Carné. All three of Carné’s archiveable films land in the top 100 of their respective decade. There isn’t much beyond that as far as resume. I’ll get to it below but the disconnect I have with the critical consensus on Children of Paradise is reason why Carné has fallen to the #132 slot here.
Best film: Children of Paradise. Immaculately curated production design—Carné successfully builds the world of 19th century Paris.
total archiveable films: 3
top 100 films: 0
top 500 films: 1 (Children of Paradise)
top 100 films of the decade: 3 (Children of Paradise, Port of Shadows, Le Jour Se Leve)
most overrated: Children of Paradise. It is Carné’s strongest film but the TSPDT consensus has it at #62 and I’ve got it at #484. That is quite a gulf.
most underrated: All three of the Carné films in the archives are also in the TSPDT top 1000 but Le Jour Se Leve is underrated by the consensus- they have it at #860 and I’d have it 100 slots higher or more.
gem I want to spotlight: Port of Shadows. Poetic realism at its finest. Fatalism, Michel Simon, Jean Gabin—a perfect film to start your Carne study.
stylistic innovations/traits: There’s an absolute art in Carne’s weathered urban universe of doomed protagonists. He was THE poetic realist that would bridge the gap between the burgeoning post WW2 neo-realism and film noir (both would explode around 1944-1945).
- Children of Paradise
- Le Jour Se Leve
- Port of Shadows
By year and grades
|1938- Port of Shadows||HR|
|1939- Le Jour Se Leve||MS|
|1945- Children of Paradise||MS|
*MP is Masterpiece- top 1-3 quality of the year film
MS is Must-see- top 5-6 quality of the year film
HR is Highly Recommend- top 10 quality of the year film
R is Recommend- outside the top 10 of the year quality film but still in the archives