• Early in his fifty-plus-year career, German-born director Marcel Ophuls traveled a remarkable path from making commercial films with stars like Jean-Paul Belmondo and Jeanne Moreau to becoming one of cinema’s foremost chroniclers of occupied Europe and the Holocaust. In The Sorrow and the Pity, The Memory of Justice, and the Oscar-winning Hôtel Terminus: The Life and Times of Klaus Barbie, he brought an investigative rigor and intellectual complexity to the documentary form, shining a light on wartime atrocities and confronting uncomfortable questions about collective guilt. Earlier this year, Ophuls sat down with Los Angeles Times critic Kenneth Turan for an event at UCLA and opened up about everything from his groundbreaking filmography to his experiences as the son of the great auteur Max Ophuls. In the clip above, the director talks about the tension between his shyness and the more audacious side of his personality, which comes to life when he conducts the revealing interviews at the heart of his films. Watch the entire episode now on the Criterion Channel on FilmStruck, where you’ll also find The Sorrow and the Pity and Hôtel Terminus, as well as our previous Masterclass episodes featuring Kirsten Johnson and Michael Moore, and Alex Ross Perry and Robert Greene.

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