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March 09, 2011


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Glenn, your second masterpiece in as many posts, although between LA NUIT DU CARREFOUR and CERTIFIED COPY, it's hard to decide which film is madder. Love them both.

Not unrelated, I just saw Hitchcock's NUMBER 17 the other day, and was unprepared for how good it was - not in the carefully-orchestrated, every-nail-cleanly-driven-into-place manner of canonical Hitch, but - in the same general neighborhood of Renoir's film (or the same borough, anyway) - its dreamlike power, which is enhanced rather than mitigated by what looks to be shoddy construction and journeyman technical prowess. And it's just nuts.


This Renoir film is one hell of a wet dream on so many levels. Granted Becker lost a reel---but those were the days when film narrative leaped about in vapors and the connective tissue didn't mean a damn. Today it's all connective tissue and most films are boring.
I love that scene where Maigret fingers the inside of Else's wall safe while she reclines seductively on a sofa.


I'm given to understand the "lost reel" business may be greatly exaggerated.


@Jaime, I wouldn't be surprised if it were an exaggeration.
In some places Jean Mitry is hinted as the guilty party.
But I do find it rather adds to the mystique of this strange magical film.

david hare

Bazin ascribes the missing reel to Mitry. Frankly I don't think it makes an iota of difference to the film if a reel were missing or not. It defines its own perfection.


Is there a legit release of this on DVD? Been wanting to see it for years...


The secret society of devotees who celebrate this Renoir need to share their access-secret: how does someone in the hinterlands arrange to see LA NUIT....?

Glenn Kenny

@ Edo and jwharthen: A semi-legit release, at least—mine is a reasonably professional quality DVD-R (the screen cap above it from it)—that I ordered off of Movies Unlimited, not exactly a fly-by-night outfit. At popular price, even; check it out:



Simenon has a pretty fascinating adaptation history. Renoir, Chabrol, Bela Tarr, Marcel Carne, Serge Gainsbourg...

david hare

And Duvivier whose amazing la Tete d'un Homme was released within a month of the Renoir in 1932.
Glenn the disc you and others bought was in fact "stolen" from a certain fileshare site where it was free, if only to the members of course. My problem with the people who nabbed it was apart from a good quality pvr feed to Video.TS they also nabbed some heavy duty labor of love on custom English subs. The same people also nabbed a custom subbed version of Sirk's Zu Neuen Ufern from the same place, and no doubt they'll strike again.

This stuff is a real horn of a dilemma. They have the fileshare people over a barrel in a legally gray area, but they are able to exploit the efforts of those people to make a profit for themselves when that was never the intention of the original suppliers.


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