Bresson Director Critique
Robert Bresson Directing Critique Over the past two weeks we have watched two films directed by Robert Bresson. In both films it was brought to my attention the Bresson’s technique eliminates the idea of “beauty shots. ” He doesn’t use fancy effects or make up for the actors. They are simple and plain both in A Man Escaped and Pickpocket. Bresson doesn’t use dramatic zooms to draw attention. I felt that Bresson was looking to create more of a reality, and I find this admirable. Many directors prefer to use fancy effects feeling as though that will enhance the film. He wanted to enhance his film with the script as pposed to effects.
However, what confused me was when Bresson tried to make it seem as though his characters were thinking in their own head. I sometimes would be unsure if he wanted the characters to seem as though they were going crazy or if he Just simply wanted to expose them thinking in their own minds. For A Man Escaped, I felt that he successfully portrayed the suspense in a Jailbreak. Though the film was confined to the one area of the Jail cell mainly, he still incorporated minor details without major effects. He used minor and simple shots of plates being pushed n an out of the cell to create a suspenseful effect.
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This film also exposed Bresson’s love for showing a person under despair. I found a theme in both films that he does not focus on the success of his characters, but more on how they withstand the situations they are stuck in. This is seen in Pickpocket. The entire film is based off his life of thievery and his struggles with Jeanne. Michel ends up in Jail anyway realizing he is in love with Jeanne. We are left with Michel facing yet another struggle. He did not successfully steal, but instead was caught and stuck in Jail in love with a woman n the other side of the Jail bars.
This continues his theme of despair that he uses in his films. As a viewer I felt bad for him and I felt his despair in the final scene. I had that feeling without any effects, Just a simple final scene of Michel behind bars trying to hold Jeanne. Overall, I felt that Bresson’s interesting techniques are what made his film so unique. His care more for his characters’ struggles as oppose to his editing effects made the stories that much more real. I look forward to watching additional Bresson films in the future to see if he continues these techniques in all of them.