River

The River

5.0 1
Director: Jean Renoir

Cast: Jean Renoir, Nora Swinburne, Esmond Knight, Arthur Shields

     
 

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The River must be seen in its original Technicolor; it is difficult, if not impossible, to imagine anyone fully enjoying this wonderful film while watching a black-and-white TV print. Adapted by director Jean Renoir and Rumer Godden from Godden's own novel, the film is set on the banks of West Bengal. The central character is teenaged British girl Harriet

Overview

The River must be seen in its original Technicolor; it is difficult, if not impossible, to imagine anyone fully enjoying this wonderful film while watching a black-and-white TV print. Adapted by director Jean Renoir and Rumer Godden from Godden's own novel, the film is set on the banks of West Bengal. The central character is teenaged British girl Harriet (Patricia Walters), the offspring of a jute-mill owner (Esmond Knight) and his wife (Nora Swinburne). Harriet and her best friend Valerie (Adrienne Corri) harbor a crush for a dashing visitor named Captain John (Thomas E. Breen), who in turn is preoccupied with the hauntingly beautiful Indian girl Melanie (Radha Shri Ram). This languid state of affairs is shaken up by unexpected tragedy involving Harriet's impulsive brother (Richard Foster). The real star of the proceedings is the titular river, exquisitely color-photographed by Claude Renoir (Jean's nephew) and his Indian assistant Ramanda Sen Gupta. The apotheosis of Jean Renoir's lifelong fascination with India, The River served as a launching pad for the directorial career of Satyajit Ray, who met and befriended Renoir during the shooting of this film.

Editorial Reviews

All Movie Guide
Unlike other movies that use exotic locales to enhance their subjects, Jean Renoir's The River, shot on location in Bengal, India, doesn't feel like a distant, detached travelogue. Renoir's vision of India is wonderfully poetic and delicately observational, very much in the same rhythm as its surroundings. Renoir was one of the most graceful directors of his era, and the subtlety and depth of his vision is in full flourish in The River. The Eden-like setting complements a tale which captures both the tranquility and the pain of adolescence. This was the director's first color film, impressively photographed by his nephew, Claude Renoir. Although hampered occasionally by inexperienced performances, The River marked Renoir's return to the more humanistic films of his youth.

Product Details

Release Date:
04/21/2015
UPC:
0715515144117
Original Release:
1951
Rating:
NR
Source:
Criterion
Region Code:
A
Presentation:
[Full Frame]
Time:
1:39:00
Sales rank:
5,863

Special Features

Introduction to the film from 1962 by director Jean Renoir; Around the River, a 2008 documentary by Arnaud Mandagaran about the making of the film; Interview with filmmaker Martin Scorsese from 2004; Audio interview with producer Kenneth McEldowney from 2000; Jean Renoir: A Passage Through India, a new video essay by film writer Paul Ryan; Trailer

Cast & Crew

Performance Credits
Nora Swinburne The Mother
Esmond Knight The Father
Arthur Shields Mr. John
Thomas E. Breen Capt. John
Suprova Mukerjee Nan
Patricia Walters Harriet
Adrienne Corri Valerie
Radha Melanie
Richard Foster Bogey
Penelope Wilkinson Elizabeth
Jane Harris Muffie
Jennifer Harris Mouse
Cecelia Wood Victoria
Ram Singh Sajjan Singh
Nimai Barik Kanu
Triak Jetley Anil
June Hillman Narrator

Technical Credits
Jean Renoir Director,Screenwriter
Bansi Chandragupta Set Decoration/Design
George Gale Editor
Rumer Godden Screenwriter
Ramananda Sen Gupta Cinematographer
Eugène Lourié Production Designer
Kenneth McEldownery Producer
Satyajit Ray Asst. Director
Claude Renoir Cinematographer

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The River 5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 1 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago