Thursday, September 07, 2006

More Top Ten

Wow, this is already getting tough. I'm afraid this top ten might turn into a top 15 or so.

Breathless (A bout de souffle)
, 1960, Written by Francois Truffaut and Jean-Luc Godard; Directed by Jean-Luc Godard.

Of course, there's plenty to say about this film in terms of cinema history and it's influence on the New American Cinema. But for me, there's no movie that feels more alive than Breathless. The energy of the actors, the camera work, the editing, and the city itself seems unmatched even in today's world of fast cut frenetic films. Breathless is simply more vital. No other movie makes me wish I was in Paris (or any other city) more than Breathless. You can feel the pulse of the city in every frame, especially in the exteriors. The ambiguity of Michel (Jean-Paul Belmondo) and Patricia (Jean Seberg) adds a wonderful layer of complexity. Patricia's ambivalence towards Michel and her motives for being with him create the portrait of a character simultaneously deep and quite shallow. And when Patricia finally betrays him, Michel's refusal to run seems incredibly moving and adult, and at the same time childishly petulant.


At 11:12 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

You know I really enjoyed this film as well. I actually really like the French new wave cinema. This summer I picked up the criterion collection of The 400 Blows to add to my collection. It really was random chance that I found it at work.


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