September 15, 1906 –- February 21, 1960
“During the making of La Grande Illusion [Becker and I] had decided to live together. The affection between us went far beyond the bounds of a normal friendship, so much so indeed that had it not been for our physical aspect ill-intentioned minds might have suspected a relationship of quite another kind. And why not? I am a firm believer in loving friendships in which there is no sexual element. The relationship between Rauffenstein and Boieldieu in La Grande Illusion was simply a love story. Our friendship was to last eight years until we were separated by the Second World War. When I returned to France, Jacques Becker had become a leading film director in his own right. He followed his line as I followed mine. His film Casque d’Or remains one of the masterpieces of the screen.”
— Jean Renoir
September 15, 1894 –- February 12, 1979
“A picture must not be the work only of an author or of actors and technicians; it must be also the work of the audience. The audience makes the picture, as well as the authors; and it seems to be strange because you could ask me how the audience can make a picture which is already shot, done, printed. Well, a picture is different with every type of audience, and if you have a good audience, the picture is better. It is a mystery, but we are surrounded by mysteries… I have nothing against that. I believe in it.”
Sight & Sound Critics’ Poll 2012
- Vertigo (dir. Alfred Hitchcock)
- Citizen Kane (dir. Orson Welles)
- Tokyo Story (dir. Yasujiro Ozu)
- The Rules of the Game (dir. Jean Renoir)
- Sunrise: A Song of Two Humans (dir. F.W. Murnau)
- 2001: A Space Odyssey (dir. Stanley Kubrick)
- The Searchers (dir. John Ford)
- Man with a Movie Camera (dir. Dziga Vertov)
- The Passion of Joan of Arc (dir. Carl Th. Dreyer)
- 8½ (dir. Federico Fellini)
And the loser is – Citizen Kane. After 50 years at the top of the Sight & Sound poll, Orson Welles’s debut film has been convincingly ousted by Alfred Hitchcock’s 45th feature Vertigo – and by a whopping 34 votes, compared with the mere five that separated them a decade ago. So what does it mean? Given that Kane actually clocked over three times as many votes this year as it did last time, it hasn’t exactly been snubbed by the vastly larger number of voters taking part in this new poll, which has spread its net far wider than any of its six predecessors. [More…, x]
Jean Renoir with Marcel Pagnol, Françoise Arnoul, and Jacqueline Pagnol at the 1955 Cannes Film Festival.
On the set of Partie de campagne.
Partie de campagne // dir. Jean Renoir
François Truffaut and Jean Renoir on the set of Le déjeuner sur l’herbe. 1959.
“A director only makes one film in his life. Then he breaks it into pieces and makes it again.”
Jean Renoir, born 117 years ago today.