Biography of Jean-Pierre Melville (1917-1973)

Director of French cinema, whose real name was Jean-Pierre Grumbach, born on October 20, 1917 in Paris and died on August 2, 1973, in the same city.


This extraordinary Director's film black, creator of a subgenre dubbed polar, adopted the artistic last name Melville as a tribute the writer of Moby Dick. The enthusiasm manifested simply watching his films: in the image and likeness of the books of Herman Melville, violence, ritualistic or sacrifice come together closely to configure itself and recognizable universe by fans of the cinema, which have exalted him as one of the leading specialists of the gangster movies.

Just at the age of six years would begin to handle a domestic camera, Christmas gift, which made his first films in the street learning the rudiments of cinematic language. Regular Viewer in the showrooms, his enthusiasm for offenders with tone semi-documentary films dynamic character, in which mixed equal parts gritty world of organized violence and certain intellectual winks. After studying Bachelor, and without many desires to pursue academic studies, multiple trades served until in 1937 it was moved by the army, whose ranks was almost eight years as a result of the outbreak of the second world war. Just finish the race created his own film production company with economic means minimum, and launched a craft system predominated the use of natural scenery, the absence of big stars like actors and the use of a lightweight and manageable film crew.

Vingt quatre heures de vie d' a clown, his debut as a professional short film, won an unexpected commercial success which enabled him to make the leap to the feature film the silence of the sea, whose story was during the season, yet very close at the time of the German occupation. Three unique characters served to narrate effectively enormous tensions between a French family and a German officer stayed at home because of the circumstances of the war. The difficulties to undertake the filming went, to the extent that certain sequences were filmed in cladestinidad, without authorization and with film about to expire acquired on the black market. This theme would be present in his films in the description of the occupied France that made Leon Morin, priest, set in a small town in provinces where, under an appearance of normality, beats a deep violence.

The first films of his career, were not, however, much popular eco. NI Les enfants terrible (the work of Jean Cocteauadaptation) nor Quand your liras cette lettre captivated the public, rejecting the hermetic universe presented by Melville. Ready to solve the problem, and confesses to be a massive filmmaker and move away from this aura of editing that was chasing him, will give a notable turn with the support of three important actors of the time intending to: Alain Delon, Jean Paul Belmondo and Lino Ventura.

Thus starts a series of films where the stylization of the violence will be achieving superlative degrees, in a world where cops and criminals are trapped under the threat of treachery and mired in loneliness. A mythological universe where there is no motivation to kill and which prevail desolation, nostalgia for the past, the rejection of aging or the impossibility of finding true love. The confidant, bodyguard, until the last breath or red circle would thus setting up the creative work of Jean-Pierre Melville, exalted as a myth by a long roster of fans and that only his own death as a result of a heart attack could stop.


As director and screenwriter:

Cortometrajes.1946: Vingt quatre heures de vie d' a clown.

Largometrajes.1947: The silence of the mar.1949: terribles.1952 children: Quand your lire cette lettre.1955: Bob le Flambeur.1958: Deux hommes dans Manhattan.1961: Leon Morin, sacerdote.1962: the confidant; The guardaespaldas.1966: until the last aliento.1967: the silence of a hombre.1969: the army of the sombras.1970: the rojo.1972 circle: black Chronicle.

As actor:1948: Les drames du bois of Boulogne.1949: Orfeo.1957: Un amour de poche.1959: Deux hommes dans Manhattan.1960: at the end of the escapada.1962: Landru.