120th anniversary of Tarkovsky's favorite director

On September 25, 1901, in the town of Bromont-Lamotte, which is located in the very center of France, a son, Robert, was born to the family of Leon and Marie-Elisabeth Bresson. Some sources give other dates of birth of the future great director: December 25, 1901, or even September 25, 1907. But the biographer of Robert Bresson, who has devoted more than a dozen years to the study of his work, Alan Pavelin, insists on the date September 25, 1901. We will believe him. In addition, there is a documented act that on December 21, 1926, Robert Bresson got married. I believe that it is more appropriate for someone from a petty-bourgeois Catholic family of doctors and notaries to marry at 25, rather than 19.

Robert Bresson during an interview with French television, 1984.

Robert Bresson graduated from the Paris School named after Joseph Lacanal, then studied philosophy at the university. However, after completing his education, he, in accordance with his hobby, began to work as a photographer and painter. This occupation led him to the cinema, in which he initially acted as a screenwriter and director of comedy short films.

Un condamné à mort s'est échappé ou Le vent souffle où il veut (A Man Escaped). 1956. Movie's Rating - 8,507; 323rd Rank in the Golden Thousand.

At the very beginning of the Second World War, Robert Bresson, being a soldier of the French army, was captured by the Germans. The experience of almost a year and a half in captivity was subsequently used by Bresson in the creation of his most commercially successful film "Un condamné à mort s'est échappé ou Le vent souffle où il veut (A Man Escaped)" (1956). But his first full-length feature film - "Les anges du péché (Angels of Sin)" - Robert Bresson shot in 1943.

Journal d'un curé de campagne (Diary of a Country Priest). 1950. Movie's Rating - 7,914; 845th Rank in the Golden Thousand.

During his rather long - 40 years - career as a feature films director, Robert Bresson has shot only 13 full-length feature films. Four of these thirteen films were included in the Golden Thousand. Based on this indicator, Robert Bresson is included in the list of the 100 greatest directors of world cinema, compiled by FilmGourmand.

Au hasard Balthazar (Balthazar). 1966. Movie's Rating - 7,865; 902nd Rank in the Golden Thousand.

Alan Pavelin, mentioned above, described Robert Bresson as follows: "He is the most idiosyncratic and uncompromising of all major filmmakers, in the sense that he always tried to create precisely what he wanted without surrendering to considerations of commerce, audience popularity, or people’s preconceptions of what cinema should be."

Mouchette. 1967. Movie's Rating - 7,845; 934th Rank in the Golden Thousand.

Andrey Tarkovsky, who included two films by Robert Bresson in the list of his ten favorite films, formulated his attitude to this director as follows: "For me, Robert Bresson is an example of a true cinematographer. "Journal d'un curé de campagne (Diary of a Country Priest)" I consider a great film. Bresson makes pictures when he has a need for it. Plans are dictated to him by his artist's conscience, his idea. He does not create for himself, not for recognition, not for praise. He does not think about whether they will understand him or not, how the press will evaluate him, whether they will watch his film or not. He obeys only some higher and objective laws of art, he is alien to all vain worries, and Pushkin's tragic "the poet and the rabble" is far from him. Therefore, Bresson's movies have simplicity, nobility, and amazing dignity. Bresson is the only one who, having managed to withstand the test of fame, remained himself."

Un condamné à mort s'est échappé ou Le vent souffle où il veut (A Man Escaped).

On the day of the 120th anniversary of the birth of the great director, we would like to remind fans of his work with shots from his best films included in the Golden Thousand.

Journal d'un curé de campagne (Diary of a Country Priest).