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Chronicle of a Summer (Criterion Collection) [Blu-ray] (1961)

Marceline Loridan , Mary Lou Parolini , Jean Rouch , Edgar Morin  |  NR |  Blu-ray
4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (5 customer reviews)

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Product Details

  • Actors: Marceline Loridan, Mary Lou Parolini
  • Directors: Jean Rouch, Edgar Morin
  • Format: Multiple Formats, Blu-ray, NTSC, Widescreen
  • Language: French
  • Subtitles: English
  • Region: Region A/1 (Read more about DVD/Blu-ray formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.77:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: NR (Not Rated)
  • Studio: Criterion Collection
  • DVD Release Date: February 26, 2013
  • Run Time: 91 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (5 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B00A8QDI8C
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #177,539 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)

Special Features

  • New high-definition digital transfer of the Cineteca di Bologna restoration of the film, with uncompressed monaural soundtrack on the Blu-ray edition
  • Un été + 50 (2011), a seventy-three-minute documentary featuring outtakes and new interviews with codirector Edgar Morin and some of the film’s subjects
  • Archival interviews with codirector Jean Rouch and Marceline Loridan, one of the film’s subjects
  • New interview with anthropology professor Faye Ginsburg, organizer of several Rouch retrospectives
  • New and improved English subtitle translation
  • PLUS: A booklet featuring an essay by scholar Sam Di Iorio

  • Editorial Reviews

    Few films can claim to be as influential to the course of cinema history as Chronicle of a Summer. The fascinating result of a collaboration between filmmaker-anthropologist Jean Rouch (Moi, un noir) and sociologist Edgar Morin, this vanguard work of what Morin would term cinéma verité is a brilliantly conceived and realized sociopolitical diagnosis of the early sixties in France. By simply interviewing a group of Paris residents in the summer of 1960—beginning with the provocative and eternal question “Are you happy?” and expanding to political issues, including the ongoing Algerian War—Rouch and Morin reveal the hopes and dreams of a wide array of people, from artists to factory workers, from an Italian émigré to an African student. Chronicle of a Summer’s penetrative approach gives us a document of a time and place with extraordinary emotional depth.

    Customer Reviews

    4.8 out of 5 stars
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    Most Helpful Customer Reviews
    10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
    4.0 out of 5 stars Inventing Cinema Verite February 27, 2013
    Format:Blu-ray|Verified Purchase
    Perhaps few other films are as important to our current cultural moment of reality tv shows as "Chronicle of a Summer." Chronicle of a Summer explicitly asks the audience to consider if it is possible to for people act sincerely in front of a camera.

    The film is comprised of a series of interviews, often grabbing people off the streets and asking them "if they are happy." The interviewees often discuss politics, philosophy and war. In itself, the interviews are a fascinating slice of culture. But the filmmakers then add a fascinating layer to the film by having the subjects watch the video and make commentary on it.

    As you might guess, this meta-film is the stuff of film studies classes. Chronicle of a Summer is credited with heralding a cinema verite movement. Viewers with an interest in film studies and history will be most rewarded by this blu ray.

    I always appreciate Criterion's editions because they allow those of us not currently in school to continue learning. The essay/booklet in particular helps with understanding the many ways that this film is "important."

    The Criterion edition features:
    ---New 2K digital master from the 2011 Cineteca di Bologna restoration, with uncompressed monaural soundtrack
    ---"Un été + 50" (2011), a seventy-five-minute documentary featuring outtakes from the film, along with new interviews with codirector Edgar Morin and some of the film's participants
    ---Archival interviews with codirector Jean Rouch and Marceline Loridan, one of the film's participants
    ---New interview with anthropology professor Faye Ginsburg, the organizer of several Rouch retrospectives
    ---New English subtitle translation
    ---PLUS: A booklet featuring an essay by scholar Sam Di Iorio
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    1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
    5.0 out of 5 stars the 60s documented in Paris August 15, 2013
    Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
    The 60s changed all of western society and to see it documented in France is a special insight. Now French conservatives cry against the lazy worker but then Renault and French industrialism brutalized that same human robot. It reminds us that even as late as the 1960s France was holding a nation hostage to its whims and tyranny.
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    3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
    5.0 out of 5 stars Chronicle of a summer March 29, 2013
    Format:DVD
    A must see for everybody interested in documentary and direct camera shooting. The film innovated with small-concealed tape recorder, and hand-held 16mm camera shooting techniques that permitted improvisation in a sociological experiment by the unusual collaboration between Jean Rouch and Edgar Morin in the summer of 1960. Jean Rouch was an anthropolog who worked in Africa pioneering film and anthropology since the early 1940 and he became famous for "les Maitres Fous" in 1955 (Crazy Masters). Edgar Morin was known for his study of the star system. The collaboration is intriguing and the film that results from it is fascinating as it takes the pulse of France in the early 1960s, with the movement against torture and colonial war in Algeria, the examination of the aftermath of the horrors of World War ii and the scars it left on the young as well as the delight of being young in 1960 in Paris, France.
    Jean Rouch is a pioneer of the French New Wave.
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    2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
    Format:Blu-ray
    Edgar Morin, renowned French philosopher and sociologist. Jean Rouch, renown French filmmaker and anthropologist and one of the founders of Cinéma vérité (a style of documentary filmmaking which combines improvisation with the use of a camera to unveil truth or highlight subjects hidden behind crude reality).

    Both men would team up (not exactly collaborate but work together on a film with their own self-purpose) on creating a documentary during the summer of 1960 and find out if it's possible to act sincerely in front of a camera. And the two worked with director cameraman Michel Brault (the filmmaker is a leading figure of the documentary genre known as Direct Cinema and a pioneer of the hand-held camera aesthetic).

    In 1961, the film may or may have not struck a chord with viewers discussing life, whether or not they are happy, their feelings towards being near someone who is Black or what is happening with the Algerian War (a war between France and Algerian independence movements from 1954 to 1952) and the turmoil that was taking place in Congo.

    But the film follows real life individuals discussing various topics by both filmmakers on things affecting French society at that time and by the end of the film, showing the subjects what they saw on film and discussing their true feelings about it. With opinions that surprised both Edgar Morin and Jean Rouch.

    Considered as an important film that pertains to Cinéma vérité, "Chronicle of a Summer" will be released on Blu-ray and DVD courtesy of the Criterion Collection in February 2013.

    VIDEO:

    "Chronicle of a Summer" is presented in 1080p High Definition (1:37:1 aspect ratio). Thanks to a recent restoration, the film looks wonderful on Blu-ray.
    Read more ›
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    5.0 out of 5 stars LOVE IT!!! November 4, 2013
    Format:Blu-ray|Verified Purchase
    very good product !!!

    Including subtitle and everything I need for the presentation ~!

    I really love the movie. It is not just an experiment, but a milestone of film history, not mention the cinema verito.
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