EYES WITHOUT A FACE (Georges Franju, 1959)

I. POETIC HORROR. Along with Henri Langlois, Georges Franju in 1936 founded the world’s most celebrated film archive, La Cinémathèque française. (Both two years earlier had co-directed a short 16mm film, Le Métro.) After the war, Franju became a solo artist, launching his career with the short documentary Le sang des bêtes (Blood of the […]

THE BLUM AFFAIR (Erich Engel, 1948)

The Blum Affair (Affaire Blum—pronounced Bloom), a riveting postwar film from the German Democratic Republic, that is, East Germany, is based on an actual case and trial in 1926 in Magdeburg. This was during the Weimar Republic, the constitutional government with which Germany replaced its monarchy in very early 1919, only to see its democratic […]

BOOMERANG! (Elia Kazan, 1947)

Boomerang!, whose direction won for Elia Kazan the prize of the New York Film Critics Circle, is an excellent film—all in all, probably Kazan’s best. Based on actual events that were described in the article “The Perfect Case,” by Anthony Abbot, in Reader’s Digest, it portrays a small-town murder, that of a beloved Protestant minister, […]