Georges Franju

Sog.: dal volume Pierre Curie di Marie Curie. Scen.: Georges Franju. F.: Marcel Fradetal. M.: Roland Coste. Int.: Nicole Stéphane (Marie Curie), Lucien Hubert (Pierre Curie), Lucien Bargeon (Henri Becquerel). Prod.: Fred Orain per Téléfilms-Armor Films. 35mm. D.: 14’. Bn.

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

Up until the last sequence, Franju draws only on the scientific content of Marie Curie’s biographical and autobiographical account, exceptionally punctuating her words with close-ups and extreme close-ups. Like his fellow Frenchman Jacques Tourneur in Romance of Radium (1937), his aim is to show the radiance of the invisible. As he told Freddy Buache, “since the camera cannot capture radioactivity, I chose to show the radioactivity in Nicole Stéphane’s eyes”.

Bernard Eisenschitz


Is Monsieur et Madame Curie a scientific movie? Naturally the audience is not sure what to make of this or that machine. But what matters is this woman’s voice as she speaks of her husband and their work together, the flowers in the final shot, the reenactment of a whole lifetime. So this is a history of joint scientific endeavour. It is about a lifetime spent thinking, observing, struggling together in silence. Thanks to Franju, we now know that the discovery of radium is an amazing love story.

Jacques Demeure and Ado Kyrou, Le plus grand cinéaste français, “Positif”, n. 16, May 1956

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by courtesy of Armor Films