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8.3
/10
1,737 Ratings

L'argent

Directed by Robert Bresson
France, Switzerland, 1983
Crime, Drama

Synopsis

A forged 500-franc note is cynically passed from person to person and shop to shop, until it falls into the hands of a genuine innocent who doesn’t see it for what it is – which will have devastating consequences on his life, causing him to turn to crime and murder.

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L'argent Directed by Robert Bresson
The ominous “agent” at work here is money: the workings of an entire capitalist system boiled down to the movement of a forged note and the unstoppable catastrophe that it triggers. As money travels, it dehumanizes everyone it touches, no matter their class or religious or ideological beliefs. What, in other hands, could be played as the premise for a screwball comedy (the phony dollar bill that caused such riotous havoc in a small-town community!) is treated by Bresson as the darkest tragedy.
July 11, 2017
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Finality itself is ultimately L’Argent’s subject, the resting place of a lifelong search for truth in moving images. This is as true and purposeful as cinematography can be. This is Bresson’s goodbye fifteen years before his death. He’d said all he needed to. He’d brought film to a place from which it could thankfully never return.
October 12, 2016
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Bresson captures the moral weight of tiny gestures in brisk, precise images, and conveys the cosmic evil of daily life through one of the all-time great soundtracks, full of the rustle of bills and the clink of change, the click of a cash register and the snap of locks. These noises make the exchange of labor and goods for money play like original sin itself.
October 07, 2016
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