Cannes Movie Review: Jean

2020-02-19 15:46:36    阅读:583998

If youve ever wondered what Jean-Luc Godards Pinterest board would look like, The Image Book, playing in competition here in Cannes, will give you some idea. At this point, it feels wrong to call the 87-year-old Swiss-born Godard, perhaps the crankiest of all the fathers of the New Wave, a living legend. Hes really more of a folk myth. Cantankerous and reclusive, Godard speakswhen he makes any kind of public pronouncement at allin a kind of growly semaphore. In 2014, when his marvelous 3D collage Goodbye to Language playe

d the festival, he declined to appear in person to present the film, instead sending a cryptic yet compelling nearly nine-minute video letter of explanation (sort of) to then-outgoing festival president Gilles Jacob and festival director Thierry Fremaux. The video, which Jacob and Fremaux posted online, includes clips and sound bites from his own films, including Burgess Meredith, in the 1987 King Lear, telling Molly Ringwald, I dont have my heart in my mouth. Then, in a video image, Godard himself appears, echoing those words: I dont have my heart in my mouth anymore either. Related Stories 


'The Assistant' Is a Movie for the #MeToo Era–But It Also Captures the Insults of Workplace Exploitation   

  Entertainment 'The Gentlemen' Is Not Nearly as Classy as Advertised  The Image Book suggests thats true, and perhaps whatever heart Godard has is in his eyes. (This time around, though, Godard did show up for his Cannes press conference, electronically, at least: He answered journalists questions in absentia, via FaceTime on an iPhone held aloft in the press room.) Disjointed and direct, exhilarating and soporific, cerebral and squi本港六台王中王 rrelly: The Image Book is lots of contradictory things at

once. And if its hard to understand exactly what Godard is trying to say in this brief scrapbook scamperit clocks in at one hour, 25 minutesjust watching it is a strange, melancholy pleasure, and an open window into the world of things that worry its creator. The Image Book

is an assemblage of film clips, news footage and random, unidentifiable stuff, with mysterious title cards inserted seemingly at randomone reading 1. REMAKES appears three times, or is it four? Here and there Godards voice itself is heard, craggy as the branches of an ancient tree, making doomy, mournful pronouncements. There is footage of terrorist atrocities that feels both jolting and yet also somehow safely remote: These are just things on a screen, not things happening before our eyes. And yet Godard may be asking us, and himself, if theres any difference. Snippets of sound, words and music work mostly at odds with the images, not in concert with them. The effect is something like watching little kids unsuccessfully trying to work two jump-ropes at once, resulting in wriggly, out-of-sync parabolas. Thats the intent: Godard wants to disorient in order to reorient, as hes done for pretty much his whole career. Hes filled The Image Book with pictures that speak to him, or maybe just with pictures through which hed like to speak, many of them culled from movies: Vertigo, Young Mr. Lincoln, Jean Cocteaus Beauty and the Beast, the Weimar classic People on Sunday. Many of these images are digitally altered, some of them degraded so they resemble Xeroxes of Xeroxes of Xeroxesperhaps Godards way of explaining that our memories process images differently from the way our eyes do.  Get The Brief. Sign up to receive the top stories you need to know right now. Thank you! For your security, we've sent a confirmation email to the address you entered. Click the link to confirm your subscription and begin receiving our newsletters. If you don't get the confirmation within 10 minutes, please check your spam folder. Godard devotes a large chunk of the film to asserting how greatly the Arab world is misunderstood. But if the gist is clear, its still hard to know exactly what hes saying. Godard is often classified as a political filmmaker, and his politics make their way into his films, of course. But hes not a clear political thinker; his ideas are always blurry and muddled, if defiant, and thats certainly the case here. Yet its obvious that The Image Book is an expression of despair. Godard the cracked genius, old but still vital, and still very, very strange, has gone rummaging around in the jumble of his minds basement, and this is what he has come up with. This isnt a warm filmits like a Chris Marker documentary-essay without soul. But weve always known that Godard is (mostly) not a warm filmmaker. With The Image Book, hes teasing us, hes condescending to us, hes expressing his anger at how little we seem to care

. This is what he thinks of us, though in return, we dont know what to think of him. That, it seems, is exactly the way he wants it. Contact us at