Confession [Criterion Collection] [2 Discs] [DVD] [1970]

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Special Features

  • You Speak of Prague: The Second Trial of Artur London, a 1970 on-set documentary by Set Photographer Chris Marker, featuring Costa-Gavras, source book coauthor Artur London, actors Yves Montand and Simone Signoret, and Screenwriter Jorge Semprún
  • Portrait London, a 1981 French program featuring Artur and Lise London discussing their experiences as political prisoners
  • Interview with Montand from 1970
  • New interview with Editor Françoise Bonnot
  • One-hour conversation between Costa-Gavras and film scholar Peter von Bagh from 1998
  • New interview with John Michalczyk, author of Costa-Gavras: The Political Fiction Film
  • Plus: An essay by scholar Dina Iordanova


This Costa-Gavras thriller stars Yves Montand as an East European government functionary, inexplicably imprisoned by his Communist superiors. He is not told why he has been arrested, nor has his wife (Simone Signoret) been informed of his fate. Undergoing psychological torture, Montand is grilled about his wartime activities. At the end of his rope, Montand agrees to sign several papers that are thrust before him. He eventually discovers that he's to be a defendant in a "show trial" conducted by his government. He never knows the whys and wherefores of the whole affair -- nor does the audience. The Confession was based on the true story of loyal Communist Arthur London's unjustified purge trial of 1951. Despite the film's confusion, Costa-Gavras' Kafkaesque view of the world, in which the individual is overwhelmed by events that he can't possibly begin to understand, struck a responsive chord in the chaotic early '70s. ~ Hal Erickson, Rovi

Cast & Crew

  • Yves Montand
    Yves Montand - Gerard
  • Simone Signoret
    Simone Signoret - Lise
  • Image coming soon
    Michel Vitold - Smola
  • Jean Bouise
    Jean Bouise - Boss
  • Image coming soon
    Georges Aubert
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