Every film from Roger Ebert's "Great Movies" essays.
Pick Pocket is a corporation drama from French avant-garde director Robert Bresson about a pickpocket thief.
So after the overwhelming satisfaction I found with Bresson's A Man Escaped, I immediately dove into his next chronological work Pickpocket. With a brisk 75 minute running time and an intriguing premise, I expected to have the same response that I had with his previous work. Whilst I didn't have the immediate affection for this film as I had for A Man Escaped, I have wrestled with it more after the fact to the point that it is showing it's true colours and I am very eager to watch it again.
With Bresson, one must adjust the way they read and understand film, and it helps to recognise his techniques. He throws convention out the window and strips away what…
Bresson's Pickpocket stands as the only film of his so far that I haven't been astounded by by its conclusion. I'm not entirely sure why that is. It is a film that made a dramatic impact on its release in 1959, and its reach extended prominently into the 80s (with influential film makers riffing off its visual turn of phrase), but I have to admit, as much as I admire the film, for me it is too sketchy to be completely successful.
I guess that sketchiness shouldn't come as too much of a surprise. I have to applaud Bresson's ambition in attempting to encapsulate Dostoyevsky's 'Crime and Punishment' in just 70 minutes but I can't help but feel he picked…
Bresson's Pickpocket is concise and simple, but deals with issues of man that go beyond any sort of simplicity. Alienism, loneliness, and the confused search for self-importance are just a handful of the issues facing the young French pickpocket Michel, who spends a majority of the film practicing and perfecting his skill, while fully aware of the authority's suspicion of him. Despite this suspicion, he continues with his craft, but throughout it he appears lost. No concrete reason is given for his tendencies. Could he simply be obsessed with voyeurism? Is he a bordering kleptomaniac? Or perhaps Michel is simply a lost man, separated from the world, love and family, looking for a form of self-acceptance. The film grows and…
Unlike the last movie I watched (The Fountain), Robert Bresson’s Pickpocket is a seemingly simple film that is anything but (simple). It’s a very insightful, yet ambiguous, film about one man’s troubles with not just his crimes but himself.
This is my first encounter with Bresson’s work, and certainly won’t be my last. His style definitely had an influence over Paul Schrader (as he gives an introduction) and Scorsese’s Taxi Driver. It utilizes narration from the main character as an apology of sorts, not for us or the world, but to himself. Martin LaSalle gives a great performance as Michel. He moves with a methodical, yet reserved, manner. This is exactly what (Bresson) wanted when hiring non-actors for roles. There…
Pickpocket is my first Bresson, I really didn't know what to expect going into this film. What I got was a fantastic film,Michel is Travis Bickell before Travis Bickell was even thought of. Isolated, lonely and conflicted with the world he's in, he drifts aimlessly pulling off stealing like it's an art. But he has a feeling that his luck is close to ending. At first I thought Michel unlikeable but as the film went on I really couldn't take my eyes off of him. Martin Lasalle is a quiet actor but he pulls off a great character piece here, at first he seemed kinda wooden but after awhile I could see he was doing some pretty great acting. Even though it's a short film at 75 minutes I kinda wished it was a little bit longer but at the same time, I liked that it ended the way it did.
Another wholly melancholy affair from master auteur Robert Bresson. Pickpocket is a poised and sure film, meticulously crafted and expertly executed.
The film has no major climax and its emotional range is rather small, but there is no doubting the film will captivate you from its opening sequences to its remarkable and unforgettable finish.
This review reportedly contains spoilers. I can handle the truth.
My feelings about Bresson’s films change with each viewing… the only ones that haven’t changed are the ones I’ve seen only once (really need to rewatch those, especially Une femme douce). My scores/rankings don’t fluctuate wildly, but within the pack of 8 that I feel are really good but not as good as A Man Escaped, I keep shuffling them around. Case in point: Pickpocket used to be my #2, but now I’ve put it a notch below Mouchette and around the same level of Une femme douce and Au hasard Balthazar. All of this is a lot of miserably obsessive kerfuffle that doesn’t matter to anyone but me, but I’m not in the mood to do any real writing…
Pickpocket passa-se em França numa altura de crise onde um rapaz não consegue arranjar emprego e então entra no mundo do crime, mais propriamente como um carteirista como uma maneira de sobrevivência.
O génio de Robert Bresson: Com este, o cinema é entretenimento e arte, não somos simplesmente atacados por toneladas de conteúdo intelectual nem carregados com entretenimento proveniente da ação (é a mistura mais sublime que poderia surgir entre estas duas opostas vertentes cinematográficas).
Robert Bresson sempre dividiu histórias bonitas e floreadas daquilo que ele chamava cinematografia, ele não queria passar imagens bonitas, ele passava aquilo que o público necessitava de ver, não eram imagens enriquecidas e coloridas mas sim melancólicas e de tristeza profunda. Bresson, acima de tudo,…
Me, here no less than elsewhere
Don't know why that is.
A simple plot that is masterfully directed.
Pickpocket shows the point of view of a misunderstood person in a harsh, unforgiving world
In the back half of Robert Bresson’s relatively meager yet awe-inspiring career, he would directly adapt Fyodor Dostoyevsky with a pair of great films, Une Femme Douce and Four Nights of a Dreamer. His Pickpocket, the revered 1959 classic, is clear to have been inspired by Crime and Punishment, with an intellectual protagonist who steals because he feels that he has a license to. Martin Lassalle, who, like all save two of Bresson’s protagonists (the women of his earliest two pictures), was a nonprofessional actor, and as Michel, the titular pickpocket, he is a compelling, if intentionally evasive presence. Through his relationship with a policeman, it becomes clear that Michel longs to be caught, as if seeking penance. Like A…
Before I get into my... issues with Pickpocket, there's something that needs stressing. This movie is gorgeous. Every single frame is just utterly stunning, a series of perfectly composed images of breathtaking beauty. As a purely aesthetic experience, it's unrivaled.
Unfortunately, this isn't a photo gallery, it's a movie. And as a movie... it's really fucking boring.
Pickpocket opens with a title card assuring us that this is ART and not some piece of pulp fiction trash, that there are no puerile thrills to be found here, that this is a film for intellectuals wishing to explore the motivations of a kleptomaniac. And Bresson is so intent on defying Truffaut's…
Incredibly effective in recreating the visceral thrill of picking pockets, showing us in intimate detail all the moves and tricks involved. Most impressive is the set piece where the main character and his accomplices work a train station, and there’s a dance-like rhythm to the movements and shots. There’s not a lot in terms of traditional character development, but I could really feel what the protagonist goes through as he becomes consumed by pickpocketing.
Footsteps, footsteps, and more footsteps. Robert Bresson's "Pickpocket" almost comes off more like a silent film with it's sparse use of dialogue and music; but throughout the film one hears footsteps even more than the narration from the main character. The title speaks for itself in terms of story and character, and while there's little surprise in the viewing Bresson's framing is near perfect and it keeps a viewer on the edge of their seat. The lead character tells us more with his eyes and his surroundings than his inner thoughts. The film is absolutely fascinating both in its technique and its portrait of thievery, but even with a sweet ending it feels a little unemotionally involving by the end.
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