XIXAX Film Forum

The Director's Chair => The Director's Chair => Topic started by: ono on November 28, 2005, 04:56:17 AM

Title: Jean-Pierre & Luc Dardenne (Le Fils [The Son], L'Enfant, etc.)
Post by: ono on November 28, 2005, 04:56:17 AM
I watched The Son after reading GT drool about it sometime ago, and Ebert drool about it as well (although who knows if that was just from the stroke).  My reaction is, "So?"  I've gone back to get the reactions again, from both Ebert and GT.  I always like hearing about films from people like GT, and pete, and 03 that otherwise I'd never hear about, because I'm usually well rewarded.  This time, not so much.  Some good scenes, but so much fat in this film.  You call this good storytelling?  It took over an hour and a half to tell what could've been told in an hour or less.  So I just thought I'd throw this thread up here to get comments on this, and other movies of theirs I should be aware of.
Title: Re: Jean-Pierre & Luc Dardenne (Le Fils [The Son], L'Enfant, etc.)
Post by: Ghostboy on November 28, 2005, 12:47:05 PM
Of their films, I've only seen The Son, and I thought it was absolutely outstanding, with not an ounce of fat on it. However, I'm on the way out the door and will have to defend it further later on today...
Title: Re: Jean-Pierre & Luc Dardenne (Le Fils [The Son], L'Enfant, etc.)
Post by: Gold Trumpet on November 28, 2005, 02:06:01 PM
I can't respond adaquately right now either. Until tomorrow night, I am booked of time with an exam paper. Expect a very large reply.
Title: Re: Jean-Pierre & Luc Dardenne (Le Fils [The Son], L'Enfant, etc.)
Post by: Pubrick on November 28, 2005, 07:47:26 PM
i have to go now. i'll be back later to leave again..
Title: Re: Jean-Pierre & Luc Dardenne (Le Fils [The Son], L'Enfant, etc.)
Post by: w/o horse on November 29, 2005, 12:49:47 PM
There's this part towards the beginning of The Son in which the camera is following Olivier, we don't know who Francis is yet or why he will be important to the story, but the camera is following Olivier and he turns around and looks back and his face tells you what the story will be and how it will end.

I can't get that face out of my head.
Title: Re: Jean-Pierre & Luc Dardenne (Le Fils [The Son], L'Enfant, etc.)
Post by: pete on November 29, 2005, 07:37:00 PM
.  My reaction is, "So?"  I've gone back to get the reactions again, from both Ebert and GT.  I always like hearing about films from people like GT, and pete, and 03 that otherwise I'd never hear about, because I'm usually well rewarded. 

AW really?  my threads rarely get replies so I thought no one was interested.  I guess I was one person off.
Title: Re: Jean-Pierre & Luc Dardenne (Le Fils [The Son], L'Enfant, etc.)
Post by: Gold Trumpet on November 29, 2005, 08:34:56 PM
.  My reaction is, "So?"  I've gone back to get the reactions again, from both Ebert and GT.  I always like hearing about films from people like GT, and pete, and 03 that otherwise I'd never hear about, because I'm usually well rewarded. 

AW really?  my threads rarely get replies so I thought no one was interested.  I guess I was one person off.

I take that with a grain of salt. Ono cursed me out pretty bad one time that made me assume he thinks everything I say is shit.
Title: Re: Jean-Pierre & Luc Dardenne (Le Fils [The Son], L'Enfant, etc.)
Post by: ono on November 30, 2005, 07:15:11 PM
Haha.  That was 'cause you trashed Eternal Sunshine, if I recall correctly, and did so poorly.  You recanted later on, so all is good.  Besides, it's not a perfect movie.  But, before then, way before then, I said this:  http://xixax.com/index.php?topic=1549.msg37178#msg37178

I don't think everything you say is shit.  Now the way you say it... and where you get some of your opinions... well, that's debatable.  Looking forward to your thoughts on The Son, but I gotta leave for a second first.
Title: Re: Jean-Pierre & Luc Dardenne (Le Fils [The Son], L'Enfant, etc.)
Post by: Gold Trumpet on December 02, 2005, 02:35:24 PM
I watched The Son after reading GT drool about it sometime ago, and Ebert drool about it as well (although who knows if that was just from the stroke).  My reaction is, "So?"  I've gone back to get the reactions again, from both Ebert and GT.  I always like hearing about films from people like GT, and pete, and 03 that otherwise I'd never hear about, because I'm usually well rewarded.  This time, not so much.  Some good scenes, but so much fat in this film.  You call this good storytelling?  It took over an hour and a half to tell what could've been told in an hour or less.  So I just thought I'd throw this thread up here to get comments on this, and other movies of theirs I should be aware of.

Actually, the storytelling of the film is the key. The film does not look to its content as points to relate to the audience. The points are actually of minimal concern. The pattern of the film is the storytelling is its attempt to document the "personal experience." In the first part of the film, as the protoganist shows unkown interest in this boy who is new to the school where he teaches, the beauty is that you don't know why he is following this boy. It isn't the simple matter of keeping the audience guessing, but illustrating the viewpoint really is first person. All films are so thoroughly from the third person point of view we sometimes forget the option is there for another.

All the films by the Dardennes are trying to break the usual conventions of storytelling. If you look at Rosetta, you realize the attempt is even riskier than in The Son. The entire film is just following this girl as she goes from place to place looking for a job and chances to get by. Her emotional anxiety is the film's guideline to how the story will be told. It is by handheld camera and literally 'following' her; the viewpoint at her back much of the time. When she encounters a situation, the camera swings around and gets in the face of the person she is encountering, like the camera is her anger taking over. Hardly does the film really situate itself to a balanced viewpoint or calm feeling. The film, as it tries to be, is an emotionally draining experience. Also, with the film so rooted in this character's anger, the physical nature of the film always feels violent. Funny, the major criticism by fans of the Dardennes is that when the film ends on a final shot of the main character, it looks too 'cinematic'. I actually agee with that.

But, I also feel the Dardennes have not really got to the strength of their talent. The Son was a major progress after Rosetta. It incorporated a larger theme that gave the action a stronger purpose, such as the father finding redemption in the killer of his son. But it is my belief that if the Dardennes continue to push themselves to larger social issues, the results can be even more breathtaking. Their filmmaking is not the attempt to dramaticize through variations of different points by the characters, but to bleed the characters to their core that the larger themes come through. For the past year, I've been obcessed with the novels of Philip Roth. His early work from the 60s and 70s were attempts of confessional realism, to forfeit the novel of a usual plot and render it simply as a man saying everything he has to say if he was speaking. The novels were quite angry, trying also to bleed these characters of everything they were to really understand who they were. The major progression for Roth was in the 90s when he allowed this style to incorporate social issues. His writing gained a new freedom because in the span of just one page, you had the feeling his character could be talking about any social issues as well as personal one. The feeling was his writing was starting to mirror the wild thought process we all have. The high art was that it was truly trying to rectify the human experience on page. When he won a Pulitzer for American Pastoral, the first 40 pages of the book is usual character introduction. Then the rest of the 300 page book is pure anger. The sight of watching a man explode on page as he sees his family destroyed because his 16 year old daughter became a terrorist. Paragraphs hardly matter. The book can go 10 pages sometimes without a single one.

Thing is, Roth never believed in structure or style being the matter of avante garde. He once said he would fail any student who focused on those principles when learning how to write. Roth's writing feels wholly personal and very close to the subject. The Dardennes have a similiar feel as they progress to root out all the superficial corners out of their films in to truly capture their characters. I think they are relating the personal experience as well as any filmmaker ever has. That says a lot because Antonioni achieved amazing things with La Notte. My hope is that the Dardennes continue to progress and try to encapture the whole experience of a man as it roots down to everything he is thinking and feeling. It will be the toughest thing to do, but filmmakers before have captured the "photographed thought."
Title: Re: Jean-Pierre & Luc Dardenne (Le Fils [The Son], L'Enfant, etc.)
Post by: mutinyco on December 02, 2005, 05:40:19 PM
All I have to say is, The Child is pure excruciating.
Title: Re: Jean-Pierre & Luc Dardenne (Le Fils [The Son], L'Enfant, etc.)
Post by: Gold Trumpet on December 02, 2005, 06:33:18 PM
All I have to say is, The Child is pure excruciating.

For you, I'll try to love it as much as possible. It only won the Palme D'Or.
Title: Re: Jean-Pierre & Luc Dardenne (Le Fils [The Son], L'Enfant, etc.)
Post by: mutinyco on December 02, 2005, 06:44:46 PM
So did Fahrenheit 9/11. What's your point?
Title: Re: Jean-Pierre & Luc Dardenne (Le Fils [The Son], L'Enfant, etc.)
Post by: Gold Trumpet on December 02, 2005, 06:51:09 PM
So did Fahrenheit 9/11. What's your point?


:)
Title: Re: Jean-Pierre & Luc Dardenne (Le Fils [The Son], L'Enfant, etc.)
Post by: SoNowThen on March 08, 2006, 08:04:34 AM
Funny, the major criticism by fans of the Dardennes is that when the film ends on a final shot of the main character, it looks too 'cinematic'. I actually agee with that.

But that was planned, and worked perfect, imo. They said that it was the first time in the film that Rosetta actually "saw" someone else. So if Cinema is "the Gaze", then this act of finally "seeing" should be done in a cinematic fashion.

Anyway, that movie was incredible. Glad you're a fan of these guys, GT. As to this ending, what it achieves as an ending... one of those perfect times to end a film, and they did it. Ballsy, it might seem on first glance, but then obvious (in the right way) when you think about it. Would be silly of fans to criticize this moment, but of course, stodgy "fans" of realism always did hate it when a filmmaker used his right to be a bit magical. They should be happy; the Dardennes seem to be taking everything Bresson talked about, but not situating it in his stiff ascetic world, but an almost perfect doc-type recording of a situation (which should, in theory, make it more accessible to the movie-going public). Quite an interesting achievement...

Oh, also, just to comment on the last few posts: the Dardennes did a hilarious interview where they trashed the shit out of Farenheit 9/11, and said "we don't like manipulative propaganda"... hehehe, wonderful...
Title: Re: Jean-Pierre & Luc Dardenne (Le Fils [The Son], L'Enfant, etc.)
Post by: Gold Trumpet on March 08, 2006, 01:03:09 PM
Maybe I did put too much importance on one shot of the film, but I stand by that comment. The shot does not destroy the film, but its important to note because the Dardennes never tried a shot like that again. Their films have diligently avvoided a "cinematic" touch.

On the other hand, I recently watched "A Short Film About Killing". I saw the fantasia elements of Kieslowski's 90s films done to a documentary realism. That collision destroyed the film for me.
Title: Re: Jean-Pierre & Luc Dardenne (Le Fils [The Son], L'Enfant, etc.)
Post by: godardian on September 26, 2006, 01:03:10 PM
I watched L'Enfant last month, The Son last night. I am in love with the Dardennes; they are the most expertly Bressonian of contemporary directors that I know of. I hope to dig into their back catalog over Xmas break, if not sooner. (Fall quarter started this week for me, which past experience tells me means very limited movie time for the next three months.)
Title: Re: Jean-Pierre & Luc Dardenne (Le Fils [The Son], L'Enfant, etc.)
Post by: wilder on February 25, 2013, 04:21:00 PM
Marion Cotillard To Star In New Dardenne Brothers Film 'Deux Jours, Une Nuit'
via The Playlist

Though known for their personal, intimate and raw dramas, which often feature lesser known or unknown talent, when we spoke to the Dardenne brothers last spring, they acknowledged that big Hollywood names had approached them to star in their films. "We can't say who in particular, because we may work with them, we don't know. It's up to them to say," Luc Dardenne stated. And whether or not Marion Cotillard came to them first or the other way around, this is nonetheless a massively exciting development.
The Oscar winning actress will lead "Deux Jours, Une Nuit" ("Two Days, One Night"), the new film by the Dardennes. Penned by the pair (natch), the story will center on Sandra who, with the help of her husband (Fabrizio Rongione -- "Rosetta," "The Kid With the Bike"), has one week to convince her work colleagues to turn down their bonuses so she can keep her job. It sounds like a very thematically timely effort from the directing duo, and a great role for Cotillard. And while the actress is definitely the biggest star the Dardennes have ever had in one of their films, it also feels like a very natural fit, so it's a nice transition for what easily could be their biggest exposure to date.

Production is slated to begin this summer in Belgium, so we'll just go ahead and place on this on the Cannes Film Festival slate for 2014.
Title: Re: Jean-Pierre & Luc Dardenne (Le Fils [The Son], L'Enfant, etc.)
Post by: Gold Trumpet on February 25, 2013, 11:36:42 PM
Good news. When I saw the headline, I feared a more commercial venture looming. As far as the basic synopsis eye can see, this project should still keep them well within their realm.
Title: Re: Jean-Pierre & Luc Dardenne (Le Fils [The Son], L'Enfant, etc.)
Post by: Pubrick on February 26, 2013, 05:25:16 AM
yeah, god forbid they actually make some money for once in their lives.
Title: Re: Jean-Pierre & Luc Dardenne (Le Fils [The Son], L'Enfant, etc.)
Post by: wilder on April 23, 2015, 04:47:30 PM
César Winner Adèle Haenel To Lead Dardenne Brothers Next Film 'The Unknown Girl'
via The Playlist

(http://i.imgur.com/cDKMUaq.jpg)

Jean-Pierre and Luc Dardenne went with established Oscar-winner Marion Cotillard to lead their last movie, "Two Days, One Night," and the filmmakers aren't done snagging top talent. She may not be a huge name yet, but Adèle Haenel is already a two time César Award winner, taking back-to-back trophies in 2014 for Best Supporting Actress in "Suzanne (http://xixax.com/index.php?topic=12786.msg329722#msg329722)" and this year for Best Actress for "Love At First Fight." And she'll feature in what may be her biggest movie yet.

Production company Les Films Du Fleuve has announced that the sibling directors have tapped Haenel to lead their next film, "La fille Inconnue" ("The Unknown Girl"). She'll take the role of Jenny, a young doctor who feels guilty after a young woman she refused to see winds up dead a few days later. She then decides to find out who the girl was, after the police can't identify the young woman.
Title: Re: Jean-Pierre & Luc Dardenne (Le Fils [The Son], L'Enfant, etc.)
Post by: wilder on August 15, 2017, 01:59:33 AM
The Dardenne Brothers' 79 Favorite Movies
via nofilmschool

“Police,” Maurice Pialat (1984)
“Under the Sun of Satan,” Maurice Pialat (1987)
“Graduate First,” Maurice Pialat (1978)
“Loulou,” Maurice Pialat (1980)
“A Woman Under the Influence,” John Cassavetes (1974)
“Opening Night,” John Cassavetes (1977)
“The Killing of a Chinese Bookie,” John Cassavetes (1976)
“Mouchette,” Robert Bresson (1966)
“Au hasard Balthazar,” Robert Bresson (1965)
“A Man Escaped,” Robert Bresson (1956)
“Paisa,” Roberto Rossellini (1946)
“L’Amore,” Roberto Rossellini (1947)
“Germany, Year Zero,” Roberto Rossellini (1947)
“Europe 51,” Roberto Rossellini (1951)
“Stromboli,” Roberto Rossellini (1949)
“The Flowers of St. Francis,” Roberto Rossellini (1950)
“Voyage in Italy,” Roberto Rossellini (1953)
“Accattone,” Pier Paolo Pasolini (1961)
“Ro.Go.Pa.G.,” Jean-Luc Godard, Ugo Gregoretti, Pier Paolo Pasolini, Roberto Rossellini (1963)
“The Gospel According to St. Matthew,” Pier Paolo Pasolini (1964)
“Filmmaker’s Holiday,” Johan van der Keuken (1974)
“The Flat Jungle,” Johan van der Keuken (1978)
“Street of Shame,” Kenji Mizoguchi (1956)
“Sansho the Bailiff,” Kenji Mizoguchi (1954)
“Cruel Story of Youth,” Nagisa Oshima (1960)
“Boy,” Nagisa Oshima (1969)
“High and Low,” Akira Kurosawa (1963)
“Red Beard,” Akira Kurosawa (1965)
“To Live,” Akira Kurosawa (1952)
“Hands Over the City,” Francesco Rosi (1963)
“The Tarnished Angels,” Douglas Sirk (1957)
“Sobibór, October 14, 1943, 4 p.m.,” Claude Lanzmann (2000)
“Cleo from 5 to 7,” Agnès Varda (1961)
“Father and Master,” Paolo et Vittorio Taviani (1976)
“The Flavor of Green Tea over Rice,” Yasujirō Ozu (1952)
“There Was a Father,” Yasujirō Ozu (1942)
“La Strada,” Federico Fellini (1954)
“Nights of Cabiria,” Federico Fellini (1957)
“Dekalog,” Krzysztof Kieslowski (1989)
“Life, and Nothing More….,” Abbas Kiarostami (1991)
“Where Is the Friend’s Home?” Abbas Kiarostami (1987)
“High Hopes,” Mike Leigh (1988)
“Riff-Raff,” Ken Loach (1991)
“Northern Lights,” John Hanson and Rob Nilsson (1978)
“Naked Hearts,” Édouard Luntz (1966)
“The Visitors,” Elia Kazan (1971)
“Wanda,” Barbara Loden (1970)
“Sunrise,” F.W. Murnau (1927)
“M,” Fritz Lang (1931)
“The Kid,” Charlie Chaplin (1919)
“Modern Times,” Charlie Chaplin (1935)
“The Life of Oharu,”  Kenji Mizoguchi (1952)
“Herman Slobbe/Blind Child 2,” Johan van der Keuken (1966)
“The Wild Child,” François Truffaut (1969)
“The 400 Blows,” François Truffaut (1958)
“Dear Diary,” Nanni Moretti (1993)
“Drifting Clouds,” Aki Kaurismäki (1996)
“Naked Childhood,” Maurice Pialat (1967)
“Through the Olive Trees,” Abbas Kiarostami (1994)
“The Band Wagon,” Vincente Minneli (1953)
“It’s a Wonderful Life,” Frank Capra (1946)
“Taxi Driver,” Martin Scorsese (1975)
“Shoah,” Claude Lanzmann (1985)
“Le Boucher,” Claude Chabrol (1970)
“Gentleman Jim,” Raoul Walsh (1942)
“College,”  Buster Keaton and James W. Horne (1927)
“Summer With Monika,” Ingmar Bergman (1952)
“Bring of Life,” Ingmar Bergman (1957)
“Interiors,” Woody Allen (1977)
“Crimes and Misdemeanors,” Woody Allen (1988)
“Pather Panchali,” Satyajit Ray (1955)
“My Childhood,” Bill Douglas (1972)
“Ce gamin, là,” Renaud Victor (1975)
“Shadow of a Doubt,” Alfred Hitchcock (1942)
“Kes,” Ken Loach (1969)
“Raining Stones,” Ken Loach (1993)
“Ivan’s Childhood,” Andrei Tarkovsky (1962)
“Rome Open City,” Roberto Rossellini (1945)
“The Man From Laramie,” Anthony Mann (1954)