Godard's documentation of late 1960s Western counter-culture, examining the Black Panthers, referring to works by LeRoi Jones and Eldridge Cleaver. Other notable subjects are the role of ...
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Originally filmed in December 1968, "The Rock and Roll Circus" was originally intended to be released as a television special. The special was filmed over two nights and featured not only ... See full summary »
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Set in the near future, Paula, a leftist writer, goes from Paris to the French town of Atlantic-Cité when she learns of the death of a former colleague and lover, Richard P. Is she there to... See full summary »
In this modern retelling of the Virgin birth, Mary is a student who plays basketball and works at her father's petrol station; Joseph is an earnest dropout who drives a cab. The angel ... See full summary »
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On a movie set, in a factory, and at a hotel, Godard explores the nature of work, love and film making. While Solidarity takes on the Polish government, a Polish film director, Jerzy, is ... See full summary »
Godard's documentation of late 1960s Western counter-culture, examining the Black Panthers, referring to works by LeRoi Jones and Eldridge Cleaver. Other notable subjects are the role of news media, the mediated image, a growing technocratic society, women's liberation, the May revolt in France and the power of language. Cutting between three major scenes, including the Rolling Stones in the studio, the film is visually intercut with Eve Democracy (Wiazemsky) using graffiti which amalgamates organisations, corporations and ideologies. Godard also examines the role of the revolutionary within Western culture. Although he believes Western culture needs to be destroyed, it can only be done so by the rejection of intellectualisation. "There is only one way to be an intellectual revolutionary, and that is to give up being an intellectual" Written by
This "meeting" of two of the finest artists of the 20th Century - Jean-Luc Godard and The Rolling Stones - is truly a missed opportunity. The footage of the band recording their landmark song (probably my favorite Stones track) is certainly fascinating, as we watch the initially slow musical accompaniment for the song taking shape and metamorphose into the energetic, percussion-heavy final version we're familiar with. Sadly, it's also quite apparent here that Brian Jones (who sits in his booth playing his acoustic guitar, rarely communicating with his bandmates except to ask for a cigarette and eventually disappearing altogether in the second half of the film) was slipping away fast.
Unfortunately for us viewers, Godard (in full-blown "political activist" mode) unwisely intersperses the recording sessions with lots of boring stuff featuring militant black people spouting "Black Power" philosophy in a junkyard, white political activists reading their "sacred" texts in a book shop while members of the general public are made to slap two of their comrades and give the Nazi salute and, most embarrassingly of all perhaps, Godard's current wife, Anne Wiazemsky (playing Eve Democracy!) is seen being followed by a camera crew in a field and asked the most obtuse "topical" questions imaginable to which she merely answers in the affirmative or the negative!
As if this wasn't enough, the film has undoubtedly the murkiest soundtrack I've ever had the misfortune to hear (so that I often had to rely on the forced Italian subtitles present on the VHS copy I was watching) and I'd bet that even Robert Altman would have objected to Godard's occasional overlapping on the soundtrack of the Stones recording, the Black Power spoutings, an anonymous narrator reading a (mercifully) hilarious pulp novel, etc. For some inexplicable reason then, the film ends on a beach where an unidentified film crew is filming a battle sequence!!
Godard's original intention was to not include the song "Sympathy For The Devil" in its entirety and when producer Iain Quarrier overruled him, he jumped up on London's National Film Theater stage following a screening of the film and knocked him out! Godard's version, entitled ONE PLUS ONE, is also available on a double-feature R2 DVD including both cuts of the film but it's highly unlikely that I'll be bothering with it any time soon...
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