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La Jetee / Sans Soleil (Criterion Collection) (1982)

Cast: Alexandra Stewart, Alexandra Stewart
Director: Chris Marker, Chris Marker
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Studio: Criterion
Genre: Documentary, Foreign, Science Fiction , France, Short Films, Experimental/Avant-Garde, Criterion Collection
Running Time: 130 min.
Languages: English, French
Subtitles: English
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Synopsis
Titled after a song cycle by Mussorgsky, Sans Soleil is a 1982 nonlinear essay film by elusive documentary filmmaker Chris Marker. It's a collage of images gathered from Japan, Africa, Iceland, San Francisco, and France -- all presented without direct sound. The soundtrack consists of occasional spells of electronic music while an unseen woman's voice (Alexandra Stewart) narrates letters written by a possibly fictional traveler in poetic verse. Beginning with the phrase "He wrote me," each segment explores some philosophical inquiry of matters as broad as modern culture, technology, consciousness, Japanese television, and even the act of filming itself. Some of the first images include children in Iceland, a ferry in Hokkido, a carnival in Guinea-Bissau, girls in Cape Verde, and a shrine to cats in Tokyo. There's also a creepy JFK robot, petrified animals left by desert drought, and teenagers dancing in a public square. The seemingly miscellaneous footage is made up of archive clips, synthesized video sequences, and some images collected by Marker's colleagues. It's randomly assembled, jumping from one continent to another in the same breath. It remains one of the director's masterpiece accomplishments. ~ Andrea LeVasseur, All Movie Guide

GreenCine Member Reviews

am I on drugs? this is good drugs! by criticalmv July 23, 2008 - 11:23 AM PDT
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4 out of 5 members found this review helpful
banality my ass... If you like a french bent on existence coupled with scenes of the ordinary that are sometimes so beautiful you can't stand it, rent. If you like a linear narrative and three act storytelling, don't rent. Sans Soleil makes me want to be part of the world again, excited to be human, when's the last time you felt that? I long to maintain this mood.




GreenCine Member Rating
12345678910

(Average 8.85)
55 Votes
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something like documentary
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personal, experimental, and beautiful films that (i think) smartly challenge the conventions of documentary
charfair
Village Voice's 100 Best Films of the 20th Century
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When the Village Voice held its "First Annual Film Critics' Poll" they asked 50 or so film critics (like Molly Haskell, Jonathan Rosenbaum, and Andrew Sarris) to rank their top ten best films of the century. This is the result.
etaviotal

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