La Jetée

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(1962, directed by Chris Marker)

- inducted 2013 -

"La Jetée visualizes the original looper, an unnamed tragic emissary of time moving through forgotten memories to help save the world. What he discovers is potential life reborn and certain death, frozen images 'oozing like confessionals' representing versions of the past, present, and future intertwined by fate. His visual scars produce the opportunity for hope, but in rebelling against trauma one simply creates more of the same. The subconscious state teases individuality and freedom, even if there are personal moments of joy to be found within the deception."

"Visually, Chris Marker's film is an astoundingly frank depiction of how trauma defines itself by imagery, and how it can transcend the laws of science and logic. Each image carries a specific weight and resonance, and when one begins moving it's something akin to a revolution. In the end, La Jetée is one of the great cinematic tragedies in that it captures all the world's cries and whispers through one man's ultimate sacrifice."

~ Glenn Heath

Principal cast: Jean Négroni, Hélène Chatelain, Davos Hanich, Jacques Ledoux, André Heinrich, Jacques Branchu, Pierre Joffroy, Étienne Becker, Philbert von Lifchitz, Ligia Borowczyk, Janine Klein, William Klein, Germano Faccetti
Screenplay and dialogue by Chris Marker
Produced by Anatole Dauman
Cinematography by Jean Chiabaut, Chris Marker
Film editing by Jean Ravel
Sound by Antoine Bonfanti

France
Duration: 28 minutes
Languages: French, German
Filmed in black and white
Sound mix: Mono
Aspect ratio: 1.66:1

Produced by Argos Films
Premiered in France on 16 February 1962

Awards and honors:
- Prix Jean Vigo for Best Short Film, 1963 (won)