DVD - 2017 | French
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When an innocent prank goes wrong, it becomes the definitive moment in a man's life. A forged 500 franc note is accidentally passed to an unsuspecting young man. Ignorant of its origins, he tries to use the bill but is apprehended for forgery.
Publisher: [New York] : The Criterion Collection, [2017]
Edition: Criterion collection, Widescreen version
ISBN: 9781681433325
Characteristics: 1 videodisc (84 min.) : sound, color ; 4 3/4 in
DVD video,4 3/4 in
digital,optical,monaural,Dolby digital
widescreen (1.66:1)
video file,DVD video,region 1


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Oct 10, 2018

"Build your film on white, on silence, and on stillness."-Robert Bresson
French auteur Robert Bresson was among the most revered directors of the 20th century, responsible for such masterpieces as "Diary of a Country Priest" and "Au Hasard Balthazar." There's an austerity and purity to his films, which sometimes makes them easier to respect than to enjoy. His last film, based on a Tolstoy book, is among his most rigorous in style and bleakest in outlook. Essentially, the protagonist (and antagonist) is money. Like "Pickpocket" and "A Man Escaped" it deals with crime but in a very oblique and subtle way. Released in 1983 and given the deluxe treatment by Criterion.

Jan 31, 2018

If you like to watch a plain movie other than a big, loud, and fancy Hollywood film; if you prefer to think while you are watching it; if you want to know how a normal thing, which you may not pay an attention to in a daily routine, that could mess up an ordinating people's life, here is it, L'argent. It was the last movie made by Robert Bresson, was an acclaimed French film director, known for a spiritual and ascetic style.

Oct 25, 2017

The consequences, the ramifications of our actions - sometimes small, sometimes large - but can be profound. I highly recommend this film.

Aug 27, 2017

This 1983 L'Argent (money) was based on Leo Tolstoy's novella The Forged Coupon. (Brings to mind Tolstoy's contemporary Fyodor Dostoyevsky's novel "Crime and Punishment.") The film covered a lot of events involving many characters in just a bit over 85 minutes with few dialogue but striking sequences of visual scenes that began with two school boys passed off a counterfeit 500 fr note and ended with brutal madness. One of the best “show, don’t tell” movie. Both DVD and BR versions are available now.

Read the article “L’argent: The Weight of the World By Adrian Martin”, a booklet included with the Criterion Collection DVD:

Jul 26, 2017

It's amazing so few people know of Bresson's films; he's one of the greatest filmmakers of all time. This film, his last, is brutally efficient in laying out his often bleak view of the world. Based on a Tolstoy story 'Le Faux Billet', it's an exercise in zero sum eliminative logic. The fact that the culprit (a counterfeit bill) is set in motion by playfully malicious youths and then the path is cleared by the greed and malice of their hypocritical parents is a beautiful setup for this dark meditation on the subjugation of human beings to their ruthless god.

Sep 10, 2015

Bresson's last film- and in some ways his most austere and bleakest film. For a man in his 80's this movie contained the rage and passion of one in his 20's. A must see.

Jul 03, 2015

L’Argent is the last of Robert Bresson’s thirteen films and most likely one could recognize the director, having seen a few of his films. He frames each shot with only the information that he wishes to portray to the audience, so often we only see only partial body shots whenever the facial expression would be inconsequential. The library copy is excellent as it has a commentary track plus an interview of Bresson (rare, as Bresson avoided interviews). Most viewers will most likely give the film one or two stars as they will have no clue what Bresson is trying to achieve. This is the only Bresson film that I have seen in a large theatre. All the other films that I’ve see were in tiny revival movie houses with just a handful of people attending.


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Aug 28, 2017

You said he was kind.
-I'll be kind when I'm rich.
When I come home, I'll work as hard as I can. The three of us will start a new life together. ... Where are you going? Stay!
A man who hasn't killed can be worse than a mass murderer.
The money you stole...
-Without bloodshed, Your Honour.
Did you act out of idealism, to redistribute it?
-I'm generous.
The investigation has revealed that, along with your love of good suits. Do you plead guilty of fraud and theft?
-Given the circumstances of my thefts and given my ideas...
Just answer our questions.
-...that reject all rules of any kind, I was hoping to be acquitted. Or, if sentenced, to escape and start again.

Aug 28, 2017

And they beat you? You do everything, you wear yourself out for them. How come you don't drown yourself? Are you expecting a miracle?
-I expect nothing.
Why did you kill? You kill for something, for a reason.
- I enjoyed it.
Neither of us is a killer. We alone have no one on our conscience.
-You have me on your conscience. You have to answer for that now.
You got revenge without doing a thing.
Although justice is against you, you have the natural right to be an ordinary man. With your new awareness of yourself, of the world's absurdity and of the impossibility of change, what do they tell you?
-They say, "Obey! Stay out of what doesn't concern you. Wait. Everyone will be happy soon." I won't wait around for that.


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