Posted in French film, Great movie, Jean-Luc Goddard

VIVRE SA VIE: UN FILM EN DOUZE TABLEAU (1962)

Vivre sa vie

A film by Jean-Luc Godard

Cast: Anna Karina, Sady Rebbot, André S. Labarthe

English title: My life to live. 

I put this one in my category of great film because it is. New wave cinema what a great time for film maker. Here is the sad thing about cinema, art film are out,Self-conscious films are out, film that tis the edge of cinema are out, today it is all about getting a mass off people into the movie theater. Most film now day is done on the formula  mode, it is the same formula manipulated many times and yet they are awarded for that. There are not too many directors that take a chance on being creative. and that is a shame there.

Now the film, Nana (Anna Karina) has porcelain skin, her wary eyes, her helmet of shiny black hair, her chic outfits, always smoking, hiding her feelings, she is a young woman of Paris. Goddard shot her in a close up like in a mug shot so you can see her face expression but yet she reveals nothing willingly.Each shot begins with Michel Legrand music, which stops abruptly, which an other shot begins. The music tries to explain but it fails. In the next shot we learn that she broke up with her husband and leaves her child with him but has so kind of plan for herself. Pay attention how Goddard shot the film he always shoot it in an unconventional way.The movie is in 12 sections, each one with titles like an old-fashioned novel. It is the life of a Parisian woman and her slow descent into prostitution , basically in 12 chapters. Godard said he shot the film in sequence. It is an art raw, unsentimental,  and abrupt. It is her life to live.

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vivre-sa-vie

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Posted in French film, Jean-Luc Goddard

TOUT VAS BIEN (1972)

991963Toutvabien

A film by Jean-Luc Godard 

Cast: Yves Montand, Jane Fonda, Vittorio Caprioli

Here is a great film by Godard and many of you will not understand what he was trying to do. First he never told the usual story like any other director. He did film his way the way he saw it, and sometimes it did not make sense but who cares. Here is the film that he told like a documentary but the usual way. Yves Montand who plays a director who directs advertising was a film director. He is married to Jane Fonda who speak very well english here and fast like most french people like me but delivers a great performance as Yves Montand’s wife / journalist, here is the really kicker this was in 1972 when everything was in Chaos there was a recession in France so Godard took advantage of this film this film out of the ordinary. You see Yves Montand and his wife had an interview with this factory boss who got taken hostages but the employees because there were unsatisfied of the condition the were working in. The film is done in a narrative voice. Like i said some of the film will not make any sense but who cares it is well film has few dialogue if there is some it is long and to the point. There is a scene where the boss is trying to got to the bathroom and the employees won’t let him because he was bitching about them taking to long to go to the bathroom. Funny scene here.

Like i said well film by this genius director who manages to do a film like a documentary but out of the ordinary Tout vas bien right, right. A film full of Blah! blah! and that is fine here , tout vas bien. It is an art film and tout vas bien. You see here the acting is natural as they come and tout vas bien. If you are a true Godard fan well tout vas bien. You will love this film. Terminé. Trust me tout vas bien.

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Godard on Tout vas bien. 

Posted in French film, Jean-Luc Goddard

UNE FEMME EST UNE FEMME (1961)

A film by Jean-Luc Goddard.

Cast: Anna Karina, Jean-Claude Brialy, Jean-Paul Belmondo.

The movie stars Godard’s wife, Anna Karina, who was to achieve her own greatness in his next film. She wants to have a baby and when her boyfriend comes homes she drop the bomb shell on him. Angela Recamier is her name, and Jean-Claude Brialy plays Emile Recamier, but the movie strongly suggests they are not married. Nor does Emile want a baby, although his friend Alfred Lubitsch (Jean-Paul Belmondo) would be happy to impregnate her and so would I. The movie, which comes advertised as Godard’s tribute to the Hollywood musical, is not a musical, and indeed treats music with some contempt, filling the sound track with brief bursts of music that resemble traditional movie scoring, but then interrupting them arbitrarily. Angela is shown a photograph that Alfred claims shows Emile cheating on her with another woman. As she studies the photo, the movie cuts from her face to his face to the photo, and then again and again. Sometimes there is a little dialogue. The photo keeps reappearing on the screen. The effect is to suggest the way she becomes obsessed with the hurtful image and can’t stop thinking about it, and as a visual evocation of jealousy, it’s kind of brilliant. The movie is bright and lively and Goddard went on to make better one. As he goes along in his career he got better and better, Thank god for this. I like this one.

Posted in French film, Jean-Luc Goddard

PIERROT LE FOU (1965)

A film by Jean Luc Goddard.
Cast: Jean-Paul Belmondo, Anna Karina, Graziella Galvani.
Pierrot escapes his boring society and travels from Paris to the Mediterranean Sea with Marianne, a girl chased by hit-men from Algeria. They lead an unorthodox life, always on the run.

There is not too many people who likes Goddard’s film because they make no sense. But there is also a lot of people who will like this one. Pierrot le Fou was made in 1966 but only released in the United States in 1969. It seems to be a gangster picture: Jean-Paul Belmondo leaves his wife and goes to live with his former girlfriend, Anna Karina. She has apparently killed a man. They go on the lam in a stolen car, wind up on a deserted island, play the Robinson Crusoe bit for awhile, and then go back to the mainland to face the music. But Godard never sticks closely enough to this plot to make it important. He will have a scene that is perfectly conventional, like a scene in a Hollywood gangster movie. But it doesn’t come out of anything or lead into anything. There is a scene in the movie where Belmondo wakes up in Anna Karina’s apartment. She is in the kitchen. He is in bed, smoking (a reference, if you will, to “Breathless” (1960)). The camera follows her into the bedroom and back to the kitchen. She sings a song to him. A piano supplies a modest background. It is one of the most charming musical scenes in recent movies. She continues to sing, and goes back to the kitchen. In passing, the camera notes a dead body. It is just there. Nothing is made of it, but its presence changes the tone of the scene. Godard goes into a series of three close-ups: of her, of him, of her again. These shots cannot quite be described, but watch the movement of the actors’ eyes. Instead of moving his camera, Godard moves Belmondo’s eyes so that we “see” Karina moving. And we know she is going past the body again. This is an extraordinarily complex, effective scene: Not that it means anything, but that it is something. It is a feeling, a mood. there this is a great film from Goddard. A must see.

Posted in Films from 30’s to 60’s, Jean-Luc Goddard, New Wave Cinema, U.S. Film

ALPHAVILLE (1965)

Lemmy Caution, an American private-eye, arrives in Alphaville, a futuristic city on another planet. His very American character is at odds with the city’s ruler, an evil scientist named Von Braun, who has outlawed love and self-expression. The line by Alpha60 that begins “Time is the substance of which I am made” is paraphrased from the 1946 essay “A New Refutation of Time” by famous Argentinean writer and fantasist Jorge Luis Borges, which reads: “Our destiny is not frightful by being unreal; it is frightful because it is irreversible and iron-clad. Time is the substance I am made of. Time is a river which sweeps me along, but I am the river; it is a tiger which destroys me, but I am the tiger; it is a fire which consumes me, but I am the fire. The world, unfortunately, is real; I, unfortunately, am Borges.” Inspired the name of the German rock group Alphaville. Despite the fact that the film is a work of science fiction and supposed to be in a city of the future, all the sets were existing locations in Paris in 1965, and all the weapons are conventional firearms.

Posted in Cult film, Films from 30’s to 60’s, French film, Jean-Luc Goddard, New Wave Cinema

A BOUT DE SOUFFLE (1960)

There was before Breathless, and there was after Breathless. Jean-Luc Godard burst onto the film scene in 1960 with this jazzy, free-form, and sexy homage to the American film genres that inspired him as a writer for Cahiers du cinéma. With its lack of polish, surplus of attitude, anything-goes crime narrative, and effervescent young stars Jean-Paul Belmondo and Jean Seberg, Breathless helped launch the French New Wave and ensured cinema would never be the same. Michel Poiccard, an irresponsible sociopath and small-time thief, steals a car and impulsively murders the motorcycle policeman who pursues him. Now wanted by the authorities, he renews his relationship with Patricia Franchini, a hip American girl studying journalism at the Sorbonne, whom he had met in Nice a few weeks earlier. Before leaving Paris, he plans to collect a debt from an underworld acquaintance and expects her to accompany him on his planned getaway to Italy. Even with his face in the local papers and media, Poiccard seems oblivious to the dragnet that is slowly closing around him as he recklessly pursues his love of American movies and libidinous interest in the beautiful American. Despite reports to the contrary, Jean-Luc Godard did not shoot the film without a script; however, he did not have a finished script at the beginning, instead writing scenes in the morning and filming them that day. See also Pierrot le Fou. To give a more detached, spontaneous quality, Jean-Luc Godard fed the actors their lines as scenes were being filmed. Director Jean-Luc Godard couldn’t afford a dolly, so he pushed the cinematographer around in a wheelchair through many scenes of the film. He got the idea from Jean-Pierre Melville, who had used the same low-budget technique in Bob le Flambeur and Le silence de la mer. According to Jean-Pierre Melville, Godard asked him for consultation during the post-production stage because the first edit was too long for distribution. Melville suggested Godard remove all scenes that slowed down the action (his own turn as novelist Parvulesco included). But instead of excluding entire scenes, Godard cut little bits from here and there. This led to the “jump cut” technique this movie introduced. Melville declared the result to be excellent. The character of Michel Poiccard uses the name Laszlo Kovacs as an alias. It is often wrongly assumed this was an homage to the cinematographer of the same name: the film was made long before Kovacs established himself in the movie industry. It was actually a reference to the character played by Jean-Paul Belmondo in Claude Chabrol’s Leda, earlier the same year. Jean-Paul Belmondo was very surprised by the warm reception the film received. Immediately after production he was convinced it was so bad that he thought the film would never be released.

Posted in Films from 30’s to 60’s, French film, Jean-Luc Goddard, New Wave Cinema

BANDE A PART (1964)

Two crooks with a fondness for old Hollywood B-movies convince a languages student to help them commit a robbery. The alienated young trio is marvelous, particularly Anna Karina, and the early scenes of their clearly overdeveloped fantasy lives are splendidly handled. he alienated young trio is marvelous, particularly Anna Karina, and the early scenes of their clearly overdeveloped fantasy lives are splendidly handled. With this film Godard returned to the (petty) crime genre and his fascination with American pop culture. When naive Odile tells them she lives in a house where a large amount of money is cached, their imagination runs wild. Fantasizing and discussing Hollywood B-movies and pulp literature, they decide to rob the house with the help of Odile. But this one generally is an entertaining and insightful film, with the dancing sequence in the bar justly memorable, as is the 9-minute tour of the Louvre. This one is my favorite of Jean-Luck Goddard. Still, essential for movie buffs. Godard even credited himself as Jean-Luc “Cinema” Godard. Quentin Tarantino paid tribute to this film naming his production company A Band Apart.