Tuesday, April 24

New DVD Recommendations from the New York Times' Typist

Critic’s Choice

New DVDs

By DAVE KEHR
Published: April 24, 2007

JEAN RENOIR

3-Disc Collector’s Edition

Disc 3 skips to the later years, with the 1959 television production “Le Testament du Docteur Cordelier” (here called “The Doctor’s Horrible Experiment”), a free-handed interpretation of “Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde” starring the mime Jean-Louis Barrault (“Children of Paradise”).


THE mime Jean-Louis Barrault ("Children of Paradise")! Fer chrissakes, Barrault's turn as Baptiste the mime is one of the fucking transcendent performances in cinema. He directed and acted in the theatre for forty years, running his own highly influential company, and was director of the Théâtre de France before he was removed for siding with the students and workers in the '68 strikes. The mime Jean-Louis Barrault.

Oh, and Kehr also recommends Jane Eyre, largely for the contributions of the radio announcer Orson Welles.

1 comment:

Glenn Kenny said...

No fair, sir. Kehr's description of Barrault as a "mime" IS reductive, but it's intended I think to convey the flavor of Barrault's work in "Cordelier" rather than to function as a summing up of the man's career. This is a review of a bunch of Renoir films, and Kehr chose to use his column inches to fry those particular fish. One glancing reference that ticks you off doesn't, I believe, justify your calling Kehr a typist—in fact his DVD columns and Arts and Leisure pieces speak to cinephilic concerns otherwise undreamt of in the Times' philosophy.