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Prison and Cinema at Anthology Film Archives

Image: "Le caporal épinglé" directed by Jean Renoir

Anthology Film Archives presents “Prison Images: Incarceration and the Cinema” a series of films portraying the prison experience. Whether by setting a fictional narrative inside of an actual prison building, by composing a documentary from the intimate accounts of prisoners, or even by identifying subtle traces of the penal system far from the prison’s actual location, the films in this series demonstrate a variety of ways of confronting assumptions about prison life and raising issues about its representation.

Spanning from the 1950s to today, this series brings together a broad selection of films, with each reflecting different aesthetic and critical relationships to the prison institution: from provocative, activist documentaries to inmate-made films, from commercial exploitation cinema to classic escape dramas, and more.

Here are the French productions featured in this series.


The Elusive Corporal
Directed by Jean Renoir
Year: 1962
Runtime: 105 mins
> June 20 – 6:45pm; July 3 – 9:00pm

A Man Escaped
Directed by Robert Bresson
Year: 1956
Runtime: 101 mins
> June 21 – 9:00pm; July 2 – 6:30pm

Directed by Delphine Seyrig
Year: 1974
Runtime: 20 mins
> June 22 – 6:00pm; June 27 – 6:30pm

Le Trou
Directed by Jacques Becker
Year: 1960
Runtime: 131 mins
> June 23 – 3:30pm; June 27 – 9:00pm; June 29 – 6:30pm

Les prisons aussi
Directed by Hélène Châtelain & René Lefort
Year: 1973
Runtime: 92 mins
> June 23 – 8:30pm; June 29 – 4:00pm

Un chant d’amour
Directed by Jean Genet
Year: 1950
Runtime: 26 mins
> July 1 – 9:00pm