The Mystery of Picasso

(Le mystère Picasso)

New Digital Restoration

Film to Table dinner follows the March 9 screening

One of the most exciting and joyful movies ever made.

Pauline Kael

After the March 9 screening, enjoy a Film to Table dinner at Babette, the cafe at BAMPFA. Join an intimate group of fellow filmgoers for a four-course, prix-fixe meal in a convivial, dinner-party atmosphere. Purchase dinner tickets in advance at (film tickets must be purchased separately).

In a style devised for this film about his artist pal, Henri-Georges Clouzot sets up a camera behind a translucent surface, so that the maestro’s every painterly gesture is recorded. Paintings emerge from the seemingly effortless frenzy of flourishes, some successful, some merely a mimicry of Picasso performing himself—“superficial,” he cries out at one point, then revises his failed work, backtracking, shifting the weight, collaging, adding color, imposing new ideas in a continual, fluid process. Now and then the director approves, to which Picasso responds, “At least it’s a painting.” Winner of the Palme d’Or at Cannes, this colorful glimpse of the seventy-five-year-old Picasso captures the fecund nature of his creative process, a spontaneous revelation of form in continual transformation.

Steve Seid
  • Henri-Georges Clouzot
  • Claude Renoir
  • French
  • with English subtitles
Print Info
  • B&W/Color
  • DCP
  • 78 mins
  • Milestone Films