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Wednesday, November 2 

France, Switzerland, West Germany, Austria, 1980
Directed by Jean-Luc Godard
Written by Anne-Marie Miéville, Jean-Claude Carrière
Starring Isabelle Huppert, Jacques Dutronc, Nathalie Baye
Approx. 87 min. 35mm.

"Marguerite Duras is heard, but not seen: people hear split seconds of music no one else can hear in public, women are slapped, men get their hair pulled; the most disparate activities are interrupted for vital phone calls; Jacques Dutronc’s Paul Godard (!) smokes big cigars, exchanges notes about parental abuse with his pre-pubescent daughter’s soccer coach, and battles with ex-lover Natalie Baye; who constantly bicycles around town, edits videotapes, tries to unload the apartment she’d shared with Dutronc, and bonds with prostitute Isabelle Huppert; who herself had spent the night with Paul, counseled an aspirant to “being on the game,” and constantly thinks (in a voice-over quoting Charles Bukowski) on other things as she responds in a lackadaisical “why not?” manner to the absurdly bizarre demands of her clients, notably a four-person roundelay that Rube Goldberg in his most lecherous mood could hardly have invented…an outrageous metaphor for the mating of sex and capitalism: and it’s funny as hell besides.” – Richard Corliss, TIME

Godard’s return to mainstream (for him) filmmaking, his self-described ‘second first film’ with technical innovation, freeze frames and slo mo within continuous uncut shots – and the most startling of arbitrary conclusions.


“No Godard since PIERROT LE FOU has excited me as much… His zest for cinema is undiminished. He has captured the subtle reality of what it feels like to be a thinking, feeling being in these ridiculously convulsive times. The total effect is intoxicating… Godard makes his ‘instant replays’ seem as apt and prophetic for the 80s as his jump-cuts proved to be in BREATHLESS in the 60s.”
– Andrew Sarris

“Has all the familiar attributes of a vintage Godard film – the exquisite compositional skill, the inventiveness and impatience, the sardonic wit, the frivolity and glancing pathos… As always, he disrupts standard film grammar and standard narrative order. Themes are introduced in an offhand manner, the story proceeds intermittently…But then he winds together his disparate strands, develops his themes ever more boldly and explicitly, and sends the movie hurtling toward its conclusion.”
– David Denby

“Should be seen by everyone interested in movies or in life without gestation or delay.”
– Jonathan Rosenbaum

Film Forum