Over the course of a nearly forty-year career, Louis Malle
forged a reputation as one of the world's most versatile cinematic storytellers, with such widely acclaimed, and wide-ranging, masterpieces as Elevator to the Gallows, My Dinner with Andre
, and Au revoir les enfants
. At the same time, however, with less fanfare, Malle was creating a parallel, even more personal body of work as a documentary filmmaker. With the discerning eye of a true artist and the investigatory skills of a great journalist, Malle takes us from his French homeland to India to the United States, in some of the most engaging and fascinating nonfiction films ever made.
Six-Disc Set Includes:
Vive Le Tour; Humain, Trop Humain; Place de la Republique: An energetic evocation of the Tour de France, a meditative investigation of the inner workings of a French automotive plant, and an entertaining snapshot of the comings and goings on one street corner in Paris - Louis Malle's three French-set documentaries reveal, in an eclectic array of ways, the director's eternal facination with and respect for, the everyday lives of everyday people.
Phantom India: Malle called his gorgeous and groundbreaking Phantom India the most personal film of his career. And this extraordinary journey to India, originally shown as a miniseries on European television, is infused with his sense of discovery, as well as occasional outrage, intrigue, and joy.
Calcutta: When he was cutting Phantom India, Malle found that the footage shot in Calcutta was so diverse, intense, and unforgettable that it deserved its own film. The result, released theatrically, is at times shocking - a chaotic portrait of a city engulfed in social and political turmoil, edging ever closer to oblivion.
God's Country: In 1979, Louis Malle traveled into the heart of Minnesota to capture the everyday lives of the men and women in a prosperous farming community. Six years later, during Ronald Reagan's second term, he returned to find drastic economic decline. Free of stereotypes about America's "heartland," God's Country, commissioned for American public television, is a stunning work of emotional and political clarity.
...And the Pursuit of Happiness: In 1986, Malle, himself a transplant in the United States, set out to investigate the ever widening range of immigrant experience in America. Interviewing a variety of newcomers (from teachers to astronauts to doctors) in middle-and working-class communities from coast to coast, Malle paints a generous, humane portrait of their individual struggles in an increasingly polyglot nation.