LE FANTOME D'HENRI LANGLOIS
HENRI LANGLOIS: THE PHANTOM OF THE CINEMATHEQUE

Director: Jacques Richard
Writer: Jacques Richard

With:
Pierre Cardin
Claude Chabrol
Michel Ciment
Georges Franju
Alfred Hitchcock
Maurice Pialat
Werner Schroeter
Simone Signoret
Jack Valenti

Running time: 210’ (full length), 140’ (edited version
Year of production: France - 2004
Rating: Not rated
Gauge: 35mm, DVD (color B&W)

Distributor: Leisure Time Features


“Langlois was a filmmaker whose work consisted of other people’s films.”
Jacques Richard
“This documentary…expresses the joyful agitation that made it possible for [the Cinematheque] to survive for more than forty years… Jacques Richard gives back to Henri Langlois what France owes Langlois for his contribution to the legacy of cinema.” Cécile-Fleur Brunod, Cahiers du Cinéma

Henri Langlois: The Phantom of the Cinematheque is a richly textured portrait of a visionary who co-founded the most important film archives in 1936. Despite meager financial resources, Henri Langlois was able to save and store thousands of film copies – even during the Nazi occupation of Paris. He was also deeply committed to showing them to the public at the Cinematheque, which became the only place where one could discover classics that were no longer screened, and new films that did not make it to commercial theaters. These screenings, which Langlois presented with buoyancy, helped to turn dozens of young men and women into film lovers and filmmakers. Truffaut and Godard, to name only a few, were tremendously inspired by his film series. In 1972, Langlois painstakingly undertook a new project that was to be his last: he created a museum of cinema to display all the costumes, objects, furniture and sets that he collected. Using old photographs, filmed archives and interviews with dozens of people touched by his generosity as well as his contentious personality, Jacques Richard brings to light both the qualities and faults of a man whose passion for films has not only marked individuals, but also the history of cinema.

 
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