Sunday, March 15, 2020

Sous le soleil de Satan

Full Mettle Pialat


Pialat's masterful Palme d'Or winner of 1987, Sous le soleil de Satan [Under the Sun of Satan] re-emerges in a new HD master of Gaumont (a rework of their early 2010s master) with the scene of the confrontation with Satan (Jean-Christophe Bouvet) restored to its presumably proper color-timing on the American Cohen Media Blu-ray. (I co-produced the Masters of Cinema DVD, and vaguely recall that the original surreal blue color filter over the scene, although initially approved by Pialat's estate and associates, including DP Willy Kurant, was tampered with by the lab at the time of outputting the HDCAM master tape.)

The straight-razor unites the tonsure and carotid. Add the chain and we have an incomplete catalogue of the holy utilities of the Church's mesmeric masochism. The twice-proclaimed "miracle" of the encounter with Satan suggests that Man and Servant dwell sous son soleil exactement.

"I was shown Man's misery and Satan's power for a reason."

Gabe Klinger's piece on the film, along with Pialat interviewings on it and other miscellany are here. Pialat's short films included on the Gaumont and Masters of Cinema DVD editions, Isabelle aux Dombes [Isabelle in La Dombes, 1951], his first film, and Congrès eucharistique diocésain. [Diocesan Eucharistic Congress.] are not included on the Cohen Blu-ray, but the stunning c. 2010 12-minute interview with Depardieu is.


Notes, information, and remarks by Pialat on the director's short films, which span in their entirety 1951-1966, can be found here.

Kent Jones's 2008 essay on
L'enfance-nue, and my translations of accompanying interviews with Pialat can be found at this blog here.

Emmanuel Burdeau's 2009 essay on
Nous ne vieillirons pas ensemble, and my translations of accompanying interviews with Pialat can be found at this blog here.

Gabe Klinger's 2010 essay on
Sous le soleil de Satan, and my translation of a 1987 interview with Pialat, and a 2003 interview with Sandrine Bonnaire, can be found at this blog here.

Adrian Martin's 2009 essay on
La gueule ouverte, and my translation of remarks about the film, can be found at this blog here.

Dan Sallitt's 2008 essay on
Police (which he considers one of his favorite pieces of his own writing) has just been posted at his blog, here. A dossier of my translations of interviews with Pialat about the film has been posted here.

Dan's 2010 MoC essay on
À nos amours. has also been posted at his blog here. A visual I made for the film along with my translation of the 1984 Le Monde conversation between Maurice Pialat and Jean-Luc Godard can be found here.

My essay on
Passe ton bac d'abord... — "The War of Art" — can be read here. A dossier of my translations of four interviews with Pialat around the film can be read here.

Sabrina Marques's essay on
Van Gogh is here, alongside Godard's letter to Pialat, and words from Pialat about the film.


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