INTRODUCTION: THE DEVIL, PROBABLY

Harmony Korine / Nashville Film Festival Guide / April 14 - 21, 2005

On April 16, 2005, Harmony Korine appeared at the 2005 Nashville Film Festival to introduced Robert Bresson's The Devil, Probably (1977). The following article, written by Korine, also featured in the Film Festival's program guide that year.

The Devil, Probably is the penultimate film from Robert Bresson. I have only watched this film once myself but the impression it made on me at the time was quite significant. It is about a young man named Charles (played by the grandson of Jean Renoir) who drifts through the world like a wayward ghost. His rejection of the world leads him down a path of dark corners and suicide solutions. The actors here slink around like sick spiders on a morphine drip. They think a lot, say little, and emote next to nothing. In the beginning we watch a baby seal clubbed to death and this sets the tone for the film. Bresson was in an interesting later phase of life where photographing people's shoes seemed to be an appropriate mode of conveying the politics of the day. This film was banned from public viewing for 17 years in France.