Catherine Breillat, provocative French auteur, presents Elia Kazan’s controversial classic, Baby Doll, at The IFC Center in NYC on March 7th, 7pm.
The ground-breaking writer-director, Breillat, is responsible for acclaimed films Fat Girl, The Last Mistress, and Bluebeard, among others. Breillat appears in person as part of The IFC Center’s guest curator “Movie Night” presentations. The screening is part of this year’s “Rendez-Vous with French Cinema” series, which also features Breillat’s latest film, The Sleeping Beauty.
A personal favorite of Breillat’s, and an influence on her own work, Baby Doll (1956), stars Carrol Baker, Karl Malden and Eli Wallach in a tale of a child bride who becomes the stakes in a game of revenge. “The first time I went to the movies to see Baby Doll,” Breillat remembers, “I went in at noon and I sat through until the end of the last show, well past midnight. The next day, I started writing 36 Fillette [a novel she later adapted into a movie.] My love affair with this movie has never ended, and that’s the story I want to tell you.”
Times Magazine (1956) calls Baby Doll, “Possibly the dirtiest American-made picture that has been legally exhibited.”
Baby Doll was publicized with one of the largest billboards in Times Square’s history, featuring Carrol Baker, in a crib sucking her thumb. The film was instantly condemned by The Legion of Decency and New York’s Catholic Archbishop, Francis Cardinal Spellman, made his first appearance in seven years to say that seeing Baby Doll was a sin in itself.
Info and photo from The IFC Center
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