Find Your Film Spotlights ‘Be Natural: The Untold Story of Alice Blaché’

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FILMMAKER ALICE GUY-BLACHÉ Courtesy of Be Natural Productions
Films, at their very very best, can be a pure discovery. Be Natural: The Untold Story of Alice Guy-Blaché introduces us to the first female directors in cinema to craft a narrative film. Director Pamela B. Green spent years crafting this documentary which is narrated and executive produced by Jodie Foster. The documentary, as well as Guy-Blaché diverse work, is spotlighted on the latest episode of Find Your Film.

Podcast co-host Eric Holmes discovered Be Natural: The Untold Story of Alice Guy-Blaché during his research on groundbreaking artists from the silent era. On Find Your Film, we have spotlighted some of our favorite directors (William Friedkin, Joseph B. Lewis, Mario Bava, Dario Argento), but Holmes wanted to bring some much needed diversity to our coverage.

The documentary shows Alice Guy-Blache’s rise from a Gaumont secretary to the head of production. She was also the head of her own studio in Fort Lee, New Jersey where she served as a writer, director and producer of countless features.

One of the many strengths of the documentary is director Pamela B. Green’s decision to frame the narrative from a detective’s point of view. We are amazed by Guy-Blaché accomplishments in cinema, but a great deal of the film deals with what happened to the artist when she faded into obscurity. All of these topics are covered in our podcast, but if you want more information on the documentary, please go to its official website.

FILMMAKER ALICE GUY-BLACHÉ (ON CAMERA PLATFORM BEHIND CAMERA TRIPOD) ON SET OF THE LIFE OF CHRIST IN FONTAINEBLEAU, FRANCE, IN 1906
Courtesy of Collection Société française de photographie

Eric Holmes, Bruce Purkey and I absolutely love the documentary, and on a superficial level it’s an immersive viewing experience even if learning about history may not be your primary reason for watching a movie. I’m actually amazed that a movie or miniseries based on Alice Guy-Blaché has yet to be made (at least from my limited knowledge!).

Bruce Purkey and Eric Holmes rented the film on YouTube and I watched it for free via Kanopy. Being a physical media guy, I’ll be purchasing this film on DVD and supportiong this documentary as much as possible.

 

Take a listen to our lastest Find Your Film episode as we discusse Be Natural: The Untold Story of Alice Guy-Blaché (you can also listen via Apple Podcasts or Spotify):

 

 

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