Éric Rohmer: A Biography

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Product Details

Columbia University Press
Publish Date
7.2 X 10.1 X 1.7 inches | 3.05 pounds

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About the Author

Antoine de Baecque is professor of the history of cinema at Paris Nanterre University. He has published biographies of François Truffaut and Jean-Luc Godard and was editor in chief of Cahiers du cinéma.

Noël Herpe is a senior lecturer at the Université de Paris VIII. He has published works on René Clair and Sacha Guitry, as well as a book of interviews with Éric Rohmer about Rohmer's book, Le Celluloïd et le marbre.


Rohmer was sensitive, very well educated, and at home with literature, music, painting and theater; the biography shows a happy life lived in such culture. It shows how this flows easily into his films, how they operate as experiments in feeling and perception. The book makes one hungry to see them all over again.--Dudley Andrew, Yale University
An essential and ceaselessly enjoyable work of scholarship.... The most valuable gift afforded by this biography is the sheer joy of moving through the exacting, meticulous accounts of each stage of Rohmer's life and career, painstakingly researched and written as if the authors were striving for the same arresting attention to detail, subtlety, humor, and philosophical weight of his films.--Dan Sullivan "Film Comment "
[A] superb new biography.--Richard Brody "The New Yorker "
An intimate, anecdote-filled look at a legend.--Allen Pierleoni "The Sacramento Bee "
Deeply researched and thoroughly enjoyable.--James Campbell "The Wall Street Journal "
Comprehensive and definitive.... An utterly enthralling read.--Christopher Schobert "The Film Stage "
An entertaining new biography.--Pascal Blum "Tages-Anzeiger "
Excellent... definitive.... [A] wonderful book.--Gerald Peary "The Arts Fuse "
A rich and thorough study.--Chris Fujiwara "Cineaste "
Antoine de Baecque and Noël Herpe achieve in this scrupulously researched volume the paradoxical feat of delivering the definitive biography of a pseudonymous subject. Eric Rohmer will interest film historians, theorists of film, enthusiasts of French cinema, and film directors both aspiring and established, for whom Rohmer's low-budget modus operandi remains one of the miracles of modern film production. This, the first biography of Rohmer (né Maurice Schérer), is likely also to be the last.--Derek Schilling, Johns Hopkins University
This book is to be treasured for the huge amount of research undertaken--and tetimonial collected--by the authors. . . . It gives us significant insights into the working methods of a great filmmaker, who in his deceptive simplicity has proved largely intimitable.--David Thompson "Sight and Sound "
One of the most distinguished filmmakers of the French new wave.... [de Baecque and Herpe] pull off the high-wire act of appealing to both film scholars and lay readers with a combination of comprehensive research and engaging storytelling. The book will foster a renewed appreciation of a complex artist and the remarkable body of work he left behind.--Publishers Weekly (starred review)
Biography of the year for cineasts.--Booklist (starred review)
Compulsively readable, this volume is a model of scholarship and style that no serious cinephile's library should be without.--Library Journal (starred review)
The definitive overview of the director's life.--MidCenturyCinema
A thorough study of a great director. Highly recommended.--Choice
No doubt [de Baecque and Herpe's] enthralling biography will remain the ultimate text on the life and legacy of Eric Rohmer, just like Rohmer will live on as one of the ultimate figures of cinema.--Film International
De Baecque and Herpe open the door to Rohmer's world by treating the reader as an interlocutor to whom they are excitedly relaying delightful nuggets from the life of "le grand Momo" that time he and an actress ate cookies and listened to Tahitian music in pious silence (p. 343); the other time when the American comedian Chris Rock remade his film Chloe in the Afternoon (p. 257). In other words, reading Éric Rohmer: A Biography feels like having a long conversation--a nourishing and satisfying one.--Laure Astourian, Bentley University "H-France Review "