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 »
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 »
In a palace of Paris. Two detectives are investigating a two-year-old murder. Emile and Francoise Chenal are putting pressure on Jim Fox Warner, a boxing manager, who owes them a huge ... See full summary »
Godard's documentation of late 1960's western counter-culture, examining the Black Panthers, referring to works by LeRoi Jones and Eldridge Cleaver. Other notable subjects are the role of ... See full summary »
Commissioned by the heads of the 2000 Cannes Film Festival to make an opening-night short commemorating cinema as it enters its second full century, Godard instead offers up a 17-minute ... See full summary »
A famous French filmmaker is hired by a major Hollywood producer to make a documentary on the state of post-Cold War Russia. The filmmaker, though, subverts the project by stubbornly ... See full summary »
Droll and repetitive like a lackluster history textbook
Since the first episode of Jean-Luc Godard's Histoire(s) du Cinéma, I can assure you, I think I figured out what he was trying to go for. Godard seems to be trying to illustrate the experimentation people conducted with film throughout its history, while, simultaneously, making a film that is pretty experimental as well. It's about as meta as one can be, and while it's a novel concept that has some merit, four parts in and I'm almost ready to wave the white flag in defeat to Godard's constant defiling of convention and traditionalism.
Deadly Beauty, the "b" part of chapter two in this ongoing expedition of cinema, offers about the same amount of information as the previous three chapters, which amounts to very little in the long-run. Because Godard goes for a heavily impressionistic style for a documentary that should be constantly informing, there's little information that sticks, and even the beautiful, often poetic images of films and art only linger in ones mind for a brief time before dissipating into empty thoughts.
Godard has some interesting musings in this part, however, from illustrating the idea that cinema has often been about death and murder and how we rarely see miracles like a flower blooming or a newborn baby being born. This idea that cinema has been more concerned with death than life would be hugely interesting if we saw some sort of compilation of clips alluding to that, rather than practically accepting it as anecdotal thought, but unfortunately, the idea is abandoned almost as soon as it is brought up.
On top of that, we once again witness some seriously beautiful images captured under seriously droll and monotonous narration from Godard, which is the same old vagueness in thought and idea we've gotten before. Reviewing this series has almost been as much of a task as watching it because of the fact that there is little to discuss that hasn't been brought up before. Godard has found the style, and, regardless of what I or others think, he's sticking to him. I applaud him as much as I want to never watch another film by him again.
Directed by: Jean-Luc Godard.
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