Author Spotlight

Ginette Vincendeau

Ginette Vincendeau is a professor of film studies at King’s College London. She has written widely on popular French cinema and is a regular contributor to Sight & Sound.

13 Results

The Baker’s Wife: Bread, Love, and a Trophy Wife
The Baker’s Wife: Bread, Love, and a Trophy Wife

In his first major film to capture the Provençal setting that would come to define his work, Marcel Pagnol brilliantly combined comedy and emotion, theater and cinema.

By Ginette Vincendeau

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La vérité: Women on Trial
La vérité: Women on Trial

Brigitte Bardot delivers her greatest performance in what would be Henri-Georges Clouzot’s final masterpiece, a stinging indictment of a justice system run by a moralistic patriarchy.

By Ginette Vincendeau

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La poison—or, How to Kill Your Wife
La poison—or, How to Kill Your Wife

French cinema titan Sacha Guitry brings a savage misanthropy to this exploration of a toxic marriage and the arbitrariness of the legal system.

By Ginette Vincendeau

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La chienne: He, She, and the Other Guy
La chienne: He, She, and the Other Guy

Although afflicted by on-set drama and offscreen tragedy, Jean Renoir’s La Chienne shows the director’s early mastery of sound cinema and features the trademarks that would come to define his style.


By Ginette Vincendeau

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Sundays and Cybèle: Innocent Love?
Sundays and Cybèle: Innocent Love?

In the hands of director Serge Bourguignon, a potentially sensationalistic story becomes a poetic and complex investigation of love and pain.

By Ginette Vincendeau

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Lola: Demy’s Paradise Found
Lola: Demy’s Paradise Found

Anouk Aimée’s beguiling chanteuse, the title character of Jacques Demy’s romantic debut feature, is the figure from whom the director’s entire cinematic world springs.

By Ginette Vincendeau

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La haine and after: Arts, Politics, and the Banlieue
La haine and after: Arts, Politics, and the Banlieue

To start on a personal note: I wrote a book about La haine that came out in November 2005, just as the Paris suburbs (banlieues) erupted in an unprecedented wave of violence. Every night, as in the Bob Marley song we hear over the credits, there was …

By Ginette Vincendeau

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Black Moon: Louis in Wonderland
Black Moon: Louis in Wonderland

Black Moon may well deserve the title of Louis Malle’s film maudit. The release in September 1975 of what he called his “mythological fairy tale taking place in the near future” disconcerted many, especially as people had expected him to follow…

By Ginette Vincendeau

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Zazie dans le métro: Girl Trouble
Zazie dans le métro: Girl Trouble

Raymond Queneau’s Zazie dans le métro is the funniest book ever written in, and about, the French language. When it came out in 1959, it “made the whole of France laugh,” Jean-Paul Rappeneau, who helped Louis Malle adapt it to the screen, reco…

By Ginette Vincendeau

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Fat Girl: Sisters, Sex, and Sitcom
Fat Girl: Sisters, Sex, and Sitcom

French auteur cinema has increasingly been exploring themes of sex through scenarios whose explicitness verges on the pornographic.

By Ginette Vincendeau

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The Lovers: Succès de scandale

When it came out in November 1958, The Lovers scandalized conservative France, just as it had outraged Catholic Italy at the Venice Film Festival two months earlier. At the same time, the film solidified the reputations of director Louis Malle and st

By Ginette Vincendeau

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La Pointe Courte: How Agnès Varda “Invented” the New Wave
La Pointe Courte: How Agnès Varda “Invented” the New Wave

La Pointe Courte is a stunningly beautiful and accomplished first film. It has also, deservedly, achieved a cult status in film history as, in the words of historian Georges Sadoul, “truly the first film of the nouvelle vague.”

By Ginette Vincendeau

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Eric Rohmer: Blueprints for a Brilliant Oeuvre

The Bakery Girl of Monceau and Suzanne's Career are not Eric Rohmer's first films. By 1963, he had made several shorts and one feature, Le signe du Lion, in 1959. Yet these two short works are an important blueprint for Rohmer's fantastically prolifi

By Ginette Vincendeau

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