Manifesto of Ivens' poetic realism, this documentary was first conceived as a lyric view on the Seine, but it reveals a more complex and ar ticulate vision. The river becomes an abstract place, the beating heart of a city and its inhabitants, the slow and unrestrainable flow of Paris leisure, work and feelings, expressing an idea of empathy between man, his surroundings, nature. If the images alone and their flow could allude to an optimistic and appeasing vision, the commentary given by Jacques Prévert's poem adds a touch of melancholy and uncer tainty. "For me the film was just this: il est toujours la vie." When the Seine meets Paris was the first film Ivens shot in France and an immediate success: Palmares (Golden Palm) for short film at Cannes, Golden Gate at the San Francisco Festival, awarded at Oberhaussen Festival. The experience Ivens got from this work, which underlines his love for Paris, will be ver y useful to him eight years later, when he shoots Pour le Mistral: "What I learnt during the shooting helped me later to under stand how I should deal with, or rather perceive, the capricious wind of southern France, the Mistral."