Surrealism and science: the weird world of Jean Painleve.

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About this work


This selection of short films from fifty years of passionate scientific enquiry includes all of Jean Painleve's most famous works: Mathusalem (1926), The Sea Horse (1934), The Vampire (1939-1945), Sea Urchins (1954), Shrimp Stories (1964), Hyas and Stenorhyncus (1929), The Love Life of an Octopus (1965), Acera, or The Witches' Dance (1972) and Liquid Crystals (1976). Surrealism, science and cinema were intertwined throughout Painleve's life. He made outrageous jokes and comparisons in otherwise sober scientific studies, comparing a vampire bat to 'Dracula' star Bela Lugosi and treating sea creatures like film stars. He also added remarkable music to his films, ranging from Maurice Jaubert to Duke Ellington and the electronic pioneer Pierre Henry. Science, politics and a taste for life's bizarre curiosities were all compatible to Painleve's outlook. As a result, he was able to bridge the gulf that normally separates science from art and documentary from cinema, and to be a true prophet of the multimedia era that he lived to see.


France : (not known), 1995.

Physical description

1 video cassette (VHS) (95 min.) : sound, color, PAL

Copyright note

Connisseur Video and Les Documents Jean Painleve.

Creator/production credits

Directed by Jean Painleve.



Where to find it

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