French director Claude LeLouch made a film called C'etait un Rendezvous that featured a car being driven through the streets of Paris at dawn, by someone who would not stop for any reason – not lights, not cars, nothing. And the whole thing was done in one take. When it was shown in 1976 the public outrage caused it to be banned. Those are the facts. The rest, 36 years later – since LeLouch wouldn't ever reveal who drove or what he (or she) was driving – is still myth, legend and Wikipedia supposition.

The mythology is still so potent that a search on YouTube will bring up the movie itself, the making of, and a ton of videos about the movie or made in homage to it, like this one by Lamborghini. Fitting that it is no longer relegated to the small screen with a Blu-ray release courtesy of the UK's Spirit Level Film.

The launch of the home version is accompanied by a contest that will see someone getting a Ferrari for a weekend and a driving club membership. If you watch it, you'll find the film itself is almost just as entertaining, and Hunger TV has a longer piece on its background. There's a trailer for it just below along with a press release announcing the Blu-ray edition.

Rendezvous in HD from Spirit Level Film on Vimeo.




Show full PR text
Banned French film "Cʼétait un Rendezvous" finally released in high definition

London, England, 27th December 2012 -- Banned in 1976 amongst public outrage, the film that forces it's audience to confront their exhilaration at a totally immoral and reprehensible act has been re-mastered from the original negative in high definition for release on BluRay and DVD.

Seminal French director Claude Lelouchʼs, "Cʼétait un Rendezvous" was for years only available as a pirate VHS changing hands at $50 a piece and more recently via poor quality YouTube streams. As the ultimate adrenaline-fueled bad-boy viewing experience with it's surprise twist at the end itʼs delighted petrolheads and film buffs for over a quarter of a century. It's spawned highly irresponsible copycats (even Jay Leno), is the father of countless road racing video games and over the years has become steeped in myths:
- Was Lelouch really arrested when it was first shown?
- Who drove the car? Was it Lelouch or a hired Formula 1 driver?
- What was the car? Was it really the iconic Ferrari 275 GTB?
- Is it real ? If so, how did he do it?

Terrifying yet life-affirming, Rendezvous was made in one take, with no edits, no closing off streets, no speeding up of footage, no special effects. Often imitated (even Nissan spent
$6m trying to reproduce it for an advert they called "The Run") but never surpassed, it simply has to be seen to be believed.

Richard Symons of Spirit Level Film said "A test Imax screening finally pushed us to remaster and re-release the film in HD - the audience went nuts. The print looked sensational and we were hit with a deluge of requests for a re-mastered re-release and cinema run. As Top Gearʼs Jeremy Clarkson said, "It makes Bullitt look like a cartoon".

Trailer can be viewed on-line at: http://vimeo.com/49004823

To celebrate the launch, Spirit Level Film are giving away a weekend in a Ferrari alongside a dayʼs performance driver training and a years free membership to Club GT - the performance and supercar club to one lucky competition winner. 25 runners-up will receive a copy on BluRay or DVD.

The film will be available from Jan 4th from www.spiritlevelfilm.com , Amazon and all good retail/e-tail outlets.

For further information contact rebecca@spiritlevelfilm.com


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    • 1 Second Ago
  • 10 Comments
      Myself
      • 1 Year Ago
      A few years ago Lelouche said he was driving his Mercedes, ferrari sound was added later in post production
      ranucci
      • 1 Year Ago
      "The rest, 36 years later – since LeLouch wouldn't ever reveal who drove or what he (or she) was driving – is still myth, legend and Wikipedia supposition." There is a video somewhere explaining what he drove (lelouch himself if I remember well) it was his own mercedes saloon, that was then dubbed with ferrari sounds and here it is: http://www.dailymotion.com/video/x4fnwk_making-of-c-etait-un-rendez-vous_shortfilms#.UOb9jjWx564
        James
        • 1 Year Ago
        @ranucci
        I think the mystique behind this video clip is a lot greater than the actual video clip itself is. The vehicle is not moving at very high speeds relative to the other traffic, the engine and tire noises do not match the movements of the vehicle, and there is little perceived danger in the stunt. If someone just showed me this video clip, without the mythical, legendary lead-up to it, I would think it wholy blasé, and I don't think it is because of a supposed modern inure mentality to risk.
      Wyrmdog
      • 1 Year Ago
      Sold. I love this thing.
      davebo357
      • 1 Year Ago
      The first time I saw this it was pretty exciting. It's definitely a classic but I'm not sure the film quality really warrants me buying it on blu-ray. Nowadays plenty of idiots on youtube break the law with HD GoPro cameras stuckk to their cars, but they certainly lack the thought put into this film. Someone with filmmaking and driving skill should do something like this but modern.
        James
        • 1 Year Ago
        @davebo357
        And BMW used to do little 10 minute long story clips featuring their cars and the actor Clive Owen in a series called "the Hire". My favorite was the one with the Z4 called "Hostage".
          Stumpy
          • 1 Year Ago
          @James
          Yeah, loved the M5 one too. Great stuff. I still have the DVD with all the episodes. (My sister used to work for BMW).
        Jason
        • 1 Year Ago
        @davebo357
        They did, it was called the Drive, a promotional piece for the new Nissan Z a decade ago. I believe it is set in Prague and while perfomed under safer circumstances is fun to watch anyway. Came across my old DVD the other day, in fact.
      Soul Shinobi
      • 1 Year Ago
      Yaaaaaaaay!
      ranucci
      • 1 Year Ago
      oups didn't see it was in the article