René Clément

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René Clément
BirthplaceBordeaux, Gironde, Aquitaine, France

Clément, René


Born Mar. 18, 1913, in Bordeaux. French motion-picture director.

Clément studied in the architectural division of the Ecole des Beaux-Arts in Paris. He began his motion-picture career as a cameraman, working on advertising and travel films. In the late 1930’s he worked for the Army Film Service. During World War II, Clément was in the Resistance Movement.

The first major work that Clément directed, Battle on Rails (1946), made him famous. In a severe documentary manner, the film depicts the struggle of French railroad workers against the German occupiers. World War II has an important place in Clément’s work and is central to such films as The Damned (1947), Forbidden Games (1952), The Day and the Hour (1963), and Is Paris Burning? (1966). Motifs of the poetic realism characteristic of prewar French films appeared in On the Other Side of the Fence (1949; shown in the Soviet Union as The Walls of Malapaga). Clément created one of the best screen adaptations of a work by E. Zola, Gervaise (1956, based on the novel L’Assommoir).

Clément was a founder of the Youth Center, a group of beginning cinematographers; in 1943 it became the Institute of Higher Education in Cinema. Clément has received numerous prizes at international film festivals.


Leprohon, P. Sovremennye frantsuzskie kinorezhissery. Moscow, 1960. (Translated from French.)
Farwagi, A. René Clément. Paris, 1967.


References in classic literature ?
Meanwhile, upon questioning him in his broken fashion, Queequeg gave me to understand that, in his land, owing to the absence of settees and sofas of all sorts, the king, chiefs, and great people generally, were in the custom of fattening some of the lower orders for ottomans; and to furnish a house comfortably in that respect, you had only to buy up eight or ten lazy fellows, and lay them round in the piers and alcoves.
In it, in bewildering confusion, were old sleighs, pungs, horse rakes, hogsheads, settees without backs, bed- steads without heads, in all stages of disability, and never the same on two consecutive days.
In the room where the dressing-table stood, and where the wax candles burnt on the wall, I found Miss Havisham and Estella; Miss Havisham seated on a settee near the fire, and Estella on a cushion at her feet.
Smilash, bareheaded, without a coat, his corduroy vest and trousers heavy with rain; a rough-looking, middle-aged man, poorly dressed like a shepherd, wet as Smilash, with the expression, piteous, patient, and desperate, of one hard driven by ill-fortune, and at the end of his resources; two little children, a boy and a girl, almost naked, cowering under an old sack that had served them as an umbrella; and, lying on the settee where the two men had laid it, a heap of wretched wearing apparel, sacking, and rotten matting, with Smilash's coat and sou'wester, the whole covering a bundle which presently proved to be an exhausted woman with a tiny infant at her breast.
This state between reviving hope and momentary despondency had prevailed for several weeks, when the affectionate girl entered an apartment that communicated with George's own room, where she found the invalid reclining on a settee apparently deeply communing with himself.
Two or three Bull-dogs whom I guessed to be the Body-Guard of the King--were waiting in grim silence: in fact the only voices at all plainly audible were those of two little dogs, who had mounted a settee, and were holding a lively discussion that looked very like a quarrel.
An enormous settee, or sofa, covered with light chintz, stretched along the walls for nearly twenty feet on one side of the hail; and chairs of wood, painted a light yellow, with black lines that were drawn by no very steady hand, were ranged opposite, and in the intervals between the other pieces of furniture.
They come from that lady there--the one who is sitting on the settee, the one who has just been escorted to the verandah by a crowd of lacqueys.
She was seated in a leaning posture on a settee, with her back towards the door; the great rich coils of her pale blond hair surmounting her small neck, visible above the back of the settee.
Captain Hodgson opens the underbody colloid, swings the heavy pithing-iron out of its rack which in liners is generally cased as a smoking-room settee, and at two hundred feet releases the catch.
Try the settee," said Holmes, relapsing into his armchair and putting his fingertips together, as was his custom when in judicial moods.
Interesting, though elementary," said he as he returned to his favourite corner of the settee.