Irrestisible charm and talent helps Serge Alexandre alias Stavisky, small-time swindler, to make friends with even most influential members of French industrial and political elite during the early 30s.
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To me, what distinguishes Resnais is that no other director has ever so skillfully dedicated himself to cinematographically realizing the work of other writers. Each film (especially in the first half of his career) finds entirely unique ways to visualize and give form to screenplays which he himself did not write. Stavisky is especially unique for its grand romantic vision of larger-than-life folly. Pure cinema.
What Semprún lacks rather severely in his scriptwriting is condoned in part by Resnais tactful, elegantly precise filmmaking, as well as the outstanding efforts in Vierny's cinematography and Belmondo's performance. Now if only it were a more pleasing watch...