Zazie dans le métro (1960) – Louis Malle
I viewed the French film Zazie dans le métro (1960, an adaptation of the Raymond Queneau novel) by Louis Malle yesterday, and once again I enjoyed the DVD extras (can DVD extras be considered as secondary sources or paratexts?) more than the film itself. The film is a typical nouvelle vague product (Philippe Noiret self-referentially explaining in the scene where the taxi meter spins fast forward: “Qu’est ce que tu veux, c’est la Nouvelle Vague” (eng: “What do you know, this is the Nouvelle Vague“)).
Visual experience: a pop art styled colorful bonanza of surreal visual gags. Noiret’s wife Albertine is played by the beautiful Carla Marlier and one of the protagonists is Paris (the Eiffel tower scenes!) itself.
The DVD extras feature an interview with Philippe Collin, first assistant director, in which he explains the influence of Tex Avery (he did his thesis on Avery) and the influence of American photographer William Klein (Mr. Freedom, see picture below) and his focus on graphic design, advertising neon, etc…
Publicity shot for Mr. Freedom (1970) – William Klein, reproduced on the cover of Midi/minuit fantastique nr. 20 (clicking on the picture brings you to the Midi/minuit fantastique page, where all the covers are reproduced)
Final assessment: Psychological realism 2/10, Oddity value: 7/10, feelgood factor: 7/10 (I did get bored a bit.)