Chris Marker Notes from the Era of Imperfect Memory

Les Statues meurent aussi: Filmnotes @ PFA


Marker & Alain Resnais Direct: Statues Also Die (Les Statues Meurent Aussi)

African mask from film Les Statues meurent aussi by Alain Resnais and Chris Marker

“This is a profoundly humanistic study of African art and its decline under colonialism, introducing two themes that have remained central in Marker’s work-the belief that all great human societies represent a victory over adversity and posit a view of man as potential ‘master of the world’; and the belief that such mastery is only possible if man is at one with the natural world. Marker believes that art should seek to ‘guarantee’ this harmony, as early African art does, rather than reflect its loss. This deeply felt film was banned by the censors as an attack on French colonialism, finally appearing ten years later in a truncated version.”
John Wakeman, World Film Directors

A film by Chris Marker, Alain Resnais. (1953, 21 mins, In French with written English synopsis, B&W, 16mm, Print from Cinémathèque Quebeçoise)


  • Have you seen this available anywhere w/English subtitles? Saw it once or twice at PFA many years ago. Surprised this one hasn’t made the somewhat suspect leap to eBay, eMule, or even something more legitimate like a short on an actual DVD (like Resnais’ own Toute la mémoire du monde showing up on the UK version of Marienbad).

  • I haven’t, unfortunately. I am excited by your mention of Toute la mémoire du monde – one of my abosolute favorites. And when is Si j’avais quatre dromedaires going to come out on DVD. Criterion should put these three together! Thanks for stopping by – my first real visitor/comment!

  • PS to markertext: I’m looking to buy a used copy of Corénnes, but can’t find it anywhere online. If there’s any way you could scan an image of the cover, I’d really appreciate it. I’m going to have to go into my storage locker and find my old photocopy of the book…

  • Finding the Resnais short was a nice surprise after searching for it for a long time. You’re right, 4 camels is the next prize, although I think I have a translation of this that was handed out at PFA when they showed the un-subtitled version once. Will have to look for it and post it up. Yep, Corénnes seems to show up on eBay (which is where I found mine) once or twice every few years, but I’d be happy to scan the cover of mine. We should compare libraries to fill in the gaps…

Chris Marker Notes from the Era of Imperfect Memory

Recent Posts


Pin It on Pinterest

Share This