Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Bonnie and Clyde

This film came out in 1967 and was directed by Arthur Penn. It stars Warren Beatty, Faye Dunaway and Gene Hackman.

I had seen this movie before the viewing today in class. However, I would never have realized its French New wave roots if not for today. It was interesting to learn that they had wanted Truffault to direct the film. It was also interesting what affect Warren Beatty had on the film. That this was one of the first times a big star was a producer, and that he helped get the movie a second showing.

It was very interesting how they discussed sex, and impotence. It was neat how a few years earlier, none of that would have been allowed in a film. The idea of a gun being a fallic symbol is nothing new, yet one can really notice it in this film. When Clyde first shows Bonnie his gun, she gets turned on. After he robs the store and the drive away, Bonnie is filled with sexual energy and tries to seduce him. This is the first time we see that Clyde is not interested in sex like many men.

Also interesting is the thought that Beatty was able to see past all of this and decide to gamble on this role. For someone who was an famous bachelor and used his sex appeal to his advantage, playing an impotent theif could have done him more harm than good.

A woman in class said, that every time she sees this film it is like seeing it for the first time. I have to agree. I have seen this film before, but watching it through new, open eyes was an exciting and memorable way to end the semester.

Thursday, December 4, 2008

The Story of Adele H.

This film was made by Francis Truffaut. It came out in 1975.

The story takes place in Halifax, in the year 1863. A woman comes to look for a man she is in love with. the man she is in love with does not love her back, and he made that very clear to her. However, she does not seem to understand. Adele becomes obsessed with him and begins to stalk him.

Poor Adele, seems to be very take advantage of in the beginning. The Let. Proposes marriage, but does not really mean it. Adele however, believes that he does. When he is shipped to someplace else, she goes after him, believing his propsal to be real, and hopes to find him and have their marriage take place.

When Adele throws herself in the Let. path and is tosses aside, her infatuation and slight obsession turns into madness.

This film is full of love, passion and even self-destruction. I enjoyed this film, but cannot help but feel it makes women look a little bad, as if we all could easily become that obsessed and stalk the objects of our desire.

Pierrot Le Fou

This film was by Jean- Luc Goddard. It came out in 1965.

The main character is Pierrot, who becomes bored with his life. He decides to travel. He travels from Paris to the Mediteranian Sea with a woman who is being chased by hit-men from Algeria.

What really caught my attention in this film was the way Goddard played with narration. At times Pierro and Marianne would talk about what their characters were doing or would do. (definetly a new idea for film!)

The affair these two have, seems to be going well, until a dead body is found at Marianne's apartment.

Both the charachter seem to get bored very easily. Their boredom causes the affair in the first place, and in the end causes Marianne to leave.

Anna's charachter seems to be about right, as compared to all the other characters we have seen her play. Perhaps this was Goddard's way of saying they had both become bored in their relationship.

I enjoyed this film, as it had drama and a love story. It is truly interesting to watch Goddard and Anna's relationship develope and fail on screen.

Monday, November 24, 2008

Jules and Jim

This film was by Francois Truffaut and came out in 1962.

This film starts out and seems to be a tricky love triangle. Both Jules and Jim fall in love with the same woman, Catherine. Catherine loves and marries Jules. Later in life they meet up again and Catherine starts to love Jim. We see that all these people love each other, and yet this love does not seem to affect their friendship. Confusing right...

We see once again the stereotyping of women. Usually we see Goddard as very sexist, but this time we are seeing a woman through Truffaut's eyes and he seems to be very sexist also.

Catherine seems to be very unhappy. After her and Jules have moved to the country with their daughter, she begins to have affairs. Jules tolerates it because he does not think that he can live without her. When Jim comes to visit she begins to have an affair with him.

In my opinion, this may be one of the worst portrayals of a woman in all the films we have so far seen. Catherine is always looking for the grass to be greener, and cant seem to find happiness with just one man. In today's day and age if a woman was that loose after marriage she would be called a slut.

Funny thing is, this was one of the only films I had ever heard of before this class. I had heard it referenced in a TV show or a different movie. I was very excited to see this film. While it was not necessarily the best moral message it was an enjoyable film.


This film is by Jean-Luc Goddard and came out in 1963.

It is about an unsuccessful man hired to write a screen play for a famous director. The characters seem very fake to me and therefore it was hard to relate easily to them.

What is very interesting about this film is that it is a film about the making of a film. (we have seen the idea of this several times in other french new wave films). The Hollywood producers in this film are not nicely portrayed. The beginning credits are announced by a voice over which differs from the way that most films start. However, we have seen some French new wave directors play with similar ideas in the openings of films.

Again not one of my favorites, but different in many ways. It seems to be a more classical film and I am sure that many may have enjoyed this more than I did.

Vivre sa vie

This film was by Jean-Luc Goddard and came out in 1962. Goddard could be considered to be obsessed with prostitutes. However, as we discussed in class, he views prostitutes as working class people, who are working to get the job done. The film centers around the life of a prostitute.

I love the voice over that explains the rules of prostitution. We see all aspects of this prostitutes life. We know why she became a prostitute and even see her interacting with many other prostitutes.

Goddard again plays with the camera. We dont even see Anna's face until after 10 minutes into the film. This helps to distance us from her in the beginning of the film. The film is completed in only 12 scenes.

This film was very interesting but terribly depressing. Not one of my favorites.

My Night at Maud's

This film is by Eric Rohmer and came out in 1969. It is a love story, but different that the usual love story. When Jean-Louis sees Maud in a church he decides immediately that she will become his wife.

This film has quite a bit of comedy, the usual and unusual love story stuff and even religion in it. This film focuses mainly on religion and how religion affects the characters decisions.

The film is very dialogue based, yet it still seems to move quickly. It doesn't leave too much time to question what will come next.

This film was easily relatable. We see the themes of lust, love, and religion all being intertwined.

Maud in this film was portrayed as a strong woman which is a nice change from how most women seem to be portrayed in all the french new wave films. Usually they are portrayed as stupid or manipulative beings only here for men's pleasure. However Maud is strong and clearly an equal with the male characters.

I enjoyed this film, not very often can religion be intertwined so easily in a film that can still be enjoyable to the masses.