Late style
in Julien Duvivier
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This last chapter looks at Duvivier’s late style, and makes the case that his final films, before his death in 1967, retain the classicism of mise en scène, the evocative location shooting, and the core thematic concerns – deception, misanthropy, the fragility of the (male) group, the dangerous woman – that characterise Duvivier’s career.

It will explore how Duvivier continued to return to source texts (Pot-Bouille [1957], Chair de poule [1963]), made chamber pieces (Marie-Octobre [1959], Diaboliquement vôtre [1967]) and Gothic noir (La Chambre ardente [1962]). This period also saw Duvivier re-imagine the coordinates of French noir and the fantasy film, two genres generally overlooked by most critics at the time.

The chapter also evaluates Duvivier’s contributions to the look and logic of the ‘Tradition of Quality’ cinema. He continued to push at the rigid boundaries between commercial and auteur work, working with significant stars (Brigitte Bardot, Danielle Darrieux, Alain Delon and Jean-Pierre Léaud).


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