The great director Jacques Rivette, who began his career as a writer at Cahiers du Cinéma and was part of the legendary French New Wave, has died at 87.
Rivette’s films were less-seen (and often less-appreciated) than those of his famous contemporaries. BAMcinématek did its part to correct that with its recent screenings of “the holy grail” of cinema, the 750-minute “Out 1: Noli me Tangere” (1970).
Today’s edition of Fandor’s Keyframe features excerpts and links to essential writing about Rivette and his work.
(I know this is a story I’ve told–and written about–before.) I photographed Jacques Rivette when he accompanied “Va Savoir” to the 39th New York Film Festival. It was two weeks after 9/11 and Greenwich Street, running south, was closed to most vehicular traffic, enforced by a wide barricade and a bunch of friendly cops, whom I saw each time I walked home from farther uptown. I assumed Rivette was in good shape, able to walk the three blocks to my studio, but uncertain, I visited the sergeant and secured permission for the car service to bring him, Jeanne Balibar and Hélène de Fougerolles to me.
But they arrived on foot, commenting on the cobblestones and asking about a restaurant they’d passed (a favorite, Stacey Sosa’s Estancia 460).
Annoyed at the broken promise, I walked to Canal Street after the shoot. “What happened? I though we discussed letting the car down the street.”
“Did you see those women?” asked one of New York’s finest, grinning. (Duh, obviously.) “We just wanted to get a better look, see them walk.”