One of the rare André Bazin essays on his own life relates the twists and turns that he experienced when bringing a parrot from Brazil to France. (1) That bird’s linguistic ability was no consideration for the authorities of France, a psittacosis-phobic country in which the parrot became fraudulent and contraband. On the airplane to France with his pet named Coco, the animal lover indeed was anxious about his illegal adventure: “the more we approached, the more the personality of Coco became morally invasive” (2). The customs, however, turned out to be a MacGuffin, passing the bird with no interest, while the transatlantic anxiety suddenly turned into a happy ending: “Coco est français.”
We would not have to read between the lines in this lovely anecdote, unless Bazin’s antennæ detected a number of animals on screen to the extent that his film ontology seems inseparable from his animal ontology. Intriguingly, the title of the Coco story has the verb être, whose subject should be Coco instead of Bazin; not simply of the difficulty of ‘bringing’ Coco, the piece speaks “of the difficulty of being Coco”, Coco’s being French and its socio-ontological shift in being from a savage virus to an authorized item, from a potential terrorist to a family member. The bird’s invasion, if not yielding a Hitchcockian catastrophe, thus draws our attention to the ontological topology between the civilized society and its lawless outside, between the human and its nonhuman other. How does the former ban, defeat, abandon, or legitimate, domesticate, territorialize the letter? More fundamentally, what does the encounter with ontological otherness bring to the human and the cinema? Bazin’s articles touching directly or indirectly on animals, especially in adventure films, allow us to relocate these questions on various levels. Taking three rough steps from fiction through the semi-fictional or semi-documentary to the documentary, what follows traces Bazinian animal films in a way to rethink ontological as well as aesthetical concepts that penetrate the core of his cinematic vision.
Although fictional films do not seem to have been central in Bazin’s interest in the animal, a couple of reviews are noteworthy particularly in reminding us of the Coco story on the level of diegesis. In comparison with Vittorio De Sica’s Miracolo a Milano (Miracle in Milan, 1951), Bazin wrote twice on Buongiorno, elefante! (Hello Elephant, Gianni Franciolini, 1952), another fantasy-mixed neorealist film produced by De Sica and co-written by Cesere Zavattini. (3) In this film about a poor teacher (played by De Sica himself), whom the neighbourhood forces to take away a baby elephant that he received from an Indian prince, Bazin pays attention to a scene that is present on script but absent on screen: a scene in which the elephant runs through the streets in Rome and rejoins the teacher marching on a strike for a higher salary. Bazin assumes that this socially protestant climax was either not shot or just cut by the distributor, even though the result leaves the plot incoherent. The elephant here is first given as a pure gift from outside, but regarded as a stranger to reject by insiders of the community, and then returns as both an invader shaking the social order and a true friend of the minority in it. As the expression “white elephant in your room” connotes, the society decides whether this animal, unwanted but difficult to dispose of, is hospitable or hostile, is to be authorized or ostracized. No doubt the animal is a metonymy of what it befriends, i.e. a deprived class or deserted individual within the society. What Bazin sees through another De Sica film Umberto D (1952) is this social existence of otherness that a man and an animal can share, their being solidary: “I have no hesitation in stating that the cinema has rarely gone such a long way toward making us aware of what it is to be a man. (And also, for that matter, of what it is to be a dog.)” (4)
When semi-fictional or semi-documentary aspects are at issue, this sociological ontology of the animal expands into an æsthetical ontology of the cinema itself. Notably, Bazin mentions Raoul Walsh’s loss of an eye and injury to the limbs during the course of making Western films “with too much of realism” (5), but, before looking further into the actual danger (from animals) lurking in cinematic space, we need to focus on the primary shift in Bazin’s attention from the imaginary alone to the correlation between the imaginary and the real. What matters at least in (semi-)fiction is not the character’s running real risk per se so much as its realist condition of spatial unity, the “homogeneity of space” that should be real and imaginary at once. “Crin Blanc [in Crin blanc: le cheval sauvage (White Mane, Albert Lamorisse, 1953)] is at one and the same time a real horse that grazes on the salty grass of the Camargue and a dream horse swimming eternally at the side of little Folco.” (6) For this chiasma of the real and the imaginary, such a trick as using several horses for one horse character can be allowed. Bazin indeed prefigures the psychoanalytic principle of fetishist disavowal: “If the film is to fulfil itself aesthetically we need to believe in the reality of what is happening while knowing it to be tricked.” (7) The question is, thus, neither the diegetic representation of the animal nor its real existence as such, but the dialectic relationships between diegetic representation and nondiegetic enunciation on the director’s part, and between the belief in the imaginary as real and the knowledge about the symbolic process of creating the very illusion out of reality on the viewer’s part.
Why animals, then? Bazin seems to think that the montage effect peaks when breaking rules of this realist game in order to maximize anthropomorphism of animals. Though “the margin of error is greater on the side of Descartes and his animal-machine than on Buffon and his half-human animals” (8), montage elicits the illusion of animals’ humanized actions and the symbolism of human animals by linking different shots of varying space, time and content. Only the manipulation of screen effects matters there, sacrificing reality as such in which, one may say, the animal still exists as man’s most crucial ontological other. Hence Bazin’s famous prohibition of montage: “When the essence of a scene demands the simultaneous presence of two or more factors in the action, montage is ruled out.” (9) The genuine suspense in Where No Vultures Fly (Harry Watt, 1951) emerges with parents, child and lioness all in the same full shot, just as in Nanook’s hunting seal and Chaplin’s being in the lion’s cage. Serge Daney sees through the paradox of Bazin’s law:
The cinema seeking continuity and transparency at all costs is identical to a cinema that dreams of filming discontinuity and difference as such. And it can only do it by reintroducing them as objects of representation. (10)
To intern ontological difference means to save representation in which things speak of themselves.
And yet this æsthetic credo does not rule out all types of cutting. If montage ‘tricks the film’ by deceiving the spectator, découpage – as the script or editing for constructing spatiotemporal unity – ‘films the trick’ by allowing the spectator to invest belief over knowledge, as aforementioned in the formula of “I know, but all the same (I believe in this illusion as real).” Montage vs découpage is therefore the illusion existing only on the screen vs the illusion sending us back to reality. Hervé Joubert-Laurencin rephrases this opposition as manipulation vs prestidigitation, manufacture vs artisanship. (11) Regarding La Course de taureaux (The Bullfight, Pierre Braunberger and Myriam, 1951), Bazin sees the editor’s artistic fingers with “precision and clarity” fulfilling “both the physical verisimilitude of decoupage and its logical malleability”.
The linkage of two bulls in a single movement does not symbolize the bulls’ strength; it surreptitiously replaces the photo of the nonexistent bull we believe we are seeing. The editor makes sense of her editing just as the director of his decoupage, based solely on this kind of realism. It is no longer the camera eye, but the adaptation of editing technique to the aesthetics of the camera pen. (12)
Likewise, Der stora äventyret (The Great Adventure, Arne Sucksdorf, 1953) achieves “a true aesthetic of animal films” by linking shots that have already been thoroughly prepared according to locations and movements of animals. To map and capture all their presence as such, the director simply put enormous time with patience rather than controlling or directing them. The foxes and otters were “no longer tamed but familiarized” (13). In other words, it is not montage but découpage that respects and preserves their ontological otherness and its presence. Couldn’t we see here Bazin’s ontology of the photographic image evolving into the ontology of the cinematic découpage?
Furthermore, only through this ontological realism could an animal documentary be a semi-fiction that succeeds to bring real emotions out of an animal family or community. Of Bazin’s two articles on the Disney film, A True Life Fantasy: Perri (Paul Kenworthy and Ralph Wright, 1957), a substantial one published in Cahiers du Cinéma delves into this dialectics of documentary and fiction with more complexity. (14) First, this documentary of a real squirrel’s life and adventure accomplishes the shift from montage to decoupage, “from comic animation films based on burlesque synchronism to sentimental realism and its animation” (15). Second, this realism paradoxically bases itself on the logic of simulacrum, because natural Disney recopies animated Disney while searching for what resembles his drawing in the nature. “It is not the cinema that attributes the human behavior to animals, but the animals themselves acting before the camera according to the predetermination that could preside over a dramatic sequence.” (16) Third, this simulation of animation by nature indeed mingles with animation itself in some scenes.
The animated characters are not introduced, included in the photographic background beside the real characters; they become real or return to the drawing, along with a back-and-forth that supposes the reciprocity and ambiguity integral of this universe. (17)
Now what would the animal be if not an amalgam not only of the real and imaginary, the documentary and fiction, but also of actual and animated documentaries, or actual and animated fictions?
The animal, then, not merely remains an ontological other within the filmed diegesis, but becomes an ontological hybrid concerning the filming enunciation. It becomes both a black hole that penetrates different modes of the cinematic image and a quilting point that stitches the very differences. And this potential of ‘becoming’ seems to enable the animal film to conversely reach the ideal of anthropomorphism that goes beyond its clichéd illusion formed by montage. Bazin, for instance, points out not just an objective shot of real danger – a beaver and a squirrel on the tree in the same shot – but also a subjective shot taken from the squirrel’s point of view – we see the beaver climbing up the tree while also noticing the squirrel’s tail in the foreground, which indicates its being there. This “decoupage in depth,” reminiscent of Bazin’s appreciation of the depth of field as in Orson Welles, is nothing other than a ‘free indirect discourse’ shot in the manner postulated by Pier Paolo Pasolini and Gilles Deleuze. The effect is that the human spectator can be inside the animal conscience and become the very ontological other. (18)
At this point, The Bullfight could draw our attention again: its apparently objective shots cause highly subjective reactions because of the repetitive staging of the “metaphysical kernel: death”. Like the sexual act (which is called the little death), death is “the absolute negation of objective time, the qualitative instant in its purest form.” (19) It is clear that both Eros and Thanatos face us with our other; in this film, man experiences death as the ontological shift through the encounter with the ontological other, the animal. Moreover, we also see the animal death, the same ontological state to which the human leads and which ultimately dissolves into the earth or the air. The question is then no longer a sympathetic becoming-other in semi-fictional manners, but the one’s sheer encounter or struggle with an antagonistic other and the environment from which it can appear and to which one and the other both will disappear. Following the camera and taking the position of a subject in the film, we the audience are invited to and immersed in this whole ontological battleground. Spectatorship would then turn from fetishism into participation.
It is no coincidence that a documentary of adventure is basically shot by a director who is the subject within, and as part of, the surroundings – or say, diegesis – he shoots. A couple of semi-documentary films are suggestive of this repositioning of the director as a character. In Robert J. Flaherty’s Louisiana Story (1948), Bazin is fascinated not only with “an alligator catching a heron”, but with “the silence of the marsh invisibly populated”. The former represents two oppositional others in an objective shot, whereas the latter implies the director’s subjective involvement in the spatial whole where he the human and the animal multitude appear as two ontological others. (20) The former engages with the aesthetical ontology of visible decoupage; the latter with a more existential ontology open to invisibility, thus unpredictability. Even though the film depicts a Disney story of a child’s regaining his animal friend, Bazin sees through a “cinema in the glory of nature and men who wrestle with it as Jacob with the Angel” (21). Of course, the Angel is ontologically an invisible other. When Bazin criticizes Feitiço do Amazonas (Naked Amazon, Zygmunt Sulistrowski, 1954) for being “a little dressed” (22), this implies the lack of invisible contingency. An anaconda attacking a Blond woman and a fight against crocodiles which are “visibly troubled in their Sunday rest” are deprived of their horror effect, because the film crew was ready to intervene in those dangerous situations. The animal otherness is only exploited and fabricated visually in this sensationalist semi-romantic documentary.
For Bazin, a desirable case seems found in Le Monde du silence (The Silent World (Jacques-Yves Cousteau and Louis Malle, 1956). This genuine documentary of the deep sea includes (1) an objective two-shot of a shark attacking a whale, for which man could feel sympathy as a mammal; (2) self-reflexive shots of the shooting device and the cameraman as the subject of filmic enunciation, which breaks into the closed diegetic space; and (3) subjective shots of the sea as a whole, the Real as the matrix of life including invisible others:
[…] mysterious and invisible nebulas of plankton reflect the echo of the radar. From this life we are just a grain abandoned with some others on the ocean beach. Man, say biologists, is a marine animal who carries the sea in the interior. Nothing surprising, thus, in that diving also gives him without doubt the latent feeling of the return to the origin. (23)
Given that the animal here takes the molecular form of plankton, it would not be over-the-top to rephrase this “return to the origin” as “becoming-animal” in its Deleuzian sense of “becoming multiple, imperceptible, clandestine”, towards the ontological “plane of immanence”. This becoming-other in (3) goes well beyond identifying with a visible entity or resembling another unified organism as in (1); it rather deterritorializes our subjective unity into the most fundamental ground of intersubjectivity or asubjectivity that has already been waving in our deep inside. But it should be noted that this encounter with, or incorporation into, the Real can be delivered to, and experienced by, the audience only through the persistence of subjectivity even on the verge of its dissolution. So (2) indicates where Bazin’s ultimate question is posed: What is cinema?
Reviewing a few related adventure films, Bazin carries this question to extremes as if pursuing film ontology were his critical adventure. It starts with the sharp criticism of Scott of the Antarctic (Charles Frend, 1948), a studio work “to imitate the inimitable, to reconstruct that which of its very nature can only occur once, namely risk, adventure, death” (24). But its deceptive montage deprives Scott’s unique adventure of its spatiotemporal aura. Knowing that its location is not the Antarctic may then frustrate the viewer’s investment of belief, unlike White Mane and The Bullfight in which knowing the trick does not break our belief in the real. Bazin’s comparison between Groenland (Greenland (Marcel Ichac, 1949) and Kon-Tiki (Thor Heyerdahl, 1950) is crucial here: one is a perfect montage, the other shows “almost nothing” (25); one is “the exhaustive and ideal testimony, the automatic copy of the event”, the other “the partial testimony [that] out of necessity represents its object only very weakly” (26). However, if Greenland looks like a “special supplement” to a well predicted danger, Kon-Tiki is unpredictable: it not only re-enacts Peruvians’ hypothetic migration to Polynesia, but amateur filmmaking itself is an integral adventurous action. Far from taming wild nature as the background for human heroism, the objective witness to danger is inseparable from the subjective participation in the very danger that renders its recording so difficult that “the cinema”, Daney says, “becomes a reality and then annuls itself, becomes itself the impossible.” (27) For Bazin, in this sense “Kon-Tiki is the most beautiful of films, but it doesn’t exist.”
How much more moving is this flotsam, snatched from the tempest, than would have been the faultless and complete report offered by an organized film, for it remains true that this film is not made up only of what we see – its faults are equally witness to its authenticity. The missing documents are the negative imprints of the expedition – its inscription chiselled deep [l’événement intégré à la matière même du film]. (28)
The cinematic vision is a certain “backward step”, since the screen shows only “the remains of an unfinished creation about which one hardly dares to dream”. And yet it is “in the insufficiency of its form” that the cinema preserves “the subjective authenticity, the moral quality of adventure” (29). We then invest our belief not merely in what is present there, but in what is absent there. Bazinian indexicality can thus be re-addressed. The cinematic image is not simply the trace of fullness, but “the imperfect, always already punctured trace of an ambiguous world” (30). It is an index not just to “gain in reality”, but to “loss of reality”, an index to what should have been represented but couldn’t. This index of its own failure, let’s say a “para-index”, therefore indicates the absence of something beside itself, something beyond its visualization. The question is no longer an index-record of the visible, but an index-indication to the invisible. When the cameramen of Victoire sur l’Annapurna (Marcel Ichac, 1953) look like “mummies”, this Bazinian metaphor does not record their fixed presence, but indicates the unrepresentable experience of an avalanche that snatched their camera, the experience of the Real that made their faces traumatically frozen. (31) Nevertheless, it must be noted that only through this failed indexicality could filmmakers still lead us to what is missing. So we should “excuse them for having returned” from the Real, without jumping into death. (32)
Well, then, where is the animal? It appears on this threshold between the seen and the unseen, between positive and negative imprints, between subjectivity and nothingness.
[W]hen an exciting moment arrives, say a whale hurling itself at the raft, the footage is so short that you have to process it ten times over in the optical printer before you can even spot what is happening […] The image is almost illegible […] This marvelous film exists all in all only in the form of a wreck. (33)
Here, ‘blowing up’ this photographic image à la Michelangelo Antonioni would only confirm its “para-indexicality” that indicates the “para-ontological” state of the animal, since the whale is part of the sea. It is apparent without appearing, just as in Didi-Huberman’s “paradox of the phasmid”: the stick insect whose body perfectly resembles twigs or leaves in a way of incorporating rather than imitating its environment. (34) Like invisible plankton in a peaceful sea, Bazin describes, “sharks, giant sea breams, flying fishes, and whales […] were in a cool place in the shadow of the balsa floor. They never shook it […] marine animals never broke this pact of Eden.” (35) And yet, what matters is “less to see the whale well than to hold the camera at the same time as the whale can send the operator to the bottom” (36).
We are on the Kon-Tiki with Thor Heyerdahl when the formidable whale shark drowse in the shadow of the raft that it goes past easily. A stroke of tail and we would go down with the camera to the bottom of 6,000 or 7,000 meters. (37)
This phasmid-like animal thus is a phantasm or apparition whose ontological otherness can turn into a dangerous horror to us, but whose incorporation of us into the environment will efface the boundaries between ontological differences, and, furthermore, between these differences and their undifferentiated origin, matrix.
Now the encounter with a phasmid-animal enables us to rewrite Bazin’s æsthetical ontology with more subtlety and profundity. He would rule out montage not just for representing the phenomenological co-presence of two visible objects, but also for experiencing the ontological co-presence of a filming subject and an invisible object in front of him. Heterogeneity lies no longer in the visible field, but on the boundary between visible reality and the invisible Real. Indeed, that obscure object seems nothing but the Lacanian objet a, which lurks below the Real and suddenly attacks us, thwarting the subject’s mise en scène and drawing him to the mise en abyme of sublime depth/death. Daney reads Bazin precisely through this psychoanalytic lens:
Whoever passes through the screen and meets reality on the other side has gone beyond jouissance […] The screen, the skin, the celluloid, the surface of the pan, exposed to the fire of the real and on which is going to be inscribed – metaphorically and figuratively – everything that could burst them. (38)
He compares this flimsy screen to the apparently Derridean “hymen”, the virginal membrane whose rape or castration accomplishes its other meaning, marriage, the fusion of two others; thus, sexual orgasm as a little death of one’s unity. And “[t]he trip switch is therefore the death of the filmmaker […] You have to go to the point of dying for your images.” (39) The greatest experience of jouissance going beyond any representation would be not the castration of an animal or man in digesis, but that of the man with a movie camera in enunciation. But, again, as “the representation of a real death” of the bull or the bullfighter is the inevitable “obscenity” of the cinematic image (40), we must accept the failed representation of a potential death of the director as the ontological core of the cinema. Not to mention the failure of capturing the invisible animal. In brief, the whole Bazin work on animals could be titled: ‘De la difficulté d’être cinéma.’
A summary of this essay was presented at the transatlantic conference, “Ouvrir Bazin/Opening Bazin”, held at the University of Paris 7 and Yale University in November and December 2008. The Bazin articles mentioned here were from the Yale archive of all Bazin’s published writings – 2,582 in total – that Professor Dudley Andrew founded.
Qu’est-ce que le cinema?, 14th edition (Paris: Le Cerf, 2002).
“Le Monde du silence”, pp. 35-40.
“Montage interdit”, pp. 48-62.
“De Sica metteur en scène”, pp. 311-30.
Cahiers du Cinéma
“Mort tous les après-midi”, Vol. 7 (December 1951), pp. 63-5.
“Les périls de Perri”, Vol. 83 (May 1958), pp. 50-3.
“De la difficulté d’être Coco”, Vol. 91 (January 1959), pp. 52-7.
Le Miroir de Paris
“Un grand film: Louisiana Story”, Vol. 1595 (29 October 1949).
“Louisiana Story aura été la dernière histoire de R. Flaherty”, Vol. 2135 (25 July 1951).
“Kon-Tiki et Groenland: Poésie et aventure”, Vol. 2371 (28 April 1952).
“L’Aventure sans retour: Glace sans Esquimaux”, Vol. 2389 (20 May 1952).
“Bonjour, Eléphant!: On a souvent besoin d’un plus gros que soi”, Vol. 2866 (1 December 1953).
“L’Amazone nue: un peu ‘habillée’”, Vol. 3331 (28 May 1955).
“Les Implacables: De l’amour et des vaches!”, Vol. 3538 (25 January 1956).
“Les Aventures de Perri: Walter Disney romancier et poète de la nature”, Vol. 4234 (22 April 1958).
“Le Kon-Tiki ou grandeur et servitudes du reportage filmé”, Vol. 103 (30 April 1952), pp. 23-4.
“Mort du documentaire reconsitué: L’Aventure sans retour”, Vol. 106 (22 May 1952).
“Annapurna”, Vol. 154 (23 April 1953), p. 23.
“Bonjour, Eléphant!”, Vol. 186 (3 December 1953).
“La Grande aventure”, Vol. 269 (7 July 1955), pp. 29-30.
“Avec Naufragé volontaire et Forêt sacré le reportage filmé devient une aventure spirituelle”, Vol. 275 (24 April 1955).
Serge Daney, “L’écran du fantasme (Bazin et les bêtes)”, La Rampe: Cahier critique 1970-1982 (Paris: Cahier du Cinéma et Gallimard, 1982), pp. 34-42.
Georges Didi-Huberman, “Le Paradoxe du phasme”, Phasmes: essais sur l’apparition (Paris: Minuit, 1998), pp. 15-20.
Hervé Joubert-Laurencin, “Une lettre en souffrance: Post-scriptum à Montage interdit d’André Bazin”, La Lettre volante: quatre essais sur le cinéma d’animation (Paris: Presses de la Sorbonne nouvelle, 1997), pp. 15-34.
— -. “André Bazin et le documentaire ou Excusons-les d’en être revenu”, Conférence au colloque du festival de Gentilly: Les Écrans documentaires (Paris: L’Université de Paris 7-Denis Diderot, 1997), pp. 1-6.
- André Bazin, “De la difficulté d’être Coco”, Cahiers du Cinéma, Vol. 91 (January 1959), pp. 52-7.
- “De la difficulté d’être Coco”, p. 57.
- André Bazin, “Bonjour, Eléphant!”, France Observateur, Vol. 186 (3 December 1953). Also, see “Bonjour, Eléphant!: On a souvent besoin d’un plus gros que soi”, Le Miroir de Paris, Vol. 2866 (1 December 1953).
- André Bazin, “De Sica metteur en scène”, Qu’est-ce que le cinema?, 14th edition (Paris: Le Cerf, 2002), p. 329.
- André Bazin, ‘Les Implacables: De l’amour et des vaches!’, Le Miroir de Paris, Vol. 3538 (25 January 1956).
- André Bazin, “Montage interdit”, Qu’est-ce que le cinema, p. 55.
- Ibid, p. 56.
- Ibid, p. 51.
- Ibid, p. 59.
- Serge Daney, “L’écran du fantasme (Bazin et les bêtes)”, La Rampe: Cahier critique 1970-1982 (Paris: Cahier du Cinéma et Gallimard, 1982), p. 35.
- Hervé Joubert-Laurencin, “Une lettre en souffrance: Post-scriptum à Montage interdit d’André Bazin”, La Lettre volante: quatre essais sur le cinéma d’animation (Paris: Presses de la Sorbonne nouvelle, 1997), pp. 15-34.
- André Bazin, “Mort tous les après-midi”, Cahiers du Cinéma, Vol. 7 (December 1951), pp. 63-4.
- André Bazin, “La Grande aventure”, France Observateur, Vol. 269 (7 July 1955), p. 30.
- André Bazin, “Les Aventures de Perri: Walter Disney romancier et poète de la nature”, Le Miroir de Paris, Vol. 4234 (22 April 1958) and “Les périls de Perri”, Cahiers du Cinéma, Vol. 83 (May 1958), pp. 50-3.
- Ibid, p. 52.
- Ibid, p. 53.
- Ibid, p. 52.
- “Mort tous les après-midi”, pp. 64-5.
- André Bazin, “Un grand film: Louisiana Story”, Le Miroir de Paris, Vol. 1595 (29 October 1949).
- André Bazin, “Louisiana Story aura été la dernière histoire de R. Flaherty”, Le Miroir de Paris, Vol. 2135 (25 July 1951).
- André Bazin, “L’Amazone nue: un peu ‘habillée”, Le Miroir de Paris, Vol. 3331 (28 May 1955).
- André Bazin, “Le Monde du silence”, Qu’est-ce que le cinema?, p. 36.
- André Bazin, “Mort du documentaire reconsitué: L’Aventure sans retour”, France Observateur, Vol. 106 (22 May 1952). Also, see “L’Aventure sans retour: Glace sans Esquimaux”, Le Miroir de Paris, Vol. 2389 (20 May 1952).
- André Bazin, “Kon-Tiki et Groenland: Poésie et aventure”, Le Miroir de Paris, Vol. 2371 (28 April 1952).
- André Bazin, “Le Kon-Tiki ou grandeur et servitudes du reportage filmé”, France Observateur, Vol. 103 (30 April 1952), p. 24.
- “L’écran du fantasme (Bazin et les bêtes)”, p. 39.
- “Annapurna”, p. 23.
- “Le Kon-Tiki ou grandeur et servitudes du reportage filmé”, p. 24.
- Hervé Joubert-Laurencin, “André Bazin et le documentaire ou Excusons-les d’en être revenu”, Conférence au colloque du festival de Gentilly: Les Écrans documentaries (Paris: L’Université de Paris 7-Denis Diderot, 1997), p. 2.
- “Annapurna”, p. 23.
- André Bazin, “Avec Naufragé volontaire et Forêt sacré le reportage filmé devient une aventure spirituelle”, Radio-Cinéma-Télévision, Vol. 275 (24 April 1955).
- “Le Kon-Tiki ou grandeur et servitudes du reportage filmé”, p. 23.
- Georges Didi-Huberman, “Le Paradoxe du phasme”, Phasmes: essais sur l’apparition (Paris: Minuit, 1998), pp.15-20.
- “Le Kon-Tiki ou grandeur et servitudes du reportage filmé”, p. 23.
- “Mort du documentaire reconsitué: L’Aventure sans retour”.
- “Kon-Tiki et Groenland: Poésie et aventure”.
- “L’écran du fantasme (Bazin et les bêtes)”, p. 37.
- “Ibid, p. 39.
- “Mort tous les après-midi”, p. 65.