Music by Gérard Hugé and Claude Channes
Lyrics by Gérard Guégan
Performed by Claudes Channes See more »
blame it on my youth
When Godard's LA CHINOISE was initially released, many commented on the fact that his latest movie might be called the further adventures of the children of Marx and Coca-Cola (the designation found in MASCULINE FEMININE). MASCULINE FEMININE had been in black-and-white, and was set in Paris in the winter of 1965-66; LA CHINOISE was in color (amazingly bright, Pop Art primary colors, mostly) and was set in the summer of 1967. Filming was so fast that Godard had the film ready for the Venice Film Festival in September of 1967 (where it won the Special Jury Award).
Just as MASCULINE FEMININE concerned a group of five friends (two boys, three girls), so LA CHINOISE has a group of five friends as its focus (two girls, three boys). The political discussions which had formed one strand in MASCULINE FEMININE now take over, and the film is about the political discourse which became so much a part of the radical Left in the period of the late 1960s and early 1970s. Yet though the film may seem didactic, it is also very tender in its regard for the protagonists. As with MASCULINE FEMININE, the film is filled with close-ups which show Anne Wiazemsky, Jean-Pierre Leaud, Juliet Berto and the others at their most open and vulnerable, for all the political posturings.
Again, as with MASCULINE FEMININE, LA CHINOISE is one of those movies that seemed to sum up the times for many of us who saw the film on its initial release: it just seemed to capture our lives with an immediacy and a relevancy that was startling. No filmmaker before or since has seemed to be able to be so contemporary. Now that period is part of the past, and the immediacy has been replaced by nostalgia, yet there remains a vitality that has kept this movie fresh.
Plus that "Mao, Mao" pop song is impossible to forget once you've heard it.
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