Le combat dans l’ile (Zeitgeist), the 1961 feature debut by French director Alain Cavalier, is some kind of movie miracle: a New Wave-inspired crime thriller that still feels fresh nearly 50 years later. Cavalier--who went on to make the memorable 1986 biopic Therese--shows an aptitude for gritty characterization and subtle tension in his story of a right-wing extremist (Jean-Louis Trintigant) and his left-wing pacifist friend (Henri Serre) who end up loving the same woman: the right-winger’s beautiful wife (Romy Schneider). Shot in luminous black and white by Pierre Lhomme, Le combat breathes extraordinarily new life into a love triangle hinging on jealousy and revenge. Although extras are minimal—on-set photos and a new Cavalier short—the latter is a doozy: France 1961 is a self-referential short slyly and affectionately shows how an unknown director felt making a movie by using photos of Schneider and her co-stars. originally posted on timessquare.com
began writing reviews in 1983 for his college newspaper, The Buffalo State Record. Since then, he's written about movies, music, theater, books and videos/DVDs for The New York Times, The Buffalo News, Buffalo Night-Life Magazine, Metro Weekend, Blue Dog Press, Queens Resident, New York Resident, Stagebill, Playbill, Time Out New York, Brooklyn Bridge magazine, Musicworks magazine, The Brooklyn Paper, The West Side Spirit/Our Town, staticmultimedia.com, amazon.com, film-forward.com, filmfestivaltraveler.com and timessquare.com. He's also written the program notes for Brooklyn Philharmonic concerts and penned the liner notes for the 2004 Special Edition CD of "The Big Chill" soundtrack.