One of cinema’s greatest directors, Jean-Luc Godard has consistently challenged and changed the medium of film as both a film critic and director. After over 100 films produced, he remains electrifying and enigmatic. As he transitioned from young cinephile to a leading critic at the Cahiers-du-Cinema to master of the French New Wave, Godard has honed his skills and changed the course of film. Following his Grand Jury prize at the 2014 Cannes Film Festival for his latest film, GOODBYE TO LANGUAGE 3D, the Cosford Classics series is revisiting the director’s most popular period by screening three of Godard’s 1960s films. The GODARD À GO-GO series is further united by the powerful presence of Godard’s partner, muse, and former wife Anna Karina and will screen their collaborative efforts in VIVRE SA VIE, PIERROT LE FOU, and BAND OF OUTSIDERS, for a special 50th anniversary presentation. The series is projected from 35mm celluloid, providing the same experience the young Godard had watching films at the Cinematheque Francaise before he embarked on his influential career as a filmmaker. Films will include introductions as well as special short features.
VIVRE SA VIE
Sunday June 22 – 5:30PM
VIVRE SA VIE was a turning point for Jean-Luc Godard and remains one of his most dynamic films, combining brilliant visual design with a tragic character study. The lovely Anna Karina, Godard’s greatest muse, plays Nana, a young Parisian who aspires to be an actress but instead ends up a prostitute, her downward spiral depicted in a series of discrete tableaux of daydreams and dances. Featuring some of Karina and Godard’s most iconic moments—from her movie theater vigil with THE PASSION OF JOAN OF ARC to her seductive pool-hall strut—VIVRE SA VIE is a landmark of the French New Wave that still surprises at every turn. [COSFORD CLASSIC XVIII]
PIERROT LE FOU
Sunday July 20 – 5:30PM
Dissatisfied in marriage and life, Ferdinand (Jean-Paul Belmondo) takes to the road with the babysitter, his ex-lover Marianne Renoir (Anna Karina), and leaves the bourgeoisie behind. Yet this is no normal road trip: genius auteur Jean-Luc Godard’s tenth feature in six years is a stylish mash-up of consumerist satire, politics, and comic-book aesthetics, as well as a violent, zigzag tale of, as Godard called them, “the last romantic couple.” With blissful color imagery by cinematographer Raoul Coutard and Belmondo and Karina at their most animated, PIERROT LE FOU is one of the high points of the French New Wave, and was Godard’s last frolic before he moved ever further into radical cinema. [COSFORD CLASSIC XIX]
BANDE A PART
Sunday August 24 – 5:30PM
Four years after BREATHLESS, Jean-Luc Godard reimagined the gangster film even more radically with BAND OF OUTSIDERS (BANDE A PART). In it, two restless young men (Sami Frey and Claude Brasseur) enlist the object of both of their fancies (Anna Karina) to help them commit a robbery—in her own home. This audacious and wildly entertaining French New Wave gem is at once sentimental and insouciant, effervescently romantic and melancholy, and it features some of Godard’s most memorable set pieces, including the headlong race through the Louvre and the unshakably cool Madison dance sequence. [COSFORD CLASSIC XX]
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