Laemmle Theatres and Rialto Pictures present Marcel Carné’s Port of Shadows (1938) in a new DCP restoration featuring an all-new translation and subtitles by Lenny Borger.
When Jean (Jean Gabin), a deserter from the Colonial Army, arrives in Le Havre searching for a place to lie low, he doesn’t expect to wind up in the middle of a percolating dispute to between local “tough” guy Lucien (Pierre Brasseur) and distinctively-bearded shop owner Zabel (Michel Simon). Nor does he expect to fall in love with Nelly (Michèle Morgan), a mysterious teenager with too many admirers.
Lauded as one of Marcel Carné and screenwriter Jacques Prévert’s finest films, Port of Shadows explores the fog-shrouded zone between past and future, life and death, and the (im)possibility of escape and established the genre of poetic realism.
“Everything in Jacques Prévert’s script is essential—seemingly throwaway lines loop back to revelations, and shoulder shrugs sum up characters—without sacrificing an overarching, undefinable sense of operatic futility. For these outcasts, life is as heavy and elusive as the fog that never abates in this port town…” – Eric Hynes, Time Out New York
“The film that impressed me the most was Port of Shadows. I can still remember coming out of the theater in a daze, overcome by the beauty of Michèle Morgan’s eyes, her sad smile, and her trenchcoat, as well as by the poetic misty quality of the setting of the film and its tragic ending.” – Richard Roud, Rediscovering French Film
“In 1938, no film looked more revolutionary than Port of Shadows. With its opening scene of bedraggled Jean Gabin struggling down a foggy road, the very temperament of French cinema changed.” – Dudley Andrew
Port of Shadows | Laemmle Royal Theatre & Pasadena Playhouse 7 | opens Feb 1