Alternatives to Sight and Sound's Top 250 Films of All Time list named by /r/truefilm's community. With notes. Inspired by…
Michel is released from jail after serving a sentence for thievery. His mother dies and he resorts to pickpocketing as a means of survival.
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…
Well I must say it's very nice of Pickpocket to start off by telling us it's not a thriller.
I'm slightly pissed off by that opening. It could be because I'm over-tired and annoyed and possibly being over-sensitive, but there's a slightly sneery tone behind it that almost smacks to me as suggesting that it would be beneath this film to be labelled a mere thriller. It's a really odd and stand-offish way to start a film, I must admit, and while I suppose in one way I do slightly appreciate its honesty, I think it could have done me a big favour in furthering that honesty.
"This is a…
A film that defies star ratings. Deeply unsettling. I still don't know if I love it, but I do know that it's absolutely brilliant.
A suit that's slightly too large. Impassive eyes that hold yours just past the point of comfort and suddenly drop. Delicately roving hands that slide over a cuff, a button, a purse clasp, and slip inward - or shy away.
I'm not sure when I've been more uncomfortable in the company of a protagonist. Watching him is like an experience of repeatedly, accidentally catching someone masturbating - and then we both walk away, pretending no one saw such a private compulsion made public.
In the final moments, the impassive eyes change; they are less secretive, hidden; there is, even, an open, innocent eagerness. My discomfort drops for the first time.
But then, "Fin." What has that last scene resolved? I am not sure.
"Can we not admit that certain skilled men, gifted with intelligence, talent or even genius, and thus indispensable to society, rather than stagnate, should be free to disobey laws in certain cases?" ~ Michel
If dourness can be beautiful and numbness artistic, then Robert Bresson is the writer-director to make it so. I watched this just a couple of days after viewing his Diary of a Country Priest, and the similarities are striking. There's the same laconic, solitary central figure -- this time a thief named Michel played by lanky Martin LaSalle -- and there's the recording of personal thoughts in a journal. Although this film takes place in Paris among lots of people, Michel is just as alone in…
A.V. Club review. Try as I might, I can't make the final line reverberate back through the entire film, which is what would need to happen for it to have the ecstatic effect Bresson clearly intends. Had enormous difficulty addressing that very personal reaction in the review while simultaneously acknowledging Pickpocket's importance and the fact that many people consider its ending one of cinema's greatest, which is one of several reasons why I think a blanket ban on the use of first person is wrongheaded. (Hi various editors!)
Inspired by Dostoevsky's Crime and Punishment, Pickpocket is a great philosophical complement to the novel. The crimes here are smaller than Raskolnikov's ax murder, which provides a different take on the underlying themes. Here we see the gradual dehumanization of the protagonist. His crimes may be lesser, but he spends longer mired in them. As such his redemption, only hinted at here, seems a longer road than it was for Dostoevsky's hero.
O vício e a desgraça contornando as balas sociais até a junção final.
Influential Robert Bresson film about a solitary Parisian pickpocket. As with later films "Au hasard Balthazar" and "Mouchette," the shooting style is straightforward and acting is stark and reserved, the minimalist style prompting us to apply our own emotional interpretation to the narrative ... even in the more highly-charged scenes it's seldom apparent what these people are feeling. Taxi Driver screenwriter Paul Schrader considers the film "as close to perfect as there can be," and there's certainly some of Michel in Travis Bickle ... both characters are lonely outsiders, each narrating their account and expressing a sense of alienation borne of some sense of superiority. But Michel seems to be the more accessible of the two ... he's rather pitiful…
I'm interested in what Bresson is doing but I don't know that I "get" it yet. On its face this seems like a pretty ordinary movie. Maybe the acting is a bit more understated than you'd expect, but it's not totally without character or emotion. From this vantage point it's not easy to see what it's innovating. His approach isn't nearly as apparent as the rule-breaking Breathless, say. I can enjoy the film as a character study/low-key caper.
The characters are disinterested which makes for a disinteresting narrative, but man, these guys sure do have some sticky fingaz!
This film is great - no doubt about that, but it is a very depressing and short watch. The film basically shows isolation in the harshest light possible. It shows the wages of crime and a mans eventual downfall.
Problem with it is, it is sad. The film, even though it is very short, starts to drag and gets boring at stages. Also the film is not something I'd be rewatching often and I am still uncertain if I loved or enjoyed it.
But that pickpocket scene were all three men start pickpocketing together was pure brilliance! Overall this film is one you should watch, but you may not enjoy it and it is very very depressing.
Bresson's austere style minimized performance; the actors were directed to perform with a lack of emotion. In some cases this works mesmerizingly -- such as Les Dames des bois du Boulogne, where it underscores Helene's evil; here, it just contributes to an dispiriting sense of ennui. The detailed scenes of theft are impressive, but in the end the film feels more like a shrug than an artistic accomplishment.
May 2016 Scavenger Hunt
Task #24: Any film from Roger Ebert's 'Great Movies' list
Robert Bresson's Pickpocket is a film whose legacy speaks for itself, having inspired several directors throughout the years. The story follows Michel, a young French man who secures his living through pickpocketing. The bleak nature of the film is inspired a lot by Russian literature, and the film has often been compared to Dostoyevsky's Crime and Punishment. Personally, I view Pickpocket as a manifestation of the existentialist ideas displayed on Camus's The Stranger. There are many parallels that can be drawn between Michel and Meursault, due to their apathetic nature. Also, both characters' detachment from society is driven further by the loss of their mother, which ultimately brings their downfall even closer. Overall, I find Pickpocket to be a very interesting film, and I really appreciate its minimalistic way of telling the story.
Fantastic. I don't know how far back you'd have to go to get the social issues brought up in the film in such a realistic way, sympathetic to the plight of the poor and the petty criminals, but I'm sure this was groundbreaking on arrival.
since I'm in a complete Assayas mood, here are his favourite films that I've taken from a couple sources (top…
All the films from all the editions, including those subsequently removed, presently totalling 1177. An easy way of seeing how…