Wednesday, April 23, 2014

The Best Old Movies on a Big Screen This Week

Posted By , , , and on Wed, Apr 23, 2014 at 9:15 AM

Page 3 of 5

San Clemente, Raymond Depardons documentary
San Clemente (1982)
Directed by Raymond Depardon
When the filmmakers first enter Hospital San Clemente, they're immediately told to leave. It's February 1980, and cameraman Depardon and sound recorder Sophie Ristelhueber have come to a Venetian island’s 150 year-old mental institution, which will soon shutter, in order to film its residents going about their everyday lives. The two stay despite resistance from doctors and patients who question their reasons for being there, and turn defiance into agency by letting the patients guide them and help them select what they will show. Depardon, a longtime still photographer as well as a documentarian, records the place (both a prison and a hospital) through clear black-and-white camerawork that soaks the air with light. San Clemente’s patients emerge in long scenes of corridor-wandering as well as in brief, intimate moments of regarding their visitors. The people onscreen appear beautiful, and then eventually vanish from sight. Aaron Cutler (Apr 25 at Lincoln Center, part of its Art of the Real series)

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