Regarded by many as a masterpiece, Bresson’s film tells the story of a young man living in Paris who desires more from life than the glib, superficial truths and material things that are on offer to him. He reaches out to his friends and psychiatrist to provide him with the great answers in life.
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Can one attain grace in civilization entranced with self-loathing scientific progress? While Charles suffers this terror of consciousness, the devil unconsciously manifests in both parasitic materialism as well as somnambulistic fatalism. And so reveals the virus of nihilist youth, sealing the bondage of enslaved, mass delusion for generations less a true spiritual revolution towards the sublime arises from the smog.
Can suicide ever be considered a moral act? Robert Bresson captures the particular existential malaise that gripped the Western world during the 1970's. His youths rage, as only youth can, against industrialization, capitalism, and the failure of organized religion to stem the tide towards ruin or offer a balm of consolation. A film for anyone who feels that despair is the only logical response to the 21st century.
This was a really well made political commentary. That being said it is one of Bresson's weaker films, but mind you this is a statement about one of the very best masters of cinema. Lesser Bresson is still far more superior then the best works of most directors!
My relationship with Bresson's films have been wildly varied and difficult at times, but the moment where the title of the film is explained, this grows into a fascinating take on a moment where a person gives up on the meaningless environment around him and burns every bridge metaphorically and literally to improve himself, even if the ending is shocking for everyone viewing it, myself included.
Who hasn't wanted to sneak into a medieval church some night with a sleeping bag and portable record player, then while lying on the parquet floor to stare up at the dark stained glass, the carved marble columns and the ribbed ceiling while listening to Monteverdi motets on vinyl bouncing off the stone vaults? A movie on anarchy and lost faith in all but romantic endings. Get out "Les Pensees," it's Bresson.
The Devil Probably (1977) is a powerful meditation on the arbitrariness of life. Originally restricted in France to those under 18, the film developed controversy due to it’s subjectification of suicide. Many believed that it may incite suicide in certain individuals, particularly within the youth.
Read More: http://aestheticsofthemind.wordpress.com/2012/04/10/the-devil-probably-le-diable-probablement/
I may need to rewatch it because I couldn't quite put my finger in the minor conflicts between the characters here, but thanks to the assured hand in the direction the message is convincing and makes the film ultimately worth watching.