A film of remarkable restraint, this is the perfect introduction to the understated, elegant cinema of Robert Bresson.
Lyon, 1943: Fontaine, a French Resistance fighter imprisoned by the Nazis for blowing up a bridge, plots his escape from Fort Montluc.
The simple story, based on the reallife memoirs of André Devigny, is raised to the level of cinematic significance by Bresson’s removal of any obvious filmmaking mechanics, leaving nothing but the most streamlined of narratives.
Restricting the action solely to Fontaine and his immediate, cramped, emotionless surroundings encourages an unnerving claustrophobia.
This, combined with subtle connections between the visual and the aural, the mundane and metaphysical, helps to create a truly resonant experience.