A marvellous, highly influential cinéma-vérité examination of a specific time and place: Paris in May 1962, going through its first spring of peace since 1939 (the signing of the Evian agreement in March 1962 having finally put an end to the long-running Algerian troubles). The basic method is simple: Marker and his colleagues (unseen) elicit comments on work, money, happiness, etc, from a cross-section of Parisians. But these personal thoughts are firmly and evocatively placed within a wider socio-political context, as the film proceeds to show footage of police charges, rioters, strikers, and so forth. What distinguishes the film most, however, is its wit, both verbal and visual, so that it is simultaneously illuminating and funny. (The film was cut under Marker's supervision from the original 180 minutes to 123 minutes.