Live piano accompaniment by Peter Freisinger
Live Musical Accompaniment
Screening on Film
Directed by Jean Renoir.
With Catherine Hessling, Jean Angelo, Werner Krauss.
France, 1926, 35mm, black & white, silent, 110 min.
French language version.

Zola’s celebrated novel provided Renoir with the greatest challenge of his early career. His adaptation reveals the director’s love of artifice and theatrical spectacle and his fascination with class relations. The exploration of psychology within a wide social setting produces a mix of comedy and tragedy. Even at such an early stage in his prolific career, Renoir demonstrates his capacity to handle actors, involving them in psychologically justified mise-en-scène. The lavish production was designed by future director Claude Autant-Lara.

Part of film series

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Treasures from the Harvard Film Archive: A–Z

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The Complete Jean Renoir