Recommended Star

The River (Renoir) DVD

aka Le Fleuve, Jean Renoir, 1951

£19.99

RRP: £19.99

Add to Basket

Availability
This item is in stock and will be dispatched within 48 hours. Delivery timesUsually 1-2 days to reach UK addresses. Europe takes around 2 days longer and International destinations take 1-2 weeks

Delivery
FREE to UK addresses.
Costs to other countriesUK: Free
Western Europe: £2.50
Rest of the world: £3.75

Returns Policy
If you are unhappy with your purchase, you can return it to us within 14 days. More details

Your Rating

Overall

1 Review // 0 Lists

Film Details

Directed by Jean Renoir

Produced in 1951

Main Language - ENGLISH/BENGALI

Countries & Regions - European Film, Asian Film, Indian Film, American film

MovieMail's Review

It's easy to draw superficial comparisons between The River and Black Narcissus. Both are based on Rumer Godden novels about the sexual awakening of gauche young Englishwomen in a southern Asian setting and shot in ravishing Technicolor. But while Powell & Pressburger staged their melodramatic extravaganza entirely in the studio, Jean Renoir shot The River on location, and was so taken with India that his film became as much an ethnographic study as a piece of storytelling.

Typically, he insisted that people perform their own songs and dances in their own language, and the film's gorgous colour scheme (it was Renoir's first film in colour) arose naturally out of the settings - the Diwali celebrations, with their endless twinkling points of light, are particularly evocative. So too is the overarching themes of birth, death and renewal, symbolised by the great river Ganges of the title and dramatised by the travails of an English family (headed by Nora Swinburne and Esmond Knight, with a young Adrienne Corri as their oldest daughter) as they deal with various life-changing events including the arrival of a handsome but wounded American pilot and a devastating bereavement.

Renoir treats the resulting jealousies and emotional outpourings with the impeccably even-handed approach that characterises all his finest work. His treatment of the budding desires of aspiring poet Harriet (Patricia Walters) is particularly sensitive, no doubt helped by Godden's direct involvement as co-screenwriter and on-set adviser.

The DVD includes a video analysis by filmmaker Kumar Shahani and seven fascinating archive films shot in India between 1899 and 1945, two of them in Technicolor by the great Jack Cardiff.

Michael Brooke on 15th August 2006
Author of 154 reviews

The River (Renoir) The River (Renoir)

Film Description

A lovingly restored print of Renoir's rite-of-passage tale of three sisters living in Bengal, India, whose lives are thrown into disorder following the arrival of an American pilot.

DVD Details

Certificate: U

Publisher: BFI

Length: 99 mins

Aspect ratio: 1.33 Full Screen

Format: DVD Colour

Region: 2

Released: 7th August 2006

Cat No: BFIVD619

DVD Extras

  • 2 discs. Specially commissioned filmed introduction to The River by Indian filmmaker Kumar Shahani
  • Seven rarely-seen short films set in India (1899-1945), preserved in the bfi National Film and Television Archive. Among them are two silent films showing the changes in jute production and two 1930s films photographed in Technicolor by British cinematographer Jack Cardiff
  • Fully illustrated booklet including a film essay and Rumer Godden interview by David Thompson, a director's biography and notes on the seven short films.

Film Stills

The River (Renoir) The River (Renoir)

View Gallery

Community Reviews

Lists

Create your own list

People who liked The River (Renoir)

See Also...

David Lean, 1984

£7.49

A Passage to India

David Lean made a comeback after a 12-year absence with this Oscar-winning adaptation of E.M. For...

DVD

Michael Powell, Emeric Pressburger, 1947

£9.99

Recommended Star

Black Narcissus

Powell and Pressburger added to their run of daring and stylistic pictures with Black Narcissus, ...

DVD

Christopher Morahan, O Brien Jim , 1984

£17.99

The Jewel in the Crown: The Complete Series

This sumptuously 1984 production of Jewel in the Crown brought Paul Scott’s Raj Q...

DVD

Customers who liked this also liked...

Also from director Jean Renoir

View all Jean Renoir films

More from publisher BFI

BFI

Also Available from the Cast

Esmond Knight

Adrienne Corri

Nora Swinburne