Over the course of his career, the critic turned producer and director (and sometime actor) Barbet Schroeder was a fellow-traveller of the Nouvelle Vague, and a director of tony, tawdry Hollywood pleasures. He’s made dramas exploring the worlds of free love and S&M, documentaries that have involved spending considerable amounts of time in the company of General Idi Amin Dada and “terror’s advocate” Jacques VergÃ¨s, and dramas based on the lives of Charles Bukowski and Claus von Bulow. And, of course, the greatest movie ever made, Single White Female.
On Inside the Actors Studio, Jennifer Jason Leigh’s Barbet Schroeder story was that, on SWF, after they’d done a few takes and gotten the scene the way he wanted it, he’d say to the actors (cue hand wave and bon vivant French accent), “One more… for the pleasure.” I can only picture a guy who’s wry and poker-faced in the presence of any and all perversity. (“I’m addicted to reading the papers and getting stories and juicy, real-life detail,” he says in the above-linked profile.)
Anyway, today through the 21st BAM is showing his movies, because they’re lots of fun, obvs. We begin with a movie he produced, the 1965 French New Wave omnibus Six in Paris, which Schroeder produced. (It’s basically the proto-Paris j’taime, in which he acted, coincidentally.) It’ll be given a weeklong run; the L’s Ben Sutton reviews the film here.