Known outside of France for her roles in film classics like “Last Year at Marienbad,” “Stolen Kisses,” and “The Discreet Charm of the Bourgeoisie,” the late actress Delphine Seyrig was, along with Catherine Deneuve, Jeanne Moreau, and Anna Karina, one of the great female talents to emerge at the birth of the Nouvelle Vague.
But perhaps unbeknownst to most was Seyrig’s involvement, beginning in the late 1960s, with the French feminist movement, for which she became one of its leading celebrity voices during the latter part of her career.
That part of the actress’s life is revealed with considerable detail in “Delphine and Carole” (“Delphine et Carole, insoumuses”), a documentary from director Callisto McNulty that explores how Seyrig and filmmaker Carole Roussopoulos joined forces to make a handful of protest movies, using the new medium of video that became available in the 1970s.
For decades, the remains of María Martín’s mother have lain beneath a roadway in Spain. Her death unmarked except for her aging daughter’s lonely vigil.
Cars pass indifferently across the route, a symbol of how the country paved over its history of brutal repression and political murder under the fascist regime of General Francisco Franco.
Why María Martín’s mother was killed–along with tens of thousands of others heaped in mass graves–and why Spain has resolutely refused to come to terms with Franco’s era of blood and torture, are the subject of “The Silence of Others.”
The documentary was executived produced by Oscar-winning filmmaker Pedro Almodóvar and directed by Emmy winners Almudena Carracedo and Robert Bahar.
Mao Zedong launched the Anti-Rightist Movement in 1957 as a reaction to the critical statements that emerged from the Hundred Flowers Movement, during which intellectuals were encouraged to express their honest views of the Communist Party.
As a result of this brutal campaign, hundreds of thousands of intellectuals were sent to hard labor camps for re-education.
In his latest documentary, “Dead Souls,” Wang Bing addresses the forgotten history of Jiabiangou, one of the most brutal camps, located in the northwestern region of Gansu province.
Clocking in at over eight hours, the film marks a new installment in Wang’s ongoing investigation of the history of Jiabiangou. The camp was also the subject of his lone fiction film, “The Ditch” (2010).
With “Dead Souls,” Wang delves deeper into the survivors’ recollections to record an oral history of Jiabiangou, the result of 120 interviews conducted between 2005 and 2014 and over 600 hours of footage.
Though filmed between 1998 and 2001, Yves Saint Laurent documentary, “Celebration,” is only now seeing the light of day. It was released Nov. 14 in France.
The depiction of an aging, ailing Saint Laurent in the years before his departure from the fashion house in 2002 is said to have incensed Pierre Bergé, Saint Laurent’s life and business partner, who blocked the release of the film.
“Whereas we had total freedom during the filming between 1998 and 2001, I realized once the film was over that Pierre Bergé and I didn’t have the same idea of what a documentary is,” explained director Oliver Meyrou.
“Celebration” dives into the day-to-day activity of the Saint Laurent couture house, capturing the intense preparation of fashion shows and special celebrations.
A silent and camera-shy Saint Laurent is filmed in black and white, while other members of the couture house — première d’atelier Madame Colette, public relations head Dominique Deroche, Bergé, Loulou de la Falaise, and Betty Catroux — move and talk in color.
Bergé asked the director to view the footage before its release, which Meyrou refused. As a result, despite being screened at the Berlin International Film Festival in 2007, the documentary was banned from hitting screens.