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Author: Sue Harris

Whether one 'likes' his work or not, Bertrand Blier is undisputably an important and influential presence in modern French film-making. For those who would understand the nature and function of popular French culture, it has now become impossible to ignore his work. Blier's career began in 1957 as an assistant stagiaire, as it was still relatively conventional in the French film-making tradition. This book hopes to be able to start formulating some answers to the puzzle that is Blier's work. The aim is to identify strategies for finding one's way through a body of work, which has disconcerted spectators, to identify some reference points that the curious spectator can use as a map to navigate through Blier's preferred themes and stylistic techniques. One way of understanding the system of dramatic cohesion that unifies the action of Blier's films is to read it in terms of an 'absurdist' conception. The comic momentum of Blier's films relies on the elaboration of a system of images which might be termed 'festive-ludic' or 'anarchocomic'. His deliberate attempt to go beyond the conventional limits of gender representation is as important example of the many processes of narrative subversion. Discussions reveal that the key tropes around which Blier's work is structured point to an engagement with a tradition of popular discourse, translated into both content and form, which finds an echo in the wider cultural apparatus of the post-1968 period and which is all the more significant for its location in mainstream visual culture.

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Will Higbee

chapters has also been to establish Kassovitz as a director who (in his various guises) consistently occupies the position of a ‘popular’ filmmaker, and whose films reflect the increasing prominence of youth at the heart of contemporary popular French culture. All his films are thus concerned with the popular – its form and function in contemporary French culture. His fracture sociale trilogy

in Mathieu Kassovitz
Abstract only
Sue Harris

important and influential presence in modern French film-making, and for those who would understand the nature and function of popular French culture, it has now become impossible to ignore his work. He may well be a maverick figure, but his abiding presence and obvious creativity inevitably speak for themselves, and point to the director as a figure worthy of the same critical attention as canonical luminaries such as Truffaut

in Bertrand Blier
Sue Harris

French tradition of satire of which Rabelais is simply one of the earliest exponents, and are intrinsically bound up with the popular modern manifestation of this in the subversive popular cultural apparatus which anticipated, commented upon, and gave momentum to much of the mood of post-1968 popular French culture. Blier’s adaptation of elements of these popular subversive forms into a cinematic expression, and the very

in Bertrand Blier
Guy Austin

l’école ou lois des armes, Cahiers du cinéma , November, 17–19 . Thomas, L. (2001) , The representation of childhood in Sandrine Veysset’s Y aura-t-il de la neige à Noël? , in L. Mazdon (ed.), France on film: reflections on popular French culture , London, Wallflower, 81–93 . Tobin, Y. (1995) , Etat des (ban

in Contemporary French cinema