Presented at the museum in May 1976, Le joli mai is one of Chris Marker's great but lesser-known essay films. Mixing voice-over commentary with a series of interviews with Parisians from all walks of life, the film was made possible by the new, lightweight, synch-sound equipment that allowed for spontaneous filming. It moves rapidly between questions about personal happiness to those of national and global politics — from the new consumerism to union organizing, women's rights, colonial relationships, and the French-Algerian War that had just ended. – Irina Leimbacher
Poetry Meets Politics: The Essay — Chris Marker's Le joli mai
Thursday, April 01, 2010, 7:00 p.m.
Phyllis Wattis Theater
Le joli mai, Chris Marker and Pierre Lhomme, 1963, 123 min., 16mm
Curated, presented and introduced by Irina Leimbacher
Image: Chris Marker, La Joli Mai (still), 1963; courtesy The Museum of Modern Art Department of Film. Print courtesy of David Shepard.