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(aka 'Life and Nothing But')

directed by Bertrand Tavernier
France 1989

Life and Nothing But is a French film by director Bertrand Tavernier that is cinematically exquisite and philosophically engaging. In the French countryside during 1920, a major (Philippe Noiret) heads an operation set up to find and identify an estimated 350,000 soldiers reported missing in action. The gruff and war weary officer is moved by two women among the thousands seeking their lost husbands, sons, and boyfriends. Life and Nothing But exposes the wall of fear that exists between men who function best in war and women who are experts in love. This remarkable film about post World War I France succeeds both as an historical drama of a nation in mourning and as an intimate depiction of individuals who are revived by their encounter with each other.

Excerpt from Frederic and Mary Ann Brussat's review at Spirituality and Health website located HERE


Theatrical Release: September 13th, 1989 - Toronto Film Festival

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by Francois Truffaut, Leonard Mayhew

French Cinema: A Student's Guide
by Philip Powrie, Keith Reader
Agnes Varda by Alison Smith Godard on Godard : Critical Writings by Jean-Luc Godard Notes on the Cinematographer by Robert Bresson The Art of Cinema by Jean Cocteau French New Wave
by Jean Douchet, Robert Bonnono, Cedric Anger, Robert Bononno
French Cinema: From Its Beginnings to the Present
by Remi Fournier Lanzoni
Truffaut: A Biography by Antoine do Baecque and Serge Toubiana

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DVD Review: Kino Video - Region 1- NTSC

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Distribution Kino Video - Region 1- NTSC
Runtime 2:10:32 
Video 2.32:1 Aspect Ratio
Average Bitrate: 5.88 mb/s
NTSC 720x480 29.97 f/s

NOTE: The Vertical axis represents the bits transferred per second. The Horizontal is the time in minutes.


Audio French (Dolby Digital 2.0 Dolby) 
Subtitles English, None

Release Information:
Studio: Kino Video

Aspect Ratio:
Aspect Ratio 2.32:1

Edition Details:

• An interview with Bertrand Tavernier and Philippe Noiret (34:32)
• Stills Gallery
• Filmography 

DVD Release Date: October 5th, 2004

Keep Case
Chapters: 18



This is superior to "Let Joy Reign Supreme" , another Tavernier offering that Kino released at the same time. I haven't fully decided if it was taken from a PAL source or simply was not progressively converted (each frame individually). I suspect the latter and possibly the former flaw as well, but all in all the colors are good the image is moderately sharp. The audio is sufficient for the film. The optional English subtitles are well done. A great extra of a half-hour Tavernier - Noiret interview is a wonderful addition. This is a very good film and a decent DVD.  out of   

Gary W. Tooze

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Distribution Kino Video - Region 1- NTSC


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Gary Tooze