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Jean-Luc Godard: Expect Everything from Cinema

Sunday, March 9, 2014
5:30 p.m. Pierrot le fou
Jean-Luc Godard (France, 1965)

“I wanted to do a kind of You Only Live Once, a story of the last romantic couple alive,” Godard said. Certainly, Ferdinand (Jean-Paul Belmondo) and Marianne (Anna Karina) are Godard’s last romantic couple, and maybe even his first: their adventure in eros and danger on the Riviera fulfills the dream escape of the lovers in Breathless, Band of Outsiders, and Alphaville. Godard reverses the Breathless story with Belmondo playing the fool implicated in the gangster world of Marianne (last name: Renoir), with whom he escapes a stupid bourgeois existence and reinvents love. The pathos of modern living, powerfully expressed through Godard’s experimental, philosophical exposition, includes ennui, accident, and absurdity among the forces destructive to love. Curious that the film described as “Godard's most freewheeling film” should involve a murder-suicide. Shot by Raoul Coutard in ’Scope and brilliant primary colors, Pierrot le fou is ravishing, and very moving.



—Judy Bloch


• Written by Godard. Photographed by Raoul Coutard. With Jean-Paul Belmondo, Anna Karina, Dirk Sanders, Samuel Fuller. (110 mins, In French with English subtitles, Color, ’Scope, 35mm, From Rialto Pictures)