"Every man has a past. For every generation there are a few years to which it always returns to rediscover its own youth", wrote René Clair some years ago. The remark admirably sums up the spirit of his latest film, Porte des Lilas … and I should like to supplement it with this extract from an interview which took place during the production: "… the carefree atmosphere we once enjoyed no longer exists. I want to re-create it"…. [The] marked, though respectful, reserve of the younger generation suggest both Clair's fidelity to his rose-coloured world, and his deliberate determination in some degree to close his eyes to the passage of time. (pp. 145-46)
In the 'thirties Clair resolved his...
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