Tuesday, August 11, 2009
filmmaker jean renoir (1894-1979) was born in the artistic neighborhood of paris called montmartre. as the second of three sons of the painter pierre-august renoir, he and his brothers must have breathed beauty from birth.
i saw my first renoir film (his second) just last night. i watched the 1926 silent film 'nana.' i chose this particular title as i am a big fan of the novel of the same name written by emile zola. while watching the movie i was amazed, once again, by how brilliant silent cinema is. the sets and costumes are gorgeous, it's true, but it is the expressions on the faces of the players that are the most wonderful aspect.
the star of 'nana' was catherine hessling. she was the first wife of jean and also the last model of pierre-auguste. wow. her performance was absolutely unique and i am sure will prove to be unforgettable for me. this tiny woman was personality personified.