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  • LE BEAU SERGE [HANDSOME SERGE] (Masters of Cinema) (DVD)
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LE BEAU SERGE [HANDSOME SERGE] (Masters of Cinema) (DVD)


Price: £7.99 & FREE Delivery in the UK on orders over £10. Details
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Product details

  • Directors: Claude CHABROL
  • Format: PAL
  • Language: French
  • Subtitles: English
  • Region: Region 2 (This DVD may not be viewable outside Europe. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 4:3 - 1.33:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Classification: 12
  • Studio: Eureka
  • DVD Release Date: 8 April 2013
  • Run Time: 99 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (8 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B00AMECA4S
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 41,237 in DVD & Blu-ray (See Top 100 in DVD & Blu-ray)

Reviews

Product Description

SYNOPSIS: Gérard Blain and Jean - Claude Brialy star in the first of their collaborations with the great Claude Chabrol. The director's masterful feature debut - ironic, funny, unsparing - is a revelation: another of that rare breed of film where the dusty formula might be used in full sincerity: Le Beau Serge marks the beginning of " the Chabrol touch. "

In this first feature film of the French New Wave, one year before Truffaut's The Four Hundred Blows, the dandyish François (Brialy, of Godard's A Woman Is a Woman, Rohmer's Claire's Knee, and countless other cornerstones of 20th - century French cinema) takes a holiday from the city to his home village of Sardent, where he reconnects with his old chum Serge (Blain), now a besotted and hopeless alcoholic, and sly duplicitous carnal Marie (Bernadette Lafont). A grave triangle forms, and a tragic slide ensues.

From Le Beau Serge onward up to his final film Bellamy in 2009, the revered Chabrol would come to leave a significant and lasting impression upon the French cinema - frequently with great commercial success. It is with great pride that we present Le Beau Serge , the kickstart of the Nouvelle Vague and of Chabrol's enormous body of work, on Blu - ray and DVD in the UK for the first time.

SPECIAL DVD EDITION:
  • Gorgeous new Gaumont restoration of the film in its original aspect ratio
  • New and improved English subtitles
  • Original theatrical trailer
  • A 56 - minute documentary about the making of the film
  • L' Avarice [ Avarice] , Chabrol's 1962 short film
  • A lengthy booklet with a new and exclusive essay by critic Emmanuel Burdeau; excerpts of interviews and writing by Chabrol; and more.


REVIEWS: " It presents a bleak, beautifully observed picture of provincial life" - Time Out

" Le Beau Serge received overwhelming critical approval of its use of non-professional actors, raw black-and-white photography (masterfully executed by Henri Decae), and personal vision. " - TV Guide's Movie Guide

From Amazon.co.uk

On stepping off the bus from Paris, François (Jean-Claude Brialy) quickly registers that life in his native village, Sardent, has moved on. Beneath the calm surface, an explosive cocktail of gossip, boredom, and repressed sexuality has fermented. Ostensibly back to recuperate from a bout of tuberculosis, François soon embarks on an almost religious quest to save his former close friend Serge (Gérard Blain) from self-destructive despair and alcoholism, and so the film resonates with Christian overtones of suffering, redemption and salvation. But it's not long before François falls into the arms and bed of the voluptuous Marie (Bernadette Laffont), thereby fuelling the villagers' mounting hostility to what they widely perceive as intrusive meddling.

"You examine us as if we were insects", Marie complains to François. Director Claude Chabrol began his career as a film critic for Les Cahiers du cinema, and observations like Marie's also operate as a running commentary on cinema itself. Le Beau Serge was instrumental in setting the agenda for what a vibrant modern cinema might be and do, and it was precisely in relation to this film that the very idea of a nouvelle vague (New Wave) in French cinema was first proposed at the end of the 50s. The passionate cinephilia that fuelled this new cinematic adventure feeds the film's innovative mix of a quasi-documentary neorealism and flights of Hitchcockian melodrama.

Cinematographer Henri Decae provides stunning photography of rural France, and the film as a whole retains an extraordinary freshness: colloquial speech and local accent are juxtaposed with Emile Delpierre's score, and the carefully composed imagery is brought to life by a generation of actors whose faces have yet to acquire the iconic status they enjoy today in French cinema. --Michael Witt --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Mark Barry HALL OF FAMETOP 50 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on 27 Feb. 2014
Format: Blu-ray
As you've probably gathered most of the reviews are for the 'DVD' version of the 1958 French Black and White classic “Le Beau Serge”. And the BLU RAY is available in a number of territories. But which issue to buy?

Unfortunately the desirable USA Criterion release is REGION-A LOCKED although it doesn't say so on Amazon.
So it WILL NOT PLAY on most UK BLU RAY players unless they're chipped to play 'all' regions (which the vast majority aren't).
Don’t confuse BLU RAY players that have multi-region capability on the 'DVD' front – that won’t help.

Luckily the “Masters Of Cinema” REGION B release uses the same restored elements and will play on UK machines.

Check you’re purchasing the right version before you buy the pricey Criterion release...
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By starlightspacelab on 18 April 2013
Format: Blu-ray Verified Purchase
The 1st Chabrol is a very intense movie. The acting of Brialy, Blain & Lafont is sublime. A story of true friendship where one friend does everything in his power to save the other however it is not that easy because Serge has a huge alcohol addiction. Again sheer beautiful packaging by Eureka! and interesting extra's. A true must have for each admiror of the nouvelle vague.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By The Old Geezer on 11 July 2014
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
I was 11 years old when this film burst on to the international cinema scene, and since I was no cinematic child prodigy, it passed me by. Now, 56 years later, this dvd has enabled me to begin catching up with what the nouvelle vague was all about. I understand French, so it was a joy to be able to watch Chabrol's debut masterpiece at home; although I must admit to falling back on the subtitles a few times when the provincial dialect became heavy. Some clever digital work appears to have been done to restore the print, which is great. Now onwards to its twin film, Les Cousins. This is a great buy for anyone interested in classic European cinema, and a very refreshing change from the offerings from Hollywood.
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8 of 10 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on 5 Mar. 2004
Format: VHS Tape Verified Purchase
In what is considered the first film of the French New Wave, Claude Chabrol gives us a hypnotic vision of opposites in the same style as Hitchcock's Shadow of a Doubt. Le Beau Serge follows the story of Francois, a young man who returns to his home town after twelve years, who finds that the town is dying. His landlady even tells him that everyone will be gone soon enough. In particular, he finds that a once-promising childhood friend, Serge, is trapped as an alcoholic in a loveless marriage.
The brilliance of the film lies not in its storytelling (it is quite slow at parts) nor its acting (most of the actors were non-professionals) but in its structure. Everything is seen in doubles. Francois and Serge are two sides to the same coin. Each has an elder counterpart. Each has a female relation which seems to switch off at times. Serge has both a wife and a mistress who is at one point Francois girlfriend; at the same time, Serge's wife becomes morally attached to Francois. In addition, scenes are doubled; two scenes in the cemetary, two implied sexual scenes in Glomaud's home, two turns by Francois and Michel at the beginning, the list goes on and on. Furthermore, entire shots are doubled with different couples in each. It is brilliant.
In addition, the film looks as if it were unpolished (which is a basic tenet of the New Wave), but it looks as if it was a director's first attempt. But that's not necessarily a bad thing.
The greatest detraction (apart from the sometimes overacting) is the musical score. It is extremely discordant with regards to the movie. Minimal scenes such as Serge exiting his house are accompanies by percussion that sounds as if it were a harbinger of doom. I don't know if Chabrol wanted this, but it becomes irritating and causes the viewer to laugh at the film.
As an added note, watch for the parallels of Francois and Serge with the town's children. The kids pop up everywhere
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