• Dir: Robert Bresson

  • France, 1959, 76min, DCP

  • Cast: Martin LaSalle, Marika Green, Jean Pélégri

Bresson explores Dostoevsky but alters Crime and Punishment nonetheless while probing depths of love and agony. Michel, a minor pickpocket, lives a life of bad choices that also hurt those around him – his loving mother or the faithful Jeanne. While police cannot quite hold onto him, his life is tied to them by every petty crime and temptation, even when he leaves France completely. What will it mean to return? And what will it take for Michel to be redeemed? Celebrated filmmaker Paul Schrader has said that Pickpocket is “as close to perfect as there can be.”

Further reading:
Filmmakers on Bresson – Louis Malle, From Robert Bresson by James Quandt (Toronto: Cinematheque Ontario, 1998)
Filmmakers on Bresson – Paul Schrader, From Robert Bresson by James Quandt (Toronto: Cinematheque Ontario, 1998)



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