Castro Theatre Sat, May 4, 2019 4:30 PM
Film Info
Director:Marcel L’Herbier
Cast:Jaque Catelain
Roger Karl
Marcelle Pradot
Claire Prélia
Suzanne Doris
Philippe Hériat
Charles Boyer
Total Run Time:75 min.


Musical accompaniment by the Guenter Buchwald and Frank Bockius with intertitle narration by Paul McGann
A first-born son brings great pride and hope for the future to the family of a Breton fisherman. But like the sea itself the boy’s nature cannot be controlled. Made at a time in French cinema when experimentation and narrative storytelling were one and the same, L’Homme du Large borrows from all of it for a lyrical portrait of a traditional way of life negotiating threats from the modern world. Shooting on location in the Breton Isles, Marcel L’Herbier mixed professional and nonprofessional actors, documentary-style shooting with meticulous mise-en-scène, and expressive intertitles with striking photography for what is often considered his first masterwork. Big themes of good and evil play out in this distinctive culture as L’Herbier brings mythological struggles down to earth.

Print courtesy of Gaumont Pathé Archives, Paris


Introduction by Serge Bromberg


Copresented by Alliance Française, Cultural Services of the French Embassy in the United States and Litquake

Additional Information

 Image Credits: Pamela Gentile

Musical accompaniment by the Guenter Buchwald and Frank Bockius with intertitle narration by Paul McGann
Conductor, composer, pianist, and violinist Guenter Buchwald is a pioneer of the renaissance in silent film music. He has accompanied silent films for thirty-eight years with a repertoire of more than three thousand titles and has conducted orchestras worldwide from Iceland to Romania, Tokyo to Zurich. In great demand as a composer, he has scored silent films as varied as Suzuki and Ota’s What Made Her Do It?, René Clair`s Paris qui dort, Chaplin´s Pawn Shop, and Murnau’s Nosferatu. A soloist known for his virtuoso improvisation, he has appeared regularly at film festivals in Berlin, Bonn, Bologna, Zurich, Pordenone, and Seattle. He is a lecturer at the Film Science Institute at the University of Zurich and resident conductor of the Freiburg Philharmonic Orchestra for Silent Film in Concert. He is cofounder of the Silent Movie Music Company and is musical director of Bristol’s Slapstick Silent Film Festival in England. He made his first appearance at the San Francisco Silent Film Festival in 2013.

Versatile percussionist Frank Bockius specializes in jazz and is versed in medieval, flamenco, and Latin music styles. He has performed for dance and theater companies as well as in his own bands, including the jazz quintet Whisper Hot and the percussion ensemble Timpanicks. He joined the Guenter Buchwald's Silent Movie Music Company twenty years ago and has since performed for silent films at festivals in Kyoto, Pordenone, and Sodankylä, Finland. He made his first appearance at the San Francisco Silent Film Festival in 2014.

British actor Paul McGann made his film debut opposite Richard Grant in the cult movie Withnail and I and he went on to appear in Steven Spielberg’s Empire of the Sun, Ken Russell’s The Rainbow, and David Fincher’s Alien 3. His television work includes the eighth incarnation of the Doctor in the BBC’s Doctor Who, a recurring role in the Idris Elba-led Luther, and his unmistakable voice has graced many BBC documentaries. McGann first appeared at the San Francisco Silent Film Festival in 2012 to narrate South: Sir Ernest Shackleton’s Glorious Epic of the Antarctic.