alr

The Rules of the Game
(La règle du jeu)

Screening on Film
Directed by Jean Renoir.
With Marcel Dalio, Nora Grégor, Jean Renoir.
France, 1939, 35mm, black & white, 113 min.
French with English subtitles.
Print source: HFA

In his stinging appraisal of the erotic charades of the French leisure class before World War I, Jean Renoir satirizes the manners and mores of a society near collapse. Banned on its initial release as "too demoralizing" and made available again in its original form only in 1956, The Rules of the Game has come to be regarded by many as one of the greatest films ever made. Centering on a lavish country-house party given by the Marquis de la Chesnaye (Dalio) and his wife (Grégor), the film follows the complicated intrigues of the upper-class guests, which are mirrored by the activities of the servants. Alternating between farce and melodrama, realism and tragedy, Renoir’s masterpiece was described by director Alain Resnais as "the single most overwhelming experience I have ever had in the cinema."

Part of film series

Read more

Treasures from the Harvard Film Archive: N–R

Other film series with this film

Read more

Renoir Reprise

Read more

Classics of World Cinema

Read more

Cinéma Français

Read more

Masterworks of World Cinema

Read more

The Complete Jean Renoir

Read more

A Tribute to Steve Livernash