portraits

28 05 2009

LA PASSION DE JEANNE D’ARC was produced a silent film in france in 1928, directed by CARL THEODOR DREYER. even for today standards the film is a masterpiece, in acting – especially the main role played by RENEE JEANNE FALCONETTI, as well as for the visuals. the camera concentrates mainly on the actor’s facial features. dreyer shot a lot of the film in close-up and did not allow his actors to wear makeup, the better to tell the story through their expressions. this choice was made possible through use of the newly developed PANCHROMATIC FILM. for years the original versiion of the film was believed to be lost after a fire destroyed the master negative. only in 1981 another complete print of dreyer’s version was found. this version is now available on DVD. I highly recommend this film, as you can see in these few screen captures, there are ‘real’ characters portrayed in this film. it is a piece of art.

jeanne d'arc comp

you can order the DVD here

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One response

1 06 2009
Steve Brown

What an interesting choice of posts! Dreyer’s Passion of Joan of Arc (and perhaps Griffith’s Orphans of the Storm) almost singlehandedly proved the effectiveness of the close-up shot in contradiction to the stage bound mise en scene of early silent films.

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