Every film from Roger Ebert's "Great Movies" essays.
War...and how it affects the lives of our children
A timeless evocation of childhood innocence corrupted, René Clément’s Forbidden Games tells the story of a young girl orphaned by war and the farm boy she joins in a fantastical world of macabre play. At once mythical and heartbreakingly real, this unique film features astonishing performances by its child stars and was honored with a special foreign language film Academy Award in 1952.
Seeking perfection in art is a curse. "Why?" I hear you demand in suitably suppliant fashion. Because 'flaws' are often an irrelevance, and one that distracts viewers, reviewers and critics from embracing something truly special.
Take Forbidden Games, an Oscar-winner from 1952, which has more than its fair share of narrative and stylistic shortcomings. The subplots required to power its plot - including a rivalry between neighbours and an illicit romance between their offspring - are heavy-handed and a little dull, while the interiors shot around the lower level of a farmhouse are neither cinematic nor terribly credible.
Which makes it a flawed film, right? But it's also one of the greatest films ever made: an incredible, indelible movie about…
“Come away, O human child!
To the waters and the wild
With a faery, hand in hand,
For the world's more full of weeping than you can understand."
- William Butler Yeats
There are only a handful of movies which have made me bawl my eyes out...This winner of the Golden Lion at the Venice Film Festival, a Special Award as Best Foreign Language Film at the Oscars is a devastating and lyrical poetic ode to loss of childhood innocence..featuring heart wrenching performances and soulful background score this one is timeless!!!
Starting and finishing with just two of the many tragedies of the Second World War, Forbidden Games focusses on a family involved in the war purely thanks to the bad luck of living in rural France in 1940. Having witnessed the slaughter of her parents by a Nazi Messerschmitt bomber, young Paulette finds herself taken in by the Dollé family, all of whom are suffering at the hands of the war.
Forbidden Games is a beautiful if tragic portrayal of childhood innocence above all else. Despite witnessing something as horrific as the death of her own parents, Paulette seems unstirred, knowing that they are dead but not understanding what that actually means. As the film continues this innocence fades, she…
A deeply affecting wartime fable that, like the very best of war films, presents us with the horrors as (barely) understood by a child. Startlingly good young leads lend an air of angelic grace to a story that turns out to be far more comical than I anticipated. The laughs—and they are many—don't prohibit the moments of intense drama, and Clémeni manages to espouse some pretty contentious views on the role and relevance of religion amid all the havoc. The balance between comedy and tragedy is so strikingly adept, keeping us consistently amused before reminding us of the difficulty of life in these times with all the sharpness of a slap to the face. Showing war through a kid's eyes…
I tend to have a fairly mainstream taste, but one of the major films where I go against the grain is Grave of the Fireflies (Mike D'Angelo may be a little harsh, but not too far when he said of it as being "anti-idiocy" more than anti-war). Now comes Forbidden Games, another film that deals with children facing the ramification of war. Both films have to walk a tight balance between illustrating the war's horror and aftereffect, and also depicting a clear-eyed view of the children's "innocence."
I feel Grave falters hard in the latter aspect, contrasting much by what Forbidden Games does right by it. Both films show the children's flaws, but Forbidden Games feels more straightforward and honest…
Released in 1952 this René Clément war movie won the Venice Film Festival's main award but has subsided in popularity as the years went by. It expertly manages to delight, move and repel in equal measures and whilst its controversial subject matter may not shock as it once did it is still quite unsettling. The film opens with a young girl, Paulette (played brilliantly by a then 5 year old Brigitte Fossey) fleeing Paris with her parents and dog as German bombers attack. Her entire family (including dog) are killed by machine gun fire as they try and escape over a bridge. Dazed and confused by what has happened she stumbles upon a nearby farm and makes friends with the…
+++ Brigitte Fossey
+ Better on a rewatch
- A bit too much religious references
- The acting is uneven from the different actors
This heartbreaking examination of two children's close relationship is one of the most beautiful and moving cinematic experiences I've ever had. I honestly don't know if I could bear to watch it again. It's so poignant and haunting, the story draws you in and never lets you go until the gripping end. The finale will definitely stick to you for a long time after.
A short and sweet film involving two children: the angelic, Parisian
Paulette and the farmer's son Michel, who become playmates and create an animal cemetery to escape the death and war around them.
Perhaps too sentimental, but it is equally sad and joyous - capturing the innocence of youth whilst the world crumbles around them.
Maybe it wasn't very clever of me to read Truffaut's "A Certain Tendency in French Cinema" before watching Forbidden Games, but I don't think it pointed out anything that wasn't visible from the film alone, so here goes.
The people of rural France are portrayed as the mean, amoral, rotten agents in what we all know from the very beginning is essentially a hopeless tragedy, but one devoid of the humanism and understanding of Neo-realism. The contrast between this completely pejorative representation and the way the children are made to look angelic - especially Paulette because, you know, she's Parisian - is phony and vicious, grossly forcing a Manichaean vision of mean adults vs good children. The ending, with all…
Little kids learning to deal with death.
Some oddly heartwarming scenes.
”You’re never satisfied”
Forbidden Games is one of those pictures I have been seeking to see for ages. I knew the reputation that the film had but strangely enough the thing that pulled me the most into this picture was actually its beautiful name Jeux interdits and its iconic poster. To add to that, the film had an interesting premise and it was directed by René Clement, a director whose work I had still not dug into.
Forbidden Games is Directed by René Clement and it stars Brigitte Fossey, Georges Poujouly, Amédée, Laurence Badie and Suzanne Courtal.
You know those highly regarded classics that everyone praises and loves so much, that you then see and simply cannot see what…
24th movie Around the World in 80 Movies - France
Forbidden Games is one of those acclaimed movies that also are much praised here at LB, and still I can't wholeheartedly approve neither acclaim nor the generous ratings. To me it's more of an interesting movie than a truly great one.
There's certainly layers here; playing around from innocence, ignorance, morbidity and the differences between the adults and the children--for better or worse. And I'm not discouraged by having two main characters portrayed by children; as both Brigitte Fossey and Georges Poujouly does remarkably well with their material.
But there's quite a lot to be said about the cinematography, stumbling secondary story-strings, and a lack of realism in the more…
The film's upfront lack of sentimentality - seen in the brutal first ten minutes - was, for this guy, still legitimately devastating. In a more cynical mode I might have dismissed this, but the child performers are incredible and the animal performances are magical as well (dog, owl).
A film that is more about the consequences of war rather than war itself and that the fact that the kids think the cross represents only death rather than the biblical meanings is interesting to me. I can understand why these two kids would be messed up.
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Great 60-90 min films (for those days when you just don't have the energy to watch a 3 hour masterpiece)
Doesn't the title of the list explain it well enough? This is a list of 200+ quality "short" films. Easy…