This explosive work about the conflict between the spirit and the flesh is the epitome of the sensuous style of Michael Powell and Emeric Pressburger. A group of nuns—played by some of Britain’s finest actresses, including Deborah Kerr, Kathleen Byron, and Flora Robson—struggle to establish a convent in the Himalayas, while isolation, extreme weather, altitude, and culture clashes all conspire to drive the well-intentioned missionaries mad. A darkly grand film that won Oscars for Alfred Junge’s art direction and Jack Cardiff’s cinematography , Black Narcissus is one of the greatest achievements by two of cinema’s true visionaries.
Video introduction by French filmmaker Bertrand Tavernier
Audio commentary featuring the late director Michael Powell and filmmaker Martin Scorsese
The Audacious Adventurer, a 2006 video piece in which Tavernier discusses Black Narcissus and Powell
Profile of “Black Narcissus” (2000), a twenty-five-minute documentary
Painting with Light, a twenty-seven-minute documentary about Jack Cardiff’s Oscar-winning cinematography on Black Narcissus