Unanimously celebrated as an authentic representation of French railroad workers' resistance against the Germans during the Occupation, René Clément's La Bataille du rail (The Battle of the Rails, 1945) was a valuable piece of ideological capital in the wake of France's liberation. Through a close reading of the film's production and reception, this article shows that the film's heroic blueprinting of the Resistance was the result of mediation between two opposing points of view: that of the Marxist Left, which sought to portray the Resistance as belonging to the working class, and that of the Gaullists, who were intent on promoting the myth of an idealized "True France" without class or ideological divisions and united in its opposition to the Germans.
Political and Narrative Ambiguities in La Bataille du Rail
Psychoanalysis, Cinema, History: Personal and National Loss in René Clément's Forbidden Games
What facilitates the psychic process of grieving a traumatic loss, and what happens when that process is blocked? Forbidden Games is, on one level, an intimate film about childhood trauma. When viewed from a psychoanalytic perspective informed by concepts such as introjection and pathological mourning, however, it emerges as a complex allegory that reflects, through its narrative and filmic elements, on the sociocultural and historical dynamics of France's troubled response to the loss of its identity as a democracy during World War II. The film also reflects on the even more shameful history of the rise of French anti-Semitism under the Vichy regime and France's history of silencing or repressing the drama of its willing collaboration with the Nazis' Final Solution. Private trauma thus screens public, political trauma as Clément's film becomes both a medium for sociocultural commentary and a memorial to loss that could not be buried or mourned.
John Paul Stadler and Brian Bergen-Aurand
criminality. Chapter 3 reads René Clément's Plein soleil ( Purple Noon , 1960 ), an early adaptation of Patricia Highsmith's The Talented Mr. Ripley (1955) , as a triangulated application of homoerotic desire, à la Eve Sedgwick's Between Men , but also
The Origins of the Stanley Hoffmann We Knew
Some Comparisons on his Vichy Years with My Family Story
chaos: René Clément’s Forbidden Games . Mrs. Hoffmann knew the danger: after the Anschluss her brothers had fled Vienna for Paris, then to England, the US or Australia, though one invalid brother stayed in Paris, where Vichy police later rounded him up