Le Feu follet
A Time to Live and a Time to Die (GB title)
The Fire Within (US title)
(France, 1963, 108 minutes)
The last day in the life of a recovering alcoholic who decides he has nothing else left to live for and visits his friends and former flames to see if they can talk him out of it. Poignant melodrama of despair whose very existentialist bleakness is paradoxically life-affirming, carried by a superbly controlled lead performance and stylish but subdued handling.
A Pyramide Distribution release. Lux Compagnie Cinématographique de France presents a Nouvelles Éditions de Films production. Starring Maurice Ronet, Léna Skerla, Yvonne Clech, Hubert Deschamps, Jean-Paul Moulinot, Mona Dol, Pierre Moncorbier, René Dupuis, Bernard Tiphaine, Bernard Noël, Ursula Kubler, Jeanne Moreau, Alain Mottet, François Gragnon, Romain Bouteille, Jacques Sereys, Alexandra Stewart, Claude Deschamps, Tony Taffin, Henri Serre. Directed by Louis Malle; screenplay by Louis Malle, based on the novella by Pierre Drieu de la Rochelle, Le Feu follet; music by Erik Satie; director of photography (b&w), Ghislain Cloquet; production designer, Bernard Evein; film editor, Suzanne Baron.