Claude Chabrol - Rotten Tomatoes

Claude Chabrol



Widely credited as the founding father of the French Nouvelle Vague movement, Claude Chabrol is responsible for a body of work that is as prolific as it is boldly defined. A master of the suspense thriller, Chabrol approaches his subjects with a cold, distanced objectivity that has led at least one critic to liken him to a compassionate but unsentimental god viewing the foibles and follies of his creations. Inherent in all of Chabrol's thrillers is the observation of the clash between bourgeois value and barely-contained, oftentimes violent passion. This clash gives the director's work a melodramatic quality that has allowed him to drift between the realm of the art film and that of popular entertainment.



Born in Paris on June 24, 1930, Chabrol was educated at the University of Paris, where he was a pharmacology student, and at the Ecole Libre des Sciences Politiques. Following some military service, he developed an interest in the cinema and worked for a brief time in the publicity department of 20th Century Fox's French headquarters. Chabrol's true film career began during the 1950s, when he became one of a legendary group of critics for Cahiers du cinéma. Writing alongside the likes of Eric Rohmer (with whom he wrote a groundbreaking study of Alfred Hitchcock), Jean-Luc Godard, Jacques Rivette, and François Truffaut, Chabrol developed theories of authorship that are still influential today, and attempted to revolutionize the cinematic value system.



One of the founders of the Nouvelle Vague (New Wave) movement, Chabrol began his filmmaking career in 1958 as the director, writer, and producer of Le Beau Serge. Modeled after Hitchcock's Shadow of a Doubt, the film charted the visit of an ailing city-dweller (Jean-Claude Brialy) to his hometown, where he is reunited with his childhood friend (Gérard Blain), who is now a self-pitying alcoholic. Their transference of personal guilt, and then, in the words of Chabrol scholar Charles Derry, "exchange of redemption," gave audiences an initial taste of the deeply-psychological situations Chabrol would continue to examine with chilly objectivity throughout his career, and established him as an important new talent.



Chabrol's next film, Les Cousins (1959), proved to be another great critical success, earning a Best Film award at the Berlin Film Festival. Reuniting Jean-Claude Brialy and Gérard Blain as two cousins who are polar opposites, the film continued to develop Chabrol's distanced approach to his subjects, and also introduced the director's use of the names "Charles" and "Paul," names he would continue to use in a number of his films to represent, respectively, the more serious bourgeois man and his pleasure-seeking counterpart. The same year he made Les Cousins, Chabrol released his first color feature, À Double Tour; a crime drama centering on the effects of the murder of a woman upon a dysfunctional family, it contained a measured critique of bourgeois moral values and the social and familial causes of violence.



These films, as well as L'Oeil du malin (1962) -- which revolved around another triangle formed by a bourgeois couple and an outsider -- constituted what many critics refer to as the more "personal" works of Chabrol's early period. When they failed to do well at the box office, he turned to more commercial assignments (such as Le Tigre Aime la Chair Fraiche, 1964) that tended to alienate the critics who had championed his previous efforts. The director again won critical favor in 1968 with Les Biches, a psychological drama that addressed one of the central themes of his work, that of an outsider affecting a relationship between two people. The film, which revolved around the intrusion of a man (Jean-Louis Trintignant) upon a lesbian relationship, was a critical success, and heralded a new, more mature phase of Chabrol's career. The film also starred Stéphane Audran, an actress who was both Chabrol's muse and, for

Filmography

MOVIES

RATING TITLE CREDIT YEAR
73% Gainsbourg: A Heroic Life
  • Music Producer
2011
89% Inspector Bellamy
  • Screenwriter
  • Director
2010
66% Two in the Wave (Deux de la Vague)
  • Actor
2010
No Score Yet Man of Cinema: Pierre Rissient
  • Actor
2008
74% La Fille Coupée en Deux (The Girl Cut in Two) (A Girl Cut in Two)
  • Director
  • Screenwriter
2008
No Score Yet Avida
  • Actor
2006
81% Comedy of Power
  • Screenwriter
  • Director
2006
92% La demoiselle d'honneur (The Bridesmaid)
  • Screenwriter
  • Director
2004
93% Henri Langlois: The Phantom of the Cinematheque
  • Actor
2004
65% The Flower of Evil
  • Screenwriter
  • Director
2003
No Score Yet Chaplin Today: Monsieur Verdoux
  • Actor
2002
84% Merci pour le chocolat
  • Screenwriter
  • Director
2000
No Score Yet The Color of Lies (Au coeur du mensonge)
  • Director
  • Screenwriter
1999
No Score Yet Inspecteur Lavardin
  • Screenwriter
  • Director
1999
No Score Yet Leda (ADouble Tour)
  • Director
  • Screenwriter
1999
68% The Swindle
  • Screenwriter
  • Director
1997
No Score Yet Son of Gascogne
  • Actor
1995
93% La Cérémonie (A Judgement in Stone)
  • Director
  • Screenwriter
1995
100% L'Enfer
  • Director
  • Screenwriter
1994
No Score Yet François Truffaut: Portraits volés (François Truffaut: Stolen Portraits)
  • Actor
1994
No Score Yet L'oeil De Vichy
  • Director
1993
No Score Yet Music for the Movies: Bernard Herrmann
  • Actor
1992
No Score Yet Inspecteur Lavardin
  • Screenwriter
  • Director
1991
89% Madame Bovary
  • Screenwriter
  • Director
1991
No Score Yet Dr. M
  • Director
1990
No Score Yet Jours Tranquils a Clichy
  • Director
  • Screenwriter
1990
80% Story of Women (Une Affaire de Femmes)
  • Director
  • Screenwriter
1989
No Score Yet Je hais les acteurs (I Hate Actors)
  • Lieberman
1988
No Score Yet The Cry Of The Owl (Le Cri du hibou)
  • Director
  • Screenwriter
1987
No Score Yet Masques (Masks)
  • Screenwriter
  • Director
1987
No Score Yet The Horse of Pride(Le Cheval d'orgueil)
  • Director
  • Screenwriter
1985
No Score Yet Poulet au vinaigre (Chicken with Vinegar) (Cop Au Vin)
  • Screenwriter
  • Director
1985
No Score Yet The Blood of Others
  • Director
1984
No Score Yet Polar
  • Theadore Lyssenko
1984
No Score Yet Les voleurs de la nuit (Thieves After Dark)
  • Tartuffe
1983
No Score Yet High Heels
  • Director
1981
No Score Yet Fantomas: l'echafaud magique
  • Director
1980
83% Violette (Violette Nozière)
  • Director
1978
No Score Yet Les Liens de sang (Blood Relatives)
  • Director
  • Screenwriter
1978
No Score Yet L'Animal (Stuntwoman)
  • Himself
1977
No Score Yet Folies Bergere (The Twist)
  • Director
1976
No Score Yet Une partie de plaisir (Pleasure Party) (A Piece of Pleasure)
  • Director
1976
No Score Yet Death Rite (Les magiciens)
  • Director
  • Screenwriter
1976
No Score Yet Dirty Hands
  • Screenwriter
  • Director
1975
No Score Yet The Nada Gang
  • Director
  • Screenwriter
1974
No Score Yet Les Noces Rouges
  • Screenwriter
  • Director
1973
No Score Yet Ten Days' Wonder
  • Director
1972
100% Le Boucher
  • Screenwriter
  • Director
1971
No Score Yet Just Before Nightfall (Juste avant la nuit)
  • Director
  • Screenwriter
1971
100% This Man Must Die (Que la bête meure)
  • Director
  • Screenwriter
1970
No Score Yet La Rupture (The Break Up) (The Breach) (Hallucination)
  • Director
  • Screenwriter
1970
No Score Yet The Unfaithful Wife (La femme infidèle)
  • Director
1969
83% Six in Paris (Paris vu par...)
  • Husband
  • Director
1969
86% Les Biches (Bad Girls) (Girlfriends) (The Does)
  • Screenwriter
  • Director
  • Filmmaker
1968
No Score Yet Who's Got the Black Box?
  • Director
  • Alcibiades
1967
No Score Yet The World's Most Beautiful Swindlers (Les plus belles escroqueries du monde)
  • Screenwriter
  • Director
1967
No Score Yet The Champagne Murders (Le Scandal)
  • Director
1967
No Score Yet Ligne de démarcation, La (Line of Demarcation)
  • Director
1966
No Score Yet An Orchid for the Tiger (Le Tigre se parfume à la dynamite)
  • Director
1965
No Score Yet Marie Chantal contre Dr. Kha (Blue Panther)
  • Director
  • Screenwriter
1965
No Score Yet The Third Lover (L'oeil Du Malin)
  • Screenwriter
  • Director
1963
No Score Yet Bluebeard (Landru)
  • Director
  • Actor
1963
No Score Yet Ophélia
  • Director
1962
No Score Yet Seven Deadly Sins
  • Director
1961
No Score Yet Les godelureaux (Wise Guys)
  • Director
1961
No Score Yet Les Bonnes Femmes (The Good Girls)
  • Screenwriter
  • Director
1960
92% Paris Belongs to Us (Paris Nous Appartient)
  • Actor
1960
93% Les Cousins
  • Screenwriter
  • Director
  • Producer
1959
No Score Yet À double tour (Web of Passion) (Leda)
  • Director
1959
No Score Yet The Sign of Leo (Le Signe du lion)
  • Producer
1959
100% Le Beau Serge
  • Screenwriter
  • Producer
  • Director
  • La Truffe
1958
No Score Yet Fool's Mate (Le Coup du Berger)
  • Actor
  • Screenwriter
1956
No Score Yet Les fantômes du chapelier (The Hatter's Ghost)
  • Director

Quotes from Claude Chabrol's Characters

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