Friday, 5 October 2018

On French Blu-ray - David Hare welcomes two of Max Ophuls 30s masterpieces SANS LENDEMAIN and YOSHIWARA

The four screens (above) are from Gaumont's gorgeous new Blu-ray of Sans Lendemain from 1939, from a 2K restoration made in 2016. The screens show Edwige Feuillere as "Babs" and Georges Rigaud as Georges, as well as one of Bab's regulars at La Sirène where she does nude dancing to Allan Gray's amazing hotcha score.
The last six screens (below) are from Max's almost unknown Yoshiwara from 1937, another of the three Gaumont Ophuls rescue-retros, this one completed with CNC in 2017. 
In Max's very loose Butterfly adaptation/variation, Michiko Tanaka plays the lead as Kohana, Pierre Richard-Willm does the "Pinkerton" part as Serge, and the great Sessue Hayakawa is Ysamo, "a Coolie". 
These two movies, plus an equally beautiful new 2K of Max's last film in France before the war, De Mayerling a Sarajevo, form a sublime trio, being half his 30s pre-war French output. Sadly for Anglophone viewers the discs are not English subtitled, but only with français Hard-of-hearing titles (descriptive). 
Perhaps, one day, a British label or even an American one might pick these up. They are Max Ophuls (below), after all, or doesn't that matter anymore?

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