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La Jetée

Screening on Film
Free Admission
Directed by Chris Marker.
With Hélène Chatelain, Davos Hanich, Jacques Ledoux.
France, 1962, 35mm, black & white, 29 min.
French with English subtitles.

One of his only extended forays into fiction, La Jetée is constructed (with one crucial, brief exception) from still photographs that are combined in serial fashion with voiceover narration and music. The result is one of cinema’s most compelling works, a love story set in a bleak future and involving time travel and memory. After the destruction of civilization by war, a member of the underground survivor community, haunted by glimpses of a barely recalled face, is sent by scientists back to the past to look for a key to humanity’s salvation. There he finds a lover, love of the world when it was still alive, and traces of his earlier self. This ecstatic, lyrical film conveys the pain and weight of modern history and the intense power of images.

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