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'The River' Movie: Jean Renoir Classic

The River (1951) directed by Jean Renoir, starring Nora Swinburne, Esmond Knight, Arthur Shields

The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences will be presenting a restored print of Jean Renoir's 1951 drama The River. Though largely forgotten today, The River remains one of Renoir's best films. The performances may leave much to be desired and the plot may seem a tad too slight, yet, The River exudes an atmosphere of spirituality such as has rarely been captured on film. Highly recommended.

Press Release:

Beverly Hills, CA – A recently restored print of Jean Renoir's The River (1951) will be screened by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences on Wednesday, April 19,'06, at 8 p.m., in the Academy's Samuel Goldwyn Theater. The film is presented as part of the Academy's Gold Standard series.

Shot on location in India,The River was Renoir's first film in color and is considered the ultimate articulation of the director's career-long fascination with the theme of water as a life force and source of beauty. Photographed by the director's nephew, Claude [Renoir], the film's screenplay was written by Renoir and Rumer Godden, who wrote the novel upon which the film is based.

In The River, Harriet, Valerie and Melanie are teenage friends in India. When the wounded American Captain John arrives, all three vie for his affection. As they do so, the beauty of the country and the day-to-day life of its people are depicted.

The print to be screened is from the new restoration completed by the Academy Film Archive in association with the British Film Institute, Janus Films and The Film Foundation. The restoration was funded with support from the Hollywood Foreign Press Association. The original three-strip nitrate Technicolor camera negative was used for the restoration, along with soundtrack elements from two safety prints. The restored print was premiered at the Cannes Film Festival last year.

Tickets for the Academy's Gold Standard presentation of The River go on sale April 3 for $5 for the general public and $3 for Academy members. They may be purchased in advance at the Academy during regular business hours, by mail, or on the night of the screening, if still available, when the doors open at 7 p.m. The Academy is located at 8949 Wilshire Boulevard in Beverly Hills. For more information, call 310-247-3600.

The River movie image: © A.M.P.A.S.


         
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