La Jetée (The Jetty and The Pier) is a 28-minute black and white science fiction film by Chris Marker. Constructed almost entirely from still photos, it tells the story of a post-nuclear war experiment in time travel. The survivors of a destroyed Paris in the aftermath of World War III live underground in the Palais de Chaillot galleries. They research time travel, hoping to send someone back before the devastating war "to summon the past and future to the aid of the present." The traveler is a male prisoner; his vague but obsessive childhood memory of witnessing a woman (Hélène Chatelain) during a violent incident on the boarding platform ("The Jetty") at Orly Airport is the key to his journey back in time.
He is thrown back to the past again and again. He repeatedly meets and speaks to the woman who was present at the terminal. After his successful passages to the past, the experimenters attempt to send him into the far future. In a brief meeting with the technologically advanced people of the future, he is given a power unit sufficient to regenerate his own destroyed society. On his return, he is cast aside by his jailers to die. Before he can be executed, he is contacted by the people of the future, who offer to help him escape to their time, but he asks to be returned to the time of his childhood. He is returned, only to find the violent incident he partially witnessed as a child was his own death as an adult.