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The Valley (Obscured by Clouds) (1972)

La vallée (original title)
| Drama | April 1977 (USA)
Filmmaker Barbet Schroeder explores themes of sexual freedom, mind alteration, and pursuit of paradise against the backdrop of an early 70's encounter with the Mapuga rain forest tribe in upland New Guinea.

Director:

Barbet Schroeder

Writers:

Barbet Schroeder (screenplay), Barbet Schroeder (dialogue) | 3 more credits »
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Cast

Cast overview:
Bulle Ogier ... Viviane
Jean-Pierre Kalfon ... Gaëtan
Michael Gothard ... Olivier
Valérie Lagrange ... Hermine
Monique Giraudy Monique Giraudy ... Monique
Jérôme Beauvarlet Jérôme Beauvarlet ... Yann
Bob Mac Kay Bob Mac Kay
Charles Ivano Charles Ivano
The Mapuga Tribe and its Chiefs The Mapuga Tribe and its Chiefs ... Themselves
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Storyline

Viviane, a French Consul's wife, is in New Guinea to find exotic feathers for export to Paris. She encounters four European travelers who are en route to "La Vallée": The Valley, high in the Guinean mountains, is shown on maps as 'Obscured by Clouds' and is beyond their previous experiences. Viviane joins their trek to find rare feathers and soon becomes entwined in their journey. Their extended stay with the Mapuga tribe brings a denouement between western and indigenous values before their final quest toward the 'Valley of the Gods'. Written by Neal Wells <nealypie@yahoo.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Drama

Certificate:

See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

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Details

Country:

France

Language:

French | English

Release Date:

April 1977 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

The Valley See more »

Filming Locations:

Papua New Guinea

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color (Eastmancolor)

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The soundtrack to this film was released as a Pink Floyd album. Due to a spat with the film company after filming was complete, the Floyd decided not to mention the planned film title, "La Vallee," in the album's title and instead chose to call the release "Obscured By Clouds," echoing a line of dialogue from the film. In response, "Obscured By Clouds" was added as a subtitle so it could gain from Pink Floyd's popularity. This turned out to be a good move as Pink Floyd would soon gain even more fame with the release of "Dark Side of the Moon" just a few months later. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Narrator: [V.O] In the heart of New Guinea, one of the world's largest islands, the Australians discovered these mountains in 1954. No roads lead to them. They are inaccessible. We are above unexplored regions. They are not on the map or more precisely, they are shown only as white spots. It is the unknown.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Pink Floyd: Wot's... Uh The Deal? (2017) See more »

Soundtracks

Mudmen
Written by Pink Floyd
Performed by Pink Floyd
See more »

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User Reviews

Slow-paced, mysterious and ultimately engrossing
17 October 2004 | by A.N.See all my reviews

Without giving too much away, this is an intellectual road trip movie with a documentary atmosphere in many scenes. It is somewhat muddled for the first 15 minutes, but then you can really get into it (if you're ever going to). It relies on atmosphere more than plot, but it did have a clear meaning to me. Overall it's fairly sobering and I can't say it will leave you happy.

I didn't see this as a "hippie" film, rather a commentary on the human condition. One oddity was the interspersing of French subtitled dialog with segments of non-dubbed English. The scenery was very lush and I don't think a second of the film was shot in a studio.

People who didn't like this are probably in the short-attention-span crowd. I don't think this film has anything to do with being a Floyd fan. The music is mostly in the background and doesn't quite fit what you're watching anyway. Any number of low-key instrumental soundtracks may have made more sense. It really doesn't need music at all, except for the tribal chants. Only a few songs from the Floyd CD were apparent, but I know why they called the album "Obscured By Clouds."


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