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Alix's Pictures

A Short film by Jean Eustache

Produced by Médiane Films

Production year : 1980

    Synopsis

    Alix Cléo Roubaud, a photographer, describes her images to Eustache’s son Boris. An “essay in the shape of a hoax,” Eustache’s last film wittily questions the relationship between showing and telling as it gradually shifts Alix’s narration out of sync with what we see.

    Participants (2)

    Production and distribution

    Executive Producer :

    Médiane Films

    Subject

    This is a true art film in the literal sense of the word. In an unadorned room, a woman shows a book of her photographs to young boy. Their relationship is brilliantly vague; their ages perfectly spaced so that they could be mother/son, teacher/student, even lovers. The entire film consists of the woman simply describing the photos to the boy. We see each one as she turns the page. The effect is surprisingly gripping, and possibly the reason for this can only be grasped in retrospect: at a certain point - and that point is probably different for each viewer - you realize that the detailed "descriptions" the woman gives for each picture bears no relationship to them. They are, in effect, random bits of descriptive text joined with random photographs. The moment of this realization is as surprising, exhilarating, and chilling as the third act surprise reveal in any good thriller. We immediately question everything we've seen before. What we're left with is what any good work of art leaves us with, more questions, not answers. What is the relationship of words to pictures? What does is mean for a description of something to be "accurate?" Do words "change" how we perceive visuals? If you believe Magritte's "Ceci n'est pas une pipe" opens a profound can of worms, this is a film you must see. Remember the actual name of that Magritte painting? It's called "The Treachery of Images."

    Source : IMDb

    Full credits (3)

    Directors of Photography :

    Robert Alazraki, Caroline Champetier

    Participants :

    Boris Eustache, Alix Cléo Roubaud

    Sound Recordist :

    Bruno Charier

    Technical details

    Short film

    Genres :

    Documentary

    Production language :

    French

    Production country :

    France

    Original French-language productions :

    Unknown

    Nationality :

    100% French (France)

    Production year :

    1980

    Runtime :

    18 min

    Visa number :

    53294

    Visa issue date :

    22/01/1981

    Production formats :

    16mm

    Color type :

    Color

    Aspect ratio :

    1.66

    Audio format :

    Mono

    Director

    Festival Selections

    Cesar Awards - French film industry awards - 1982

    Cesar Awards - French film industry awards (France, 1982)

    Selection

    Best Short Drama Film

    Awards

    Cesar Awards - French film industry awards - 1982

    Cesar Awards - French film industry awards (France, 1982)

    Awards

    Cesar Award for Best Short Drama Film