]


The New York Times says this film is evidence that the director "is an extraordinary artist in his realm" who "makes his pictures with patience, simplicity and the uncompromising devotion of a saint." Senses of Cinema has a lengthy summary. Images Journal (also at Bright Lights Film Journal) says the film "is typical of Bresson's work in creating highly emotional effects by juxtaposing seemingly oppositional images and motifs." says it "offers newcomers to Bresson perhaps the most accessible point of entry into the work of this brilliant, challenging, God-haunted artist." Christianity Today says, "it can be a remarkably powerful experience the first time you view it, its suspense gradually building to excruciating intensity". Slant Magazine says,
The genius of the film is obvious from the start: The way Bresson breathlessly postures Devigny's autobiographical account as a modern spiritual fable and the intensely suffocating aesthetic that truly evokes the squashing of the human soul.

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