Pierre-Henri Gibert

Int.: Marco Bellocchio. Prod.: Jérôme Barthelemy, Daniel Sauvage per Caïmans Productions. DCP. D.: 26’. Bn e Col.

T. it.: Italian title. T. int.: International title. T. alt.: Alternative title. Sog.: Story. Scen.: Screenplay. F.: Cinematography. M.: Editing. Scgf.: Set Design. Mus.: Music. Int.: Cast. Prod.: Production Company. L.: Length. D.: Running Time. f/s: Frames per second. Bn.: Black e White. Col.: Color. Da: Print source

Film Notes

Pierre-Henri Gibert has made documentaries about art and history in addition to numerous portraits of filmmakers, from Jacques Audiard to Alain Resnais and from Volker Schlöndorff to Henri-Georges Clouzot; his 21st film, Viva Varda!, won the 2023 Prix Télévision for best documentary.
L’Image originelle is a series of 26-minute TV programmes, which was broadcast in France by CINE+ Club. Since 2018, it has interviewed ten filmmakers: Olivier Assayas, Marco Bellocchio, Xavier Dolan, Agnès Jaoui, Naomi Kawase, Cédric Klapisch, David Lynch, Michel Ocelot, Joachim Trier and Lars von Trier.
The structure of the programme is very simple: to go straight to the filmmaker’s first source of inspiration, to get them to recount their debut, the problems and mishaps the production faced, and the relationship between that film and those that followed. I have chosen two episodes: David Lynch talking about Eraserhead, one of the most unsettling features in the history of cinema and the opening gambit in a filmography packed with mystery and trance; and Marco Bellocchio discussing I pugni in tasca, a film whose rebellious power remains intact and undiminished 59 years after it was made. Two seminal films that gave rise to two incredibly personal filmographies, characterised by profound soul-searching and psychoanalysis. Two films that were made in the face of innumerable obstacles and on which Lynch and Bellocchio staked everything they owned. Gilbert is very skilled in getting two “sacred monsters” of the cinema who are usually reluctant to share their thoughts and memories, to open up, and he is equally good at matching their discourse with sequences from the films. It is rare that a contemporary television programme helps us to truly understand a filmmaker – but the format Gilbert adopts does so perfectly.

Gian Luca Farinelli

Copy from Caïmans Productions.