Hiroshima Mon Amour wikipedia

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Hiroshima mon amour

Original 1959 movie poster

Directed byAlain Resnais

Produced bySamy HalfonAnatole Dauman

Written byMarguerite Duras

StarringEmmanuelle RivaEiji OkadaStella DassasPierre Barbaud

Music byGeorges DelerueGiovanni Fusco

CinematographyMichio TakahashiSacha Vierny

Edited byJasmine ChasneyHenri ColpiAnne Sarraute

Distributed byPath Films

Release dates 10June1959

Running time90 minutes

CountryFrance / Japan / Mexico


Hiroshima mon amour(French pronunciation:[ioima m.namu],Hiroshima My Love;Japanese:Nijyojikan'nojji,Twenty-four-hour affair) is a 1959drama filmdirected by Frenchfilm directorAlain Resnais, with a screenplay byMarguerite Duras. It is the documentation of an intensely personal conversation between a French-Japanese couple about memory and forgetfulness. It was a major catalyst for theNouvelle Vague(French New Wave), making highly innovative use of miniatureflashbacksto create a uniquelynonlinear storyline.


[hide] 1Plot 2Cast 3Production 4Reception 5Film references 6Cultural errors 7In popular culture 7.1Music 7.2Film 8References 9External linksPlot[edit]Hiroshima mon amourconcerns a series of conversations (or one enormous conversation) over a 36-hour long period between a French actress (Emmanuelle Riva), referred to asShe, and a Japanese architect (Eiji Okada), referred to asHe.They have had a brief relationship, and are now separating. The two debate memory and forgetfulness as She prepares to depart, comparing failed relationships with the bombing of Hiroshima and the perspectives of people inside and outside the incidents. The early part of the film recounts, in the style of a documentary but narrated by the so far unidentified characters, the effects of theHiroshima bombon August 6, 1945, in particular the loss of hair and the complete anonymity of the remains of some victims. He had beenconscriptedinto the Japanese army and his family was in Hiroshima on that day.

The film uses highly structured repetitive dialogue, mostly consisting of Her narration, with Him interjecting to say she is wrong, lying or confused, or to deny and contradict her statements with the film's famous line "You are not endowed with memory." Although He disagrees and rejects many of the things She says, he pursues her constantly. The film is peppered with dozens of brief flashbacks to Her life; in her youth in the French townNevers, she was shamed and had her head shaved as punishment for having alove affair with a German soldier, which she juxtaposes with the loss of the hair "which the women of Hiroshima will find has fallen out in the morning."

Cast[edit] Emmanuelle Rivaas Elle

Eiji Okadaas Lui

Bernard Fressonas L'Allemand

Stella Dassas as La Mre

Pierre Barbaud as Le Pre

Production[edit]According toJames Monaco, Resnais was originally commissioned to make a short documentary about theatomic bomb, but spent several months confused about how to proceed because he did not want to recreate his 1955HolocaustdocumentaryNight and Fog. He later went to his producer and joked that the film could not be done unlessMarguerite Duraswas involved in writing the screenplay.[1]The film was a co-production by companies from bothJapanandFrance. The producers stipulated that one main character must be French and the other Japanese, and also required that the film be shot in both countries employing film crews comprising technicians from each.[1]Reception[edit]Hiroshima mon amourearned anOscarnomination for screenwriterMarguerite Durasas well as theFipresciInternational Critics' Prize at the1959 Cannes Film Festival,[2]where the film was excluded from the official selection because of its sensitive subject matter of nuclear bombs as well as to avoid upsetting the U.S. government.[3]It won the prestigiousGrand Prixof theBelgian Film Critics Associationin 1960.[4]In 2002, it was voted by the international contributors of the French film magazinePositifto be one of the top 10 films since 1952, the first issue of the magazine.

Hiroshima mon amourhas been described as "TheBirth of a Nationof theFrench New Wave" by American criticLeonard Maltin.[5]New Wave filmmakerJean-Luc Godarddescribed the film's inventiveness as "FaulknerplusStravinsky" and celebrated its originality, calling it "the first film without any cinematic references".[6]FilmmakerEric Rohmersaid, "I think that in a few years, in ten, twenty, or thirty years, we will know whetherHiroshima mon amourwas the most important film since the war, the first modern film of sound cinema".[7]Among the film's innovations is Resnais' experiments with very brief flashback sequences intercut into scenes to suggest the idea of a brief flash of memory. Resnais later used similar effects inThe War Is OverandLast Year at Marienbad.

It was shown as part of the Cannes Classics section of the2013 Cannes Film Festival,[8]as well as 9 screenings at theHarvard Film Archivebetween November 28th-December 13th, 2014.[9]Film references[edit]In his book on Resnais, James Monaco ends his chapter onHiroshima mon amourby claiming that the film contains a reference to the classic 1942 filmCasablanca:

Here is an 'impossible' love story between two people struggling with the imagery of a distant war. At the end of this romantic, poignant movie about leave takings and responsibilities, the two fateful lovers meet in a cafe. Resnais gives us a rare establishing shot of the location. 'He' is going to meet 'She' for the last time at a bar called 'The Casablanca' - right here in the middle of Hiroshima! It's still the same old story. A fight for love and glory. A case of do or die. The world will always welcome lovers. As time goes by.[1]

Cultural errors[edit]InJapan Journals: 1947-2004, film historianDonald Richietells in an entry for 25 January 1960 of seeing the film inTokyoand remarks on various distracting (for the Japanese) cultural errors which Resnais made. He notes, for example, that theJapanese-languagearrival and departure time announcements in the train scenes bear no relation to the time of day in which the scenes are set. Also, people pass throughnorencurtains into shops which are supposedly closed. The noren is a traditional sign that a shop is open for business and is invariably taken down at closing time.[10]In popular culture[edit]Music[edit] The film has inspired several songs. One called 'Hiroshima mon amour' was written byJohn FoxxandBilly Currie, and initially recorded and performed by their bandUltravox!in 1977. One recorded version of the song is a romanticelectronicballad, notable for showcasing an early use of theRolandTR-77drum machinein popular music. Ultravox! also recorded a different arrangement of the song, in an aggressivepunkstyle. This version was covered by the bandThe Churchon their all-covers, garage-inspired album "A Box of Birds" (1999). Another version combining both approaches was recorded byJan Lintonon hisKing Records (Japan)released Japan-only album "Planet Japan" in 2004. The song is still performed live byJohn Foxxwith his current groupJohn Foxx and the Maths.

In 2003, theNew York-basedno waveband My Favorite released "Burning Hearts," which draws upon the main characters in the film.

In 2002,Bryan Ferryreleased the albumFranticwhich includes the song "Hiroshima", where the chorus includes the full sentence of "Hiroshima Mon Amour".

In 1997,Karen Mokreleased an album which includes the songLove in Hiroshima(Chinese:).

Film[edit] In 2001,Japanesefilm directorNobuhiro Suwadirected aremake, titledH Story.[11] In 2003,Iranianfilm director Bahman Pour-Azar releasedWhere Or When. The 85-minute film places Pour-Azar's characters in the same circumstances as Resnais' nearly a half century earlier. However, the current global tension of today's world is the backdrop instead of post-war Hiroshima. When screening the film, Stuart Alson, who founded theNew York International Independent Film and Video Festival, said that the piece was "a parallel line of work with the French masterpieceHiroshima mon amour".[12]References[edit]1. ^Jump up to:abcMonaco, James (1979). Alain Resnais. New York: Oxford University Press.ISBN0-19-520037-3.

2. Jump up^"Festival de Cannes: Hiroshima Mon Amour".festival-cannes.com. Retrieved2009-02-14.

3. Jump up^Lanzoni, Remi FournierFrench Cinema: From Its Beginnings to the Present, London: Continuum International Publishing Group Ltd., 2004, p229

4. Jump up^""The Artist" reoit le grand prix de l'Union de la critique de cinma".rtl.be(in French). Retrieved2012-07-22.

5. Jump up^Maltin, Leonard (1995). "Alain Resnais".Leonard Maltin's Movie Encyclopedia. Plume. p.744.ISBN978-0-452-27058-9.Resnais's first 35 mm featureHiroshima mon amour(1959) in 1946, he made a 16 mm featureOuvert pour cause d'inventaire dealt with the nature of history and memory, and deviated from traditional notions of narrative time as it recounted a fleeting liaison between a French actress and Japanese architect. Its sexual candor and provocative ideas, wedded to a dazzlingly sophisticated visual style, madeHiroshima, Mon Amourthe New Wave'sThe Birth of a Nationand it deservedly won the Cannes Film Festival International Critics Prize.

6. Jump up^in Michael S. Smith, "Hiroshima Mon Amour", DVD release review in Popmatters.com7. Jump up^Kent Jones, "Time Indefinite", essay for theCriterion CollectionDVD release. Accessed 23 May 2007

8. Jump up^"Cannes Classics 2013 line-up unveiled".Screen Daily. Retrieved2013-04-30.

9. Jump up^"Harvard Film Archive Detailed Calendar Page for "Hiroshima Mon Amour".".Harvard Film Archive. Retrieved2015-01-28.