On August 13, the Cleveland Museum of Art will screen part one of Raymond Bernard’s monumental 1934 film Les misérables, probably the best big-screen adaptation of Victor Hugo’s novel, and the only one that gave it a running time appropriately expansive—at nearly five hours—for its narrative scope. A triumph of early French sound cinema, Bernard’s film stars the legendary Harry Baur as the heroic ex-convict Jean Valjean, and Charles Vanel as his tireless antagonist, Inspector Javert, and it features remarkable set design and cinematography. The second part will play a week later, on August 20, and the third on August 27. Below, watch a clip from the first half of the film, in which a kindly bishop takes in a desperate Valjean.
Two Stark Visions of the American Underbelly Hit the Big Screen
A new restoration of the groundbreaking vérité documentary Streetwise joins its companion piece, Tiny: the Life of Eric Blackwell, at New York’s Metrograph theater this weekend.