Film Review: Journal de France

Journal de France DVD cover

Film review by David Tatnall

Journal de France (2012)
Released on DVD 2013
AUD $30.00
100 minutes
French with English sub-titles.

‘Travelling alone, internationally acclaimed photographer and film-maker Raymond Depardon spent six years capturing his home country France with an 8 x 10 large format camera. This long, solitary road trip provided fertile ground for the creation – with his long-time partner and collaborator Claudine Nougaret – of an extraordinary travel journal’.

This one hundred minute documentary on French photographer and film-marker Raymond Depardon is a wonderful insight into his life and work. The film is basically archival footage of his news reportage and film projects woven together with fascinating footage of his recent six year solo journey around France in a campervan making photographs on an 8 x 10 camera.

Journal de France

The voice over is by his long-time partner, collaborator and sound engineer Claudine Nougaret.

I found the archival footage of his news reportage – all done on ciné film wonderful, especially the sequence of unedited footage of Paris in the 1960’s.

Although we only see one of his very large colour photographs from his 8 x 10 work we do see him at work making the photographs. I enjoyed watching his relaxed style in using the large format camera.

Raymond Depardon with 8x10 camera

This is a good DVD to get out from your local Video Library to watch on a day the light is no good to make photographs.

David Tatnall
December 2013.