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: Godard and the "French Revolution of Cinema" of the 60s  ( 8238 )
Sonny
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« : May 22, 2007, 12:15:55 AM »


However arrogant the guy was, Jean Luc Godard certainly deserves a substantial amount of credit for his contributions to the world of cinema during the 60s.  His influence inspired a whole new meaning to the controversy of the French "new wave" cinema in the 60s with Marxist and existential principles. His films influenced the work of countless directors in Europe, and, though somewhat political in thematic content, the films themselves payed tribute to the emerging ideal of the intellectual freedom of film.

I enjoy French cinema and admire Godard's work for its influence as well as its content.  But I can understand why some don't find his films particularly entertaining. I suppose they take some getting used-to by anyone who is used to watching films purely for their entertainment value.  As for me, I find them very ineteresting.

There are plenty of other important French directors, films and actors to note who have influenced the world of cinema quite greatly.  I thought I'd start with Godard, since he's currently considered one of the main influences that helped spawn the revolutionary era of film.

Band a Part ( or Band of Outsiders) is one of his best, perhaps. Anna Karina's role as Ollie makes the film, in my opinion. She seems innocent enough not to be blamed for the trickery she's later asked to pull.  And she helps the story develop with her decision to help two of her classmates to commit the con that would make them all rich. The scheme involves the specific responsibility of her character.  She finds later, however, that the idea was not as "dandy" as it appeared to be, while her accomplices forced her to help them complete their crime.

Breathless was Godard's first famous film.  And is one of my favorites, although i've only seen it once.  It certainly reflects Godard's political tendencies by approahing American cinema with its stylistic concept of American culture. 




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« #1 : May 22, 2007, 01:32:10 AM »

I do enjoy Breathless, but my personal favorite has to be....



Alphaville.

Also, when I bought my prescription sunglasses, I purposefully went with a non-athletic sort so I could walk around in a suit and pretend to be Godard.

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« : May 22, 2007, 01:34:50 AM Eric »
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« #2 : May 22, 2007, 07:06:07 AM »

Godard can be a very frustrating director if you are not used to his style. Only seen a few of his films, Breathless, Contempt, Aria and Alphaville. Would like to see the whole Lemmy Caution series starring Eddie Constantine. Very hard to find. I think there is 7 or 8 of them. Godard only directed the one.

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« #3 : May 22, 2007, 03:23:47 PM »

Godard can be a very frustrating director if you are not used to his style.
There's more to it than that, however. Like anyone else, Godard has his good films and his so-so ones and his absolutely wretched ones. I recently saw Two or Three Things I Know About Her for the first time and found it to be only slightly more interesting than watching paint dry (I amused myself as best I could by spotting all the 3-colors references to the French flag). Other exercises in futility include Pierrot le fou and Weekend (a single brilliant tracking shot does not a movie make). I've never been able to get too worked up about either Breathless or Band a part, although neither is bad. Godard at his best, IMHO, is represented by Vivre sa vie, Contempt, Alphaville, Masculine/Feminine and A Woman is a Woman. In each of these films he comments wittily on cinema or male-female relationships or both. When he limits himself to those subjects he can do good work, but in the late 60s he decided he needed to get political, and it was his undoing.



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« #4 : May 23, 2007, 12:31:01 AM »

I like Godard. I don't know which Criterion to get next, though: Masculin Feminine or A Woman is a Woman? I've been leaning toward AWiaW, but for some reason MF grabs my attention.

Here's a funny part from an interview(http://findarticles.com/p/articles/mi_m1285/is_n7_v24/ai_16097908/pg_4)

AS: What are your politics right now--that is, do you have any politics?

JLG: Only what you see on the screen.

AS: You were considered a Marxist activist at one time.

JLG: Oh, no.

AS: You were never a Marxist?

JLG: I never read Marx.

AS: But you talked about Marx.

JLG: Yes, but only as a provocation, mixing Mao and Coca-Cola and so forth [in Made in the USA, 1966].

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« #5 : May 23, 2007, 03:27:25 AM »

Kind of ambiguous, a cinematic Jackson Pollard.

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« #6 : April 10, 2010, 09:34:44 AM »

I guess this is no news to those who might be interested but Jean-Luc Godard is releasing a new film called no more or less than Socialisme, rumored to be his last film. I'm not sure if it's official but it's supposed to open at Cannes.

Here are some trailers:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZhqOFWdtDdY

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SS09nVRBimo

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9pdS8jEYzU4&feature=related



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« #7 : April 10, 2010, 03:05:09 PM »

I certainly hope this is his last film. It is painful to watch him operating at the level of self-parody.

Perhaps the more significant news is the release, later this month, of Vivre sa vie on Criterion Blu-ray: Godard's best film in an optimal home-viewing format.



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« #8 : May 24, 2010, 01:15:42 AM »

Fun review of Godard's latest, now called Film Socialisme: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-x3h310ZT1M Other reviews I've read more or less confirm what he says.


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« #9 : May 24, 2010, 09:50:32 AM »

Kermode is the greatest film reviewer we have.



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« #10 : May 24, 2010, 10:45:14 AM »

I certainly hope this is his last film.

I nurtured the very same hope for 40 years. 


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« #11 : May 26, 2010, 01:35:07 AM »

Breathless is being re-released in USA: http://www.variety.com/article/VR1118016176.html?categoryId=13&cs=1


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« #12 : May 26, 2010, 04:27:38 AM »

To be followed quickly by the Blu-ray.



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« #13 : January 11, 2014, 03:37:51 PM »

http://www.filmforum.org/movies/more/alphaville

The Blu-ray must surely soon follow.



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« #14 : March 30, 2016, 10:17:00 AM »

The Essential Godard box is out in the UK and my copy arrived last night. Blu-rays of Breathless, A Woman is a Woman, Contempt, Alphaville, and Pierrot le Fou . I tried watching Alphaville, which I remembered liking a lot. For some reason, I fell asleep in the middle.



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