Accumulation in Jacques Rivette’s La Belle Noiseuse (1991)

For a while after watching Jacques Rivette’s La Belle Noiseuse (The Beautiful Troublemaker, 1991), I repeatedly heard the sound of ink scratching from a nib onto rough paper and canvas. This action occurs throughout the almost four hour long film, to the point where the process of painting – from its earliest preparatory sketches to a devilish, unseen final canvas – feels almost conveyed in … Continue reading Accumulation in Jacques Rivette’s La Belle Noiseuse (1991)

Avant Godard! – Part 2, Musical Subversion (Bande à Part and Pierrot Le Fou)

Part 1. Ideas In Later Films By Godard. Godard would continue to subvert the role of record players in his work to similar but more extreme effects. It seems odd that the connecting factor to all the scenes mentioned is the presence of his, then wife, Anna Karina.  Godard is capable of presenting her dancing and singing with a relatively normal relationship between the visual … Continue reading Avant Godard! – Part 2, Musical Subversion (Bande à Part and Pierrot Le Fou)

Avant Godard! Musical Subversion In The Films Of Jean-Luc Godard. (Part 1)

Avant Godard! Musical Subversion And Fictional Interaction With Non-Diegetic Music In The Films Of Jean-Luc Godard. Introduction – French New Wave As Avant Garde. When discussing Avant Garde cinema, the most obvious choices of cinematic subject would no doubt be linked to the likes of Dali, Buñuel and Cocteau.  However, the gradual movement from Avant Garde to Art House cinema presents a more interesting case for Avant Garde … Continue reading Avant Godard! Musical Subversion In The Films Of Jean-Luc Godard. (Part 1)

Pierrot Le Fou – Jean-Luc Godard (1965)

Describing Jean-Luc Godard’s output in the 1960s as prolific would be an understatement.  From his 1960 debut feature film A Bout De Souffle, he produced a wealth of experimental, groundbreaking and kitsch films often highlighting political stances and reveling in absurd visual eccentricities.  One of the many highlights from this creative storm is his one of his many crime films; 1965’s Pierrot Le Fou.  Though crime was … Continue reading Pierrot Le Fou – Jean-Luc Godard (1965)

Shoot the Pianist – Francois Truffaut (1960)

At the heart of many films by François Truffaut, there is a flawed but humble and tragic male figure that often gets into trouble or worse, has his heart broken.  There’s no doubt that Truffaut, himself a gentle and misunderstood director, projects himself into his many flawed men of his films, whether it’s troubled youth Antoine Doinel from The 400 Blows or women addicted Bertrand Morane from The … Continue reading Shoot the Pianist – Francois Truffaut (1960)

Pickpocket – Robert Bresson (1959)

One of the more subtle directors to come from outside of the French New Wave pool, Robert Bresson is a director more concerned with issues and ideas than the visual experimentation that obsessed Godard or Truffaut.  His 1959 film, Pickpocket, also shies away from the overtly political side of Alan Resnais and instead adopts an approach of social comment, which instantly seems refreshing. Pickpocket follows the Crime and … Continue reading Pickpocket – Robert Bresson (1959)

Blood of a Poet and The Testament of Orpheus – Jean Cocteau

The idea of film as pure art is something that divides so many views on the medium that it is seen to be part of a genre when a film tries to discuss anything artistically of merit.  So with the idea of art film as a genre itself rather than a creative perception, what is left is something that is both perceived as often difficult … Continue reading Blood of a Poet and The Testament of Orpheus – Jean Cocteau

Jules Et Jim At 50 – François Truffaut

This year sees the 50th anniversary of one of France’s best loved and most influential films; Jules et Jim.  François Truffaut is the ultimate poster boy of the French New Wave movement that climaxed at the end of the fifties and it is in these early films of his such asJules et Jim where genius is ever present for all to see.  Based on a book by Henri-Pierre … Continue reading Jules Et Jim At 50 – François Truffaut

Last Year In Marienbad – Alain Resnais (1961)

Alan Resnais is perhaps one of quieter directors of the French New Wave movement.  His films are often delicate examinations of the emotional states and philosophical choices that take their time in delivering a story.  Though less known than both Godard and Truffaut, his work has a strong consistency that makes repeat viewings essential in gaining an insight into what exactly the film was about.  Last Year … Continue reading Last Year In Marienbad – Alain Resnais (1961)

Three Colours Trilogy – Krzysztof Kieslowski (1993)

One of the many highlights of the 90’s reassertion of realism; The Three Colours Trilogy, by director Krzysztof Kieslowski, can be seen as one of the high bench marks of film before the digital age.  It’s hard to imagine a successful set of mainstream films being so metaphorical and altogether emotionally deep getting so far in the world these days, which is why this box set … Continue reading Three Colours Trilogy – Krzysztof Kieslowski (1993)