Paul is young, just demobbed from national service in the French Army, and dishillusioned with civilian life. As his girlfriend builds herself a career as a pop singer, Paul becomes more ... See full summary »
Carmen is a member of a terrorist gang who falls in love with a young police officer guarding a bank that she and her cohorts try to rob. She leads him on while dragging the two of them ... See full summary »
To see this work is to realize what becomes of a man whose monumental contributions to his craft/art came many decades prior. It's a shame that Jean-Luc Godard, grandmaster of the French New Wave, who once brought unprecedented spunk and verve to his films of the early 60's, all the while shattering and redefining most accepted cinematic notions for a new generation of filmgoers and filmmakers, now is forced to deal with his downfall. Yet he refuses to acknowledge the glaringly obvious fact that his magic touch has just about totally dissipated, for he has become so forlorn in his contempt of accepted societal expectations of film and in his need to further push his musings that the cinema is dead, that he is stuck within himself.
In JLG/JLG, we get many, MANY quotes from philosophers and other high-thinkers, put to what use? Beats me. Juxtaposed with shots of rolling hills, ocean waves crashing onto rocky shores, Godard toying around with rolls of film, writing on large pads of paper, and then playing tennis, it all ads up to a nice variety of static images. Pedantic in tone and crusty in narration, the film nevertheless abruptly dispenses one though provoking moment when Godard explains his take on metaphysics via two interlocking triangles that form a 6-pointed star.
Ultimately, I left the film with just one clear idea, albeit likely not one that Godard had intended - it is evident that for Godard, life does not imitate art; as, unlike his best films, he is going out with a whimper instead of a bang. Final Grade: D
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