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Chronicle of a Summer

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Chronicle of a Summer
Chronique d'un été
Directed byJean Rouch and Edgar Morin
Produced byAnatole Dauman
Narrated byJean Rouch
CinematographyMichel Brault
Raoul Coutard
Roger Morillière
Jean-Jacques Tarbès
Edited byNéna Baratier
Françoise Collin
Jean Ravel
Music byPierre Barbaud
Release date
  • October 1961 (1961-10)
(France)
Running time
90 minutes
CountryFrance
LanguageFrench

Chronicle of a Summer (French original title: Chronique d'un été) is a 1961 French documentary film shot during the summer of 1960 by sociologist Edgar Morin and anthropologist and filmmaker Jean Rouch, with the technical and aesthetic collaboration of Québécois director-cameraman Michel Brault.

The film is widely regarded as structurally innovative and an example of cinéma vérité and direct cinema. The term "cinéma vérité" was suggested by the film's publicist and coined by Rouch, highlighting a connection between film and its context, a fact Brault confirmed in an interview after a 2011 screening of Chronique d'un été at the TIFF Bell Lightbox in Toronto.

In a 2014 Sight & Sound poll, film critics voted Chronicle of a Summer the sixth-best documentary film of all time.[1]

Discover more about Chronicle of a Summer related topics

Documentary film

Documentary film

A documentary film or documentary is a non-fictional motion-picture intended to "document reality, primarily for the purposes of instruction, education or maintaining a historical record". Bill Nichols has characterized the documentary in terms of "a filmmaking practice, a cinematic tradition, and mode of audience reception [that remains] a practice without clear boundaries".

Edgar Morin

Edgar Morin

Edgar Morin is a French philosopher and sociologist of the theory of information who has been recognized for his work on complexity and "complex thought", and for his scholarly contributions to such diverse fields as media studies, politics, sociology, visual anthropology, ecology, education, and systems biology. As he explains: He holds two bachelors: one in history and geography and one in law. He never did a Ph.D. Though less well known in the anglophone world due to the limited availability of English translations of his over 60 books, Morin is renowned in the French-speaking world, Europe, and Latin America.

Anthropologist

Anthropologist

An anthropologist is a person engaged in the practice of anthropology. Anthropology is the study of aspects of humans within past and present societies. Social anthropology, cultural anthropology and philosophical anthropology study the norms and values of societies. Linguistic anthropology studies how language affects social life, while economic anthropology studies human economic behavior. Biological (physical), forensic and medical anthropology study the biological development of humans, the application of biological anthropology in a legal setting and the study of diseases and their impacts on humans over time, respectively.

Jean Rouch

Jean Rouch

Jean Rouch was a French filmmaker and anthropologist.

Michel Brault

Michel Brault

Michel Brault, OQ was a Canadian cinematographer, cameraman, film director, screenwriter, and film producer. He was a leading figure of Direct Cinema, characteristic of the French branch of the National Film Board of Canada in the 1960s. Brault was a pioneer of the hand-held camera aesthetic.

Cinéma vérité

Cinéma vérité

Cinéma vérité is a style of documentary filmmaking developed by Edgar Morin and Jean Rouch, inspired by Dziga Vertov's theory about Kino-Pravda. It combines improvisation with use of the camera to unveil truth or highlight subjects hidden behind reality. It is sometimes called observational cinema, if understood as pure direct cinema: mainly without a narrator's voice-over. There are subtle, yet important, differences between terms expressing similar concepts. Direct Cinema is largely concerned with the recording of events in which the subject and audience become unaware of the camera's presence: operating within what Bill Nichols, an American historian and theoretician of documentary film, calls the "observational mode", a fly on the wall. Many therefore see a paradox in drawing attention away from the presence of the camera and simultaneously interfering in the reality it registers when attempting to discover a cinematic truth.

Direct cinema

Direct cinema

Direct cinema is a documentary genre that originated between 1958 and 1962 in North America—principally in the Canadian province of Quebec and in the United States—and was developed in France by Jean Rouch. It is a cinematic practice employing lightweight filming equipment, hand-held cameras and live, synchronous sound that became available because of new, ground-breaking technologies developed in the early 1960s. These innovations made it possible for independent filmmakers to do away with large crews, studio sets, tripod-mounted equipment and special lights, expensive necessities that severely limited these low-budget documentarians. Like the cinéma vérité genre, Direct cinema was initially characterized by filmmakers' desire to capture reality directly, to represent it truthfully, and to question the relationship between reality and cinema.

Synopsis

The film begins with Rouch and Morin discussing whether it is possible to act sincerely on camera. A cast of real-life individuals are then introduced and led by the filmmakers to discuss topics related to French society and working-class happiness. At the movie's end, the filmmakers show their subjects the footage and have them discuss the level of reality that they thought the movie achieved.

Production

Chronicle of a Summer was filmed in Paris and Saint-Tropez, France. Rouch used synchronized sound, using a 16 mm camera connected through pilottone with a prototype of Nagra III, a transistorized tape recorder with electronic speed control developed by Stefan Kudelski.

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Paris

Paris

Paris is the capital and most populous city of France, with an estimated population of 2,165,423 residents in 2019 in an area of more than 105 km², making it the 30th most densely populated city in the world in 2020. Since the 17th century, Paris has been one of the world's major centres of finance, diplomacy, commerce, fashion, gastronomy, and science. For its leading role in the arts and sciences, as well as its very early system of street lighting, in the 19th century it became known as "the City of Light". Like London, prior to the Second World War, it was also sometimes called the capital of the world.

Saint-Tropez

Saint-Tropez

Saint-Tropez is a commune in the Var department and the region of Provence-Alpes-Côte d'Azur, Southern France. It is 68 kilometres west of Nice and 100 kilometres east of Marseille, on the French Riviera, of which it is one of the best-known towns. In 2018, Saint-Tropez had a population of 4,103. The adjacent narrow body of water is the Gulf of Saint-Tropez, stretching to Sainte-Maxime to the north under the Massif des Maures.

France

France

France, officially the French Republic, is a country primarily located in Western Europe. It also includes overseas regions and territories in the Americas and the Atlantic, Pacific and Indian Oceans, giving it one of the largest discontiguous exclusive economic zones in the world. Its metropolitan area extends from the Rhine to the Atlantic Ocean and from the Mediterranean Sea to the English Channel and the North Sea; overseas territories include French Guiana in South America, Saint Pierre and Miquelon in the North Atlantic, the French West Indies, and many islands in Oceania and the Indian Ocean. Its eighteen integral regions span a combined area of 643,801 km2 (248,573 sq mi) and contain close to 68 million people.

Pilottone

Pilottone

Pilottone and the related neo-pilottone are special synchronization signals recorded by analog audio recorders designed for use in motion picture production, to keep sound and vision recorded on separate media in step. Before the adoption of timecode by the motion picture industry in the late 1980s, pilottone-sync was the basis of all professional magnetic motion picture sound recording systems, whereas most amateur film formats used pre-striped magnetic coating on the film itself for live-sound recording.

Nagra

Nagra

Nagra is a brand of portable audio recorders produced from 1951 in Switzerland. Beginning in 1997 a range of high-end equipment aimed at the audiophile community was introduced, and Nagra expanded the company’s product lines into new markets.

Stefan Kudelski

Stefan Kudelski

Stefan Kudelski was a Polish audio engineer known for creating the Nagra series of professional audio recorders.

Cast

All cast members appear as themselves.

  • Jean Rouch
  • Edgar Morin
  • Marceline Loridan-Ivens
  • Marilù Parolini (as Mary Lou)
  • Angelo
  • Jean-Pierre Sergent
  • Jean (worker)
  • Nadine Ballot (student)
  • Régis Debray (student)
  • Céline (student)
  • Jean-Marc (student)
  • Landry (student)
  • Raymond (student)
  • Jacques (office workers)
  • Simone (office workers)
  • Henri (artist)
  • Madi (artist)
  • Catherine (artist)
  • Sophie (One cover girl)
  • Véro (young girl, uncredited)
  • Maxie (Jacques' wife, uncredited)
  • Jacques Rivette (cameo, scene deleted)

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Jean Rouch

Jean Rouch

Jean Rouch was a French filmmaker and anthropologist.

Edgar Morin

Edgar Morin

Edgar Morin is a French philosopher and sociologist of the theory of information who has been recognized for his work on complexity and "complex thought", and for his scholarly contributions to such diverse fields as media studies, politics, sociology, visual anthropology, ecology, education, and systems biology. As he explains: He holds two bachelors: one in history and geography and one in law. He never did a Ph.D. Though less well known in the anglophone world due to the limited availability of English translations of his over 60 books, Morin is renowned in the French-speaking world, Europe, and Latin America.

Marceline Loridan-Ivens

Marceline Loridan-Ivens

Marceline Loridan-Ivens was a French writer and film director. Her memoir But You Did Not Come Back details her time in Auschwitz-Birkenau. She was married to Joris Ivens.

Marilù Parolini

Marilù Parolini

Maria Ludovica (Marilù) Parolini (1931–2012) was an Italian photographer and screenwriter.

Régis Debray

Régis Debray

Jules Régis Debray is a French philosopher, journalist, former government official and academic. He is known for his theorization of mediology, a critical theory of the long-term transmission of cultural meaning in human society, and for associating with Marxist revolutionary Che Guevara in Bolivia in 1967 and advancing Salvador Allende's presidency in Chile in the early 1970s. He returned to France in 1973 and later held various official posts in the French government.

Jacques Rivette

Jacques Rivette

Jacques Rivette was a French film director and film critic most commonly associated with the French New Wave and the film magazine Cahiers du Cinéma. He made twenty-nine films, including L'amour fou (1969), Out 1 (1971), Celine and Julie Go Boating (1974), and La Belle Noiseuse (1991). His work is noted for its improvisation, loose narratives, and lengthy running times.

Source: "Chronicle of a Summer", Wikipedia, Wikimedia Foundation, (2023, January 25th), https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chronicle_of_a_Summer.

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See also
References
  1. ^ "Silent film tops documentary poll". BBC News. Retrieved 1 August 2014.
External links


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