Jacques Rivette is perhaps the best-kept secret of French cinema. A founding figure in the New Wave, and at the centre of the Cahiers du cinema team, he developed into one of the most unusual and adventurous French directors of the last sixty years, yet his work remains little-known in comparison with his contemporaries, and this study is the first in English to look at the full span of his career. Starting with his decisively influential film criticism of the 1950s, it moves from the New Wave through the complex, experimental films of the 1970s to the challenging, playful dramas which ensured his visibility during the following two decades, and ends in the present, including Rivette's most recent films, Histoire de Marie et Julien (2003) and Ne touchez pas la hache (2007).
The book takes a thematic approach, offering detailed discussion of key elements of Rivette's film world, including games, conspiracy and jealousy, as well as a study of what Rivette's cinema adds to our understanding of key theoretical concepts in Film Studies such as narrative, space and adaptation. There are many close analyses of sequences from Rivette's films including Paris nous appartient (1961), Celine et Julie vont en bateau (1974) and La Belle Noiseuse (1991). -- .
Douglas Morrey is Associate Professor in the Department of French Studies in the University of Warwick. Alison Smith is Lecturer in European Film Studies at the University of Liverpool -- .
List of plates Series editors' foreword Acknowledgements 1 Introduction 2 The art of the present and the dialectics of duration: The film criticism of Jacques Rivette 3 In the labyrinth: Narrative, conspiracy, community 4 Story as space: Space as story 5 Family secrets 6 La Regle du jeu: Games and play 7 Play, theatre and performance 8 Adaptation 9 Pushing the envelope: Bodies, love and jealousy 10 Out of time: The unconsoled in Rivette's late works Conclusion Select bibliography Filmography Index -- .