Jean Renoir - Rotten Tomatoes

Jean Renoir



The son of the painter Auguste Renoir, Jean Renoir became one of France's most important and respected filmmakers during the middle of the 20th century. A Philosophy and Math student, Renoir became a cavalryman, but was invalided out of the army before World War I. He subsequently joined the infantry; injured in that service, he became a pilot. Later, he married a model and aspiring actress, and, following the death of his father and the acquisition of an inheritance, set up his own production company to produce movies for his wife. Renoir learned from these early experiences of financing movies and watching other films, and became a director in 1924. He later took directing assignments from other producers as a means of supporting himself, augmented by occasional acting roles.



With the advent of sound, Renoir's career was quickly made with a series of profitable films, including La Chienne (1931), a savage and dark drama about a man's self-destruction, which was later remade by Fritz Lang as Scarlet Street. Renoir's subsequent films, including The Lower Depths (1936) and Grand Illusion (1937), were among the finest made in France before the war, and were well acknowledged at the time of their release; the latter became an international hit. However, Rules of the Game (1939), with its strong criticism of French society, struck a raw nerve with critics and the public alike on the eve of World War II, and was quickly withdrawn from distribution and subsequently re-edited. Renoir served in the film unit of the French army at the outbreak of World War II, but was fortunate enough to get to Lisbon and then America after the fall of France. He was later put under contract at 20th Century Fox, where he made the rural drama Swamp Water (1941), a beautiful, lyrical, and poetic story of injustice and vengeance. At RKO, he made the patriotic drama -- and possibly the best the studio ever produced -- This Land Is Mine (1943), and returned to rural American subjects for The Southerner (1945), released by United Artists. Diary of a Chambermaid (1946) was another independent production, while Woman on the Beach (1947), a dark romantic drama, was done for RKO. Renoir's first post-American film (and his first in color), The River (1951), was financed by a Beverly Hills florist, but shot in India. Based upon a story by Rumer Godden, it told of the coming of age of three young women in India and received tremendous international acclaim, but relatively little public attention, although later became one of his most popular films.



His next films, The Golden Coach (1952) and French Can-Can (1955), marked Renoir's return to Europe and France, respectively, and to profitable filmmaking. The early '60s saw the restoration and re-release -- to belated acclaim as a masterpiece -- of Rules of the Game. His later films were less successful and more modestly produced, and made extensive use of television techniques, the most popular of which was The Little Theater of Jean Renoir (1969), which was originally made for TV. Throughout his career, Renoir's style embraced a multitude of genres, and its permutations make it almost impossible to characterize. However, his social realism was usually on-target, as La Chienne showed to his advantage and Rules of the Game presented so disturbingly to the French public. Renoir died in 1979.

Filmography

MOVIES

RATING TITLE CREDIT YEAR
No Score Yet Une vie sans joie (Backbiters)
  • Director
  • Screenwriter
2013
No Score Yet Louis Lumière
  • Actor
2012
No Score Yet Le testament du Docteur Cordelier (Experiment in Evil)
  • Director
  • Screenwriter
2012
No Score Yet The Little Match Girl (La Petite marchande d'allumettes)
  • Director
2000
No Score Yet Jean Renoir, The Boss
  • Actor
1985
No Score Yet The Little Theatre of Jean Renoir (Le petit théâtre de Jean Renoir)
  • Actor
  • Director
1974
No Score Yet Carola
  • Director
1973
100% The Elusive Corporal
  • Director
1962
71% Le Déjeuner sur l'Herbe (Picnic on the Grass)
  • Director
1959
87% The River
  • Screenwriter
  • Director
1959
100% The Doctor's Horrible Experiment (Le Testament du Docteur Cordelier)
  • Director
1959
77% Elena and Her Men
  • Director
  • Screenwriter
1957
100% French Cancan
  • Director
  • Screenwriter
1956
100% The Golden Coach (Le Carrosse d'or)
  • Screenwriter
  • Director
1953
No Score Yet The Woman on the Beach
  • Screenwriter
  • Director
1947
No Score Yet Diary of a Chambermaid
  • Director
  • Actor
  • Screenwriter
1946
91% The Southerner
  • Screenwriter
1945
71% This Land Is Mine
  • Producer
  • Director
1943
No Score Yet Swamp Water
  • Director
1941
98% The Rules of the Game (La règle du jeu)
  • Screenwriter
  • Director
  • Octave
1939
97% La Grande illusion (Grand Illusion)
  • Screenwriter
  • Director
1938
93% La Bête Humaine (Judas Was a Woman)(The Human Beast)
  • Director
  • Screenwriter
  • Cabuche the Poacher
1938
No Score Yet The Spanish Earth (This Spanish Earth)
  • Narrator
1937
88% La Marseillaise
  • Director
1937
No Score Yet La vie est à nous
  • Director
  • Patron
1936
100% Le Crime de Monsieur Lange (The Crime of Monsieur Lange)
  • Director
1936
100% Partie de Campagne (A Day in the Country)
  • Director
  • Pere Poulain
  • Screenwriter
1936
88% Les Bas-fonds (The Lower Depths) (Underground) (Underworld)
  • Director
1936
100% Toni
  • Screenwriter
  • Director
1934
No Score Yet Madame Bovary
  • Director
1933
No Score Yet Chotard And Company (Chotard Et Cie)
  • Screenwriter
  • Director
1933
100% Boudu Saved From Drowning (Bondé sauvé des eaux)
  • Screenwriter
  • Director
1932
No Score Yet Night at the Crossroads (La Nuit Du Carrefour)
  • Screenwriter
  • Director
1932
No Score Yet Baby's Laxative (On Purge Bebe)
  • Director
1931
100% La Chienne
  • Screenwriter
  • Director
1931
No Score Yet The Sad Sack (Tire Au Flanc)
  • Director
1928
No Score Yet Sur un air de Charleston
  • Director
  • Actor
1927
No Score Yet Nana
  • Screenwriter
  • Director
1926
No Score Yet La Fille de L'eau (Whirlpool of Fate)
  • Director
  • Producer
1924

Quotes from Jean Renoir's Characters

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