|Fig. 1: Film Poster|
Le Jetee by Chris Marker is a 1962 film comprised of a montage of photos with a formal and very informative narration overlaying them , accompanied by a sound track that illuminates the images with a form of life. The narrator tells the story of memory and time travel by reiterating past events that have been pieced together from real accounts of the events. TV's Movie guide mentions the film in their article is this way, ''Described as a "photo-roman" about "a man marked by an image from his childhood," it manages to tell a gripping, haunting story and create an ominous and powerful atmosphere simply through the masterly manipulation of frozen images and a subtle soundtrack made up of heartbeats, whispers, jet engines and other sound effects, as well as Trevor Duncan's eerie music score. '' (TV Guide, Unknown). There is something about this short film that really grips the heart and makes you feel like you are seeing these memories as though they are our own.
The film tells the story of a prisoner in a post apocalyptic scenario, who is subject to experiments that send him back in time, within his own memory, to a time when he meet a woman at the end of the pier who he wanted to stay with. The narration and heart beat combination really give the film an eerie edge. Making it seem inhuman, an impossible ft, such a task is impractical. Time travel is not even in existence yet. So this has got to be hoax. A tale from a deranged prisoner who was still tortured, but a point that his accounts illustrated cannot be true and have been tampered with. But initially the story is very strong, especially the scene where the two people (the hero and the woman of his memories) go to a museum full of taxidermy animals, see figure 2. Tory Bullock explains , ''These animals are stuck in a moment of time and can never change. It is also a metaphor for the extinction of humanity, where all that is left of is the bodies and the traces of what we once were.''(Bullock, 2011).
|Fig 2: In the Musuem.|
It may only be a thirty minute film, but as Andy Taylor comments, 'While on the surface La Jetée is a straightforward science fiction time travel story, there are so many more underlying themes.'' (Taylor, 2003). So in conclusion, Le Jetee is a weird, but charming film about a man who just wants to be with a woman then spend time in the apocalyptic era.
TV Guide, Unknown. http://www.tvguide.com/movies/la-jetee-132177/review/
T. Bullock. 2011. http://www.timetravelreviews.com/movies/la_jetee.html
A. Taylor, 2003 http://filmandhistory.blogspot.co.uk/2011/05/la-jetee-film-analysis.html
Figure 1: Film poster, 1962. http://filmslie.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/04/Image-089.jpg
Figure 2: In the museum. http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/f/f7/La_Jetee_Poster.jpg