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Alix's Pictures

Alix's Pictures

A Short film by Jean Eustache

Produced by Médiane Films, O.C.C.

Production year : 1980


    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 Producers :

    Médiane Films, O.C.C.


    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)

    Sound Recordist :

    Bruno Charier

    Participants :

    Boris Eustache, Alix Cléo Roubaud

    Directors of Photography :

    Robert Alazraki, Caroline Champetier

    Technical details

    Short film

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    Original French-language productions :


    Nationality :

    100% French (France)

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    Runtime :

    18 min

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    Cesar Awards - French film industry awards - 1982

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


    Best Short Drama Film


    Cesar Awards - French film industry awards - 1982

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


    Cesar Award for Best Short Drama Film