Three thumbnails from Cahiers "New Wave" special -- Malle. Lelouch, Bernard-Aubert
These are the thumbnail critiques from the December 1962 special "New Wave" issue of Cahiers du Cinema for Claude Bernard-Aubert (whose Patrouille de choc (1957) and Les Tripes au soleil (1959) were precursors of the New Wave), Louis Malle and Claude Lelouch.
Cinema also has its Jacques Brel and one is tempted to include the director of Les Lâches vivent diespoir in the small group of "grandiloquents"; "grandiloquents" only film performers full-bore and have them strive about in paroxysms; they deliver grand messages and hide somehow or other a secret penchant for incoherence. The fact is that the two poorest films of our auteur are those that do not take as their theme, war, racism and their absurdity.
Let's not be too severe on our shock-patroller who has just with Poliorkia (Les Moutons de Praxo) succeeded in making his best film, a new parable on the absurdity of war, shot in Greece with, this time, a "terrible sweetness" which we know from Resnais to be more effective than a violent indictment.
Louis Malle (page 75)
(described as "preparing" Assez Champagne)
He likes achievement: the underwater photography, the work with Bresson, the unwavering lovers, the cinema of effervescence. the truth about Bardot, the Tour de France and the war in Algeria. Serious research fascinates him; but he is still in quest of "a subject", worried, honest worker, he is looking for "his" vision of the world. But everything takes place as if the world is obstinate about refusing this to him. All the while, speaking loudly of film and its objectives. If his films resembled what he says about them, he would be the phoenix of the New Wave.
Claude Lelouch (page 74)
Le Vie en château (interrupted)
Screenwriter, dialogue writer, director, cameraman, in brief the total auteur; this is the most recent example of the gawky disciple, Taking Godard for an improviser and Rouch for a long-distance runner, he wanders that streets at any good or bad (lucky or unlucky) hour filming anything anyway. "If you don't like this, don't disgust the others with it", seems to be the thinking of American television which has proposed to him to show America in the way he has shown Paris. A fat lot of good that will do.