Here we find Godard at the very end of his New Wave period, just before he falls off the precipice into the Marxist phase of his career, when his movies became more political and, frankly, quite tedious.
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There are car crashes, trips back in time and, yes, murder, but Godard the genius can still be felt behind the camera. This film deserves to be seen on its own merits, and also as a bookend to one of the greatest directorial periods in a great artistic career. The closeness of girl friendships are oft-remarked on, and they are beautifully articulated in this impressionistic French film.
They shoplift their bodycon dresses and have street scraps with other girl gangs, but are still slut-shamed and dominated by the local boys. Celine Sciamma lenses her unknown actors with gorgeously diffused blue filters, and captures the way they dance, revel in their physical intimacy, and fiercely defend one another. Amour Director: Michael Haneke.
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Amour opens jarringly, as the police break down the door to a well-heeled Parisian apartment. They follow a sickening odor to the decomposing body of an elderly woman peacefully lying in bed in her Sunday best. From here, the film flashes back: Georges Jean-Louis Trintignant and Anne Emmanuelle Riva , former musicians and teachers, have settled into a comfortable retirement in their eighties, when Anne suffers a stroke.
Eventually, she undergoes an unsuccessful surgery and proceeds to become further debilitated.
But she seems to be more of a burden than a comfort to her parents. Georges tends to Anne dutifully and without resentment as her condition worsens. It is both touching and heartbreaking to watch him care for her as she reverts to an infant-like state, and, after an operation, Anne makes it clear that she does not want to go back to the hospital under any condition.
Meanwhile, it becomes increasingly evident that she does not wish to continue to live in her current state. Georges cannot acknowledge her wishes, until finally he can, and does—a revelation that has life-altering consequences. Amour simultaneously illuminates the horrors and beauty of aging. Who would not wish to live until their twilight years like Georges and Anne, comfortably enjoying their last decade of life? Austrian filmmaker and sometime provocateur Michael Haneke lets it play out gently and without exploitation: Amour leaves the viewer feeling unsettled, but also pondering what it means to truly love and care for someone.
Shoot the Piano Player keeps its tongue firmly in cheek as Truffaut oscillates between absurd slapstick and heartbreak. Yet, as the final collaboration between two of the most formidable surrealist artists of the early 20th century, its importance and influence is, however broad, indisputable. Huppert is marvelous in the role: Between this performance and the one in the far spikier Elle in the same year, she continues to make one compelling case after another for ranking as one of the best actresses of her generation, blending vulnerability and defiance in inspiring ways.
Pickpocket Director: Robert Bresson. That titular pickpocket, Michel intentionally played with no emotion by first time actor Martin LaSalle , elevates his love of theft above any of his personal relationships, turning it into an almost euphoric act despite his stone-faced exterior, and one that ultimately leaves him alone.
Abel Jean-Paul Roussillon and Junon Catherine Deneuve have three grown children, two of whom have long been estranged. Now, as Junon needs a dangerous transfusion to survive cancer, everyone convenes in the family home to celebrate Christmas together. Though the film deals with many exceptionally depressing topics mental illness, hatred, life-threatening disease, lost love, betrayal director Arnaud Desplechin never veers into maudlin territory. Family members might hate each other, but something like love is underneath it all.
On top of his story about a hilariously contentious family reunion, Desplechin has heaped cinema itself, spinning up a maelstrom of irises and dissolves, Vertigo s and Tenenbaums , Minguses and Herrmanns, to end up with something that feels almost, maybe, strangely, ever so slightly touching.
The very fact of its existence seems to contribute to its rather magical quality. A historical piece set in the s Paris theater world, it centers on an enigmatic performer named Garence Arletty and four men who are drawn to her, each for slightly different reasons. Les Enfants du Paradis is a tale of grand passion between men and women, between actors and audiences and between actors and the stages they inhabit—epic, lavish, tragic, enchanting, a film with enormous style.
Menilmontant Director: Dimitri Kirsanoff. Watching Menilmontant is a deeply felt experience. In only his second film, impressionist filmmaker Dimitri Kirsanoff takes the dreamlike qualities of silent cinema to their natural conclusion, letting the story float by alongside haunting imagery without any intertitles directing how one should interpret this bold work.
His thief played with debonair charm by Jean Gabin has the air of a Robin Hood about him, as he befriends a down-on-his-luck aristocrat the great Louis Jouet , who later serves as a wry observer to the self-delusion practiced by denizens of the almost cozy-looking flophouse. Where Kurosawa undercuts a moment of happiness with shocking cynicism, Renoir tempers his darkest moment with romantic optimism. It speaks volumes about the two artists and makes for fascinating viewing.
The grotesque and the flat-out ridiculous collide again and again throughout the virtually plotless The Discreet Charm of the Bourgeoisie , which uses the cynical juxtaposition of opulent and horrific images to give us a classic surrealist commentary on social charades. Raw Director: Julia Ducournou. He carves her tiny Parisian apartment into sections: the sliver of a kitchen, the front door that leads to chaos, the corner for video games and the table that sits front-and-center, anchoring the patient, slowly panning camera.
Everyone, it seems, has something devastating to hide, not the least of whom is Dr. Germain Pierre Fresnay , a man known for his lusty dalliances, which feels ironic given that he also conducts illegal abortions in the area. As the letters pile up and one cancer patient Roger Blin commits suicide due to a letter from the Raven informing him that his cancer is terminal , the town grows increasingly desperate to find the culprit, sparking a witch hunt that catches Dr.
Germain in the midst of his many lies. While his plot is the stuff of soap opera pulp, Clouzot masterfully mounts paranoia on top of tension on top of existential guilt, winding his players so tightly that when the film inevitably erupts into violence, the viewer is left with nothing but a bleak sense that nobody got what they deserved—and that maybe no one ever really gets what we deserve anyway. Perhaps Francois Truffaut should have released The Last Metro using a pseudonym—maybe then it would be regarded as a minor masterpiece.
Monsieur Hire Director: Patrice Leconte. Whether you get caught up in the whodunnit, the off-kilter romance or just the fascinating portrait of the title character, Monsieur Hire will leave a lasting impression. Assembled from interviews with officers, sympathizers, resistance fighters and bystanders—perspectives originating from every angle— The Sorrow and the Pity reveals many excruciating truths about France during the occupation, but none more plangent than the idea that war has no sides, no good guys, no winners.
The Kid with a Bike is no exception.
Just a decade on from the first talkie, Renoir made what today appears a strikingly modern film, replete with naturalistic performances and dialogue, smooth camera movements and, most importantly, complex character dynamics. Every character in the film, through desperate circumstance, becomes allied with another from a walk of life they otherwise would never traverse. Most interesting is the relationship between the aristocratic de Boeldieu Pierre Fresnay and von Rauffenstein Erich von Stroheim : They are French and German, prisoner and warden, but, as if two rare creatures forced to occupy the same cage, a friendship forms through mutual recognition that they may be among the last of their kind.
The Grand Illusion kills with kindness—it fulfills its duty as an anti-war flick not by showing battlefield horrors, but simply by asking: How can we be enemies when we have so much in common? Rouge Director: Krzysztof Kieslowski. Simultaneously, we follow the story of a young law student Jean-Pierre Lorit who comes to believe his girlfriend is cheating on him.
Elle Director: Paul Verhoeven. La Haine Director: Mathieu Kassovitz. Rififi Director: Jules Dassin. Reared in noir and similar wise-guy-inhabiting genres, Dassin seemed finally free with Rififi , a tightly wound testament to the weird and alluring dreamscape of criminal enterprise.
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Holy Motors Director: Leos Carax. Who knew it would be Kylie Minogue to remind us exactly why we go to the movies at all? Denis Lavant plays an actor or does he? Carax and Denis stuff nearly every genre into their entrancing film while keeping it cohesive cohesive, all the while gamely tearing down the walls between film and audience, suggesting that who we are is only a matter of what we see. Band of Outsiders features the ephemeral Anna Karina as one of a trio of novice outlaws a common theme with Godard which makes plans to rob a villa outside Paris, resulting in a sepia-toned, melancholic drama punctuated by bouts of comedy.
As in the seminal Breathless , Godard shows remarkable deftness in juggling the casually absurd aspects of his film with dead-serious social commentary, capturing it all in the framework of an compelling story with severe stakes for its protagonists. Aside: Has any director been better at showing the humanity of criminals? This is an almost impossible balance to strike, as Godard himself proved in his Marxist period to follow, but here it all meshes effortlessly in what stands as an unlikely stalwart of the French New Wave.
Beauty and the Beast Director: Jean Cocteau. The themes explored here are traditional fairy tale tropes: innocence and greed, the transformative power of love, the fear of the unknown, magic. Cocteau was a celebrated poet as well as a filmmaker, and this is a strong example of how the two crafts inform one another, in the way it harnesses imagery to create metaphorical connections.
Weird and powerful filmmaking. Breathless Director: Jean-Luc Godard. When he murders a cop, the film turns from a light Parisian affair to a tense love story, and the question that hangs in the balance is whether Patricia will betray her criminal beau. The man may have been one of the great comic talents of his day, but years after his death we can pretty safely say he was something of a seer as well. Beau Travail Director: Claire Denis.
As Chief Adjutant Galoup remembering his time in Djibouti, he snarls, lips twisting into a spiral staircase leading into his fractured psyche. With blasting critiques of colonialism and masculinity, Denis plunges us into the rhythm of the night, however lonely it ultimately is. One can understand the squeamishness: Man Bites Dog unflinchingly portrays serial murder in its graphic banality, victims ranging from children to the elderly to a gang-raped woman whose corpse is later photographed with her entrails spilling all over the table on which she was violated, the perpetrators lying in drunken post-revelry, heaped on the floor.
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Filmed as a mockumentary, Man Bites Dog goes to distressing lengths to detail the exigencies of murder as basely as possible, incorporating the reluctance of the crew filming such horrors to offer the audience a reflection of the ways one feels watching. But Man Bites Dog is more about the ways in which we consume a movie like Man Bites Dog , concerned less about the flagrant killing it indulges for laughs than it is the laughs themselves, implying that the real blame for such well-known horror falls at our feet, in which each day we take big, basic steps to normalize the violence and hate that constantly surrounds us.
Despite being strangers albeit identical ones , both share a bond that the Polish director refuses both to explain or mitigate. Messing with genre is more a means to an end for Claire Denis than it is a celebration of the Fulci phantasmagoria and giallo sensibility and European art house erotic thrillers she so clearly loves, and Trouble Every Day is her ultimately harvesting the miasma emanating from the ways in which she bends these kinds of movies to her will.
The film stinks of sex and death, rolls around in it, characters licking it dripping from the corners of the screen. It follows newlyweds Dr. Which must be the point: Human sexuality is an inscrutable thing, and monogamy strains against that inscrutability. Perhaps, Denis shrugs, we were never meant for one person; perhaps we were only meant to tear each other apart. In it, prepubescent boy Nicolas Max Brebant finds a corpse underwater, a starfish seemingly blooming from its bellybutton.
From there, Evolution eviscerates notions of motherhood, masculinity and the inexplicable gray area between, simultaneously evoking anxiety and awe as it presents one unshakeable, dreadful image after another. She is, literally, stuck in France. In the next scene, she transforms from a meek record-store clerk with suffocating debt and a child that she and the audience never sees, to a prostitute with a new set of problems.
After A Woman is a Woman , his previous kaleidoscopic musical with Karina, this is a more downbeat flick: moody, sparse, noir-ish. Where does a movie like Fantastic Planet come from? How does it even get made? Error rating book. Refresh and try again. Open Preview See a Problem? Details if other :. Thanks for telling us about the problem. Return to Book Page. Bruno Gazzotti. Et pourtant, ils n'ont encore rien vu! Get A Copy. Hardcover , 48 pages. More Details Other Editions 8. Friend Reviews.
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Lists with This Book. This book is not yet featured on Listopia. Community Reviews. Showing Rating details. More filters. Sort order. Jan 21, Nicolas Ronvel rated it liked it Shelves: not-mine. La fin du premier cycle, visiblement. Aug 25, Stephanie rated it really liked it Shelves: bd , do-not-own , french-livres , middle-grade , post-apocalyptic , horror. The animals still have such strange eyes… and what is that in the middle of the circle created by the red cairns? The truth of what happened to cause almost everyone to disappear is unsettling and has potentially psychologically breaking ramifications, and makes us really want to read the next book right away!
Why did this happen to THEM? Following the events in The Red Cairns , the fourth album of writer Fabien Vehlmann and artist Bruno Gazzotti's genuinely interesting series Alone , our five child protagonists — the rich Ivan, the technologically savvy Leila, the studious Camille, the slightly obnoxios and certainly youngest of the lot Terry, and the street smart and tough Dodzi — and additional friends, formerly of the Clan of the Shark, decide to investigate the Red Zone.
We also learn more about the mysterious couple Alexa Following the events in The Red Cairns , the fourth album of writer Fabien Vehlmann and artist Bruno Gazzotti's genuinely interesting series Alone , our five child protagonists — the rich Ivan, the technologically savvy Leila, the studious Camille, the slightly obnoxios and certainly youngest of the lot Terry, and the street smart and tough Dodzi — and additional friends, formerly of the Clan of the Shark, decide to investigate the Red Zone.
We also learn more about the mysterious couple Alexander and Selena. New revelation are given, but as so often only to give rise to new questions. Powell's Books. Uncle Hugo's. University of Washington University Bookstore. University of Wisconsin University Bookstore. Only registered users can write reviews. Please, log in or register. Buy Ebooks. All Books.
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