In 1960, anthropologist Jean Rouch and sociologist Edgar Morin took a camera onto the streets of Paris and into the lives of a wide array of people, from artists to factory workers, from an Italian émigré to an African student. This exquisite film captures the thoughts, aspirations and opinions of these Parisians, and while many have described it as ‘fly on the wall’, the directors are far from absent observers – Jean Rouch said he was more a ‘fly in the ointment’.
At the end, Rouch and Morin show the footage to the assembled cast, creating a reflexive loop of feedback within the film, as they discuss just how ‘real’ each of them were being. Chronicle of a Summer is captivating both as a unique evocation of France in the early 60s, and as an experiment in verité and reflexivity that influenced the course of cinema history.
The film will be introduced by Professor Ian Christie
Part of The Rule-Breakers, a new 10 week series at Bertha DocHouse featuring films that have influenced and developed the art of documentary and which continue to inspire us today. To see the rest of the programme click here.