"Diary Of A Country Priest" Is Released
Diary of a Country Priest (original French title: Journal d'un curé de campagne) is a 1951 French film directed by Robert Bresson, and starring Claude Laydu.
It was closely based on the novel of the same name by Georges Bernanos. Published in 1937, the novel received the Grand prix du roman de l'Académie française. It tells the story of a young, sickly priest, who has just arrived in his first parish, a village in northern France. The novel has been translated to English by Pamela Morris and was published the same year as the French original.
Two other French scriptwriters, Jean Aurenche and Pierre Bost had wanted to make film adaptations of the novel. Bernanos rejected Aurenche's first draft, and by the time Bresson got around to the task, Bernanos had died. Bresson said he "would have taken more liberties" if Bernanos were still alive. The film had considerable influences on Martin Scorsese's Taxi Driver.
Robert Bresson's bleak but richly photographed film is about the suffering and downfall of a young, critically ill priest (Claude Laydu) who struggles in vain to gain some kind, any kind, of ecclesiastical foothold in a rural area bent on circumventing him and the church. , The New York Times