Popular Front(s) I "What to do with "us"?

Workers, Peasants

Ouvriers, paysans
Operai, Contadini

Jean-Marie Straub

Danièle Huillet

2001FranceItaly123 minColour


A group of men and women of all ages in the aftermath of World War II. They build new relationships amidst the ruins. 

PRINT SOURCE: Belva Films, belvafilm.clavert@bluewin.ch


The text is somewhat like the diary recounting the establishment of a community, its passions, its rifts and the ultimate possibility of existing in harsh winter conditions. Straub and Huillet have offered this very powerful text a new kind of existence. In this opera of greenery, the actors in a way “play out” the reconstruction of the acts (in the legal sense) of this “adventure”, like the proceedings of a trial that attempt to shed light on the whys and wherefores of this story. The story follows the twists and turns of a defence plea without our knowing exactly who is the defence and who is the prosecutor. The dispositive muddies the waters and focuses more on the possibility of living together against all odds, and especially against History. It is thus a staging of the Marxist dialectic of History to which the filmmakers invite us, a class struggle between warring brothers which finally turns into the possibility of rereading History.

– Philippe Gajan (24 images, Mai 2001)

  • PRODUCTION : Danièle Huillet et Jean-Marie Straub
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