Sunday, February 10, 2008

Children of Paradise (Les Enfants du Paradis)

Marcel Carnes's Children of Paradise (Les Enfants du Paradis) (1945) is a miracle of film-making, created under the most extreme circumstances of Nazi occupation and political and economic stresses, but appearing a light and perfect as a wedding cake. Every element of the film combines to create an artistic whole, although Carne had to create two films because of Nazi edict. I've put the Criterion DVD set on my wish list, and can hardly wait to see all the wonderful extras and the brilliant clean copy they are able to offer. This film has been lauded as the best of French film, as well as the best film of all time. I'm not qualified to make such a judgement, but many scenes are unforgettable, and it is completely engrossing. I intended to watch only the first half last night, but couldn't resist the second reel!

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