René Clément was one of the leading French directors of the post-World War II era. He directed what are regarded as some of the greatest films of the time, such as The Battle of the Rails (1946), Forbidden Games (1952) and The Day and the Hour (1963). He was later almost forgotten as a director. He was back in public attention briefly when his epic Is Paris Burning? (1966) (with an all-star cast of famous actors) was released in 1966, but it was much criticized. During the 1960s and 1970s Clement directed a number of unnoticed international productions, always with his usual brio and technical virtuosity. Indeed, what characterizes most of his films is how, even to serve sometimes very unexceptional scripts, the directing is always breathtakingly original, inventive, featuring technical virtuosity and the use of special effects. When a remarkable script is associated with these qualities, a film such as Forbidden Games (1952) is the result: the masterpiece of a lifetime. I think we ca

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