The Image Book (2018)

JEAN-LUC GODARD Bil’s rating (out of 5): BBB.5.  Switzerland/France, 2018.  Casa Azul Films, Ecran Noir productions.  Screenplay by Jean-Luc Godard.  Cinematography by Fabrice Aragno.  Produced by Fabrice Aragno, Mitra Farahani.  Production Design by Jean-Paul Battaggia.  Film Editing by Jean-Luc Godard.  Cannes Film Festival 2018.  Toronto International Film Festival 2018. Jean-Luc Godard whittles away at his editing machine to once again come up with a visual…

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Goodbye To Language 3D (Adieu Au Langage)

BB.5 (out of 5) Jean-Luc Godard is once again the provocateur with this first feature foray into 3D filmmaking, expanding on themes that are suggested in his 3X3D short The Three Disasters.  At the centre of the action are a man and woman traipsing about their home in various states of dishabille, spouting ideas of…

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3X3D

BBB (out of 5) Three short films by three filmmakers making their way into the world of 3D storytelling, commissioned by a Portuguese arts council and resulting in three very different experiences. The first and best, Just In Time, is by Peter Greenaway, a triptych through Portuguese cultural history that employs gorgeous imagery and maxes…

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1 P.M.

BB.5 (out of 5) The plan was for Jean-Luc Godard to team up with D.A. Pennebaker and make a film called 1AM (or “One American Movie”), the description of which we get in detail at a production meeting that begins this interesting venture. The result, its new title standing for “One Parallel Movie”, is one…

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Joy of Learning (Le Gai Savoir)

B (out of 5) Godard explores the obsessions typical of his essay-like ventures, mainly the commodification of sexuality and warfare in the post-World War II era, without adding much to the experience in this dithering experiment of a film. Juliet Berto and Jean-Pierre Léaud  discuss matters of popular culture and politics on a bare stage with…

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Six In Paris (Paris vu Par…)

BBB.5 (out of 5) Six filmmakers of the Nouvelle Vague combine 16mm short films that each take place in different neighbourhoods of the City of Lights, all of them light and frothy to varying degrees of success.  Jean Douchet provides a terrific start with the most delightful sequence, the tale of an American girl bedded…

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Une Femme Mariee (Une Femme Mariee: Suite de Fragments D’Un)

BBB.5 (out of 5) More pensive investigation of the human condition in an increasingly commodified post-war France, featuring a gorgeous Macha Méril as a married woman caught between two men.  On the one hand she is having an affair with Bernard Noël that she doesn’t feel all that guilty about, but on the other, is being married…

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Two Or Three Things I Know About Her (2 Ou 3 Choses Que Je Sais D’Elle)

BBBB (out of 5) Jean-Luc Godard’s listless nouvelle vague film is a love poem to the great city of Paris (the ‘her’ of the title).  It shows families getting by on smaller incomes, attitudes towards the Vietnam war and the atom bomb, and even housewives who work as prostitutes during the day without their husband’s…

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Made In U.S.A.

BBB (out of 5) Godard once again combines his cinematic exuberance with his youthful political rebellion for a visually striking, if dry, experiment in film. Anna Karina is shot-for-shot perfection as a colourful private eye searching the streets of “Atlantic-Cité” for her ex-boyfriend. Of course, Atlantic City is purely Parisian when seen through Godard’s eye, and…

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Masculin Feminin (Masculin-Feminin: 15 Faits Precis)

BB.5 (out of 5) It’s hard to figure out what exactly Godard was going for with this one. Even his rambliest, most disjointed films have a purpose or theme, but here it feels like he’s making it up as he goes along.  It concerns relationships between men and women, namely that between Jean-Pierre Léaud (at his…

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Pierrot Le Fou

BBBBB (out of 5) Jean-Paul Belmondo takes his fancy Italian wife to a party, leaving his maid’s niece (Anna Karina) to babysit their children. What we find out in a few short plot jumps is that the two of them were lovers years before, and as soon as they see each other again decide to…

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Alphaville (Alphaville: Une Etrange Aventure De Lemmy Caution)

BB.5 (out of 5) Jean-Luc Godard’s science-fiction thriller has a lot of interesting elements to recommend itself, but the story is flimsy and the pace jarring. Eddie Constantine plays Lemmy Caution, an American private eye who arrives in a city called Alphaville on a planet far away in the galaxy, where an evil scientist has…

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