Archive for June 7th, 2013

passion 2


by Allan Fish

continuing the Godard mini-series

(France 1982 88m) DVD1/2

Looking for real light

p  Catherine Lapoujade, Armand Babault, Martine Marignac  d  Jean-Luc Godard  w  Jean-Luc Godard, Jean-Claude Carrière  ph  Raoul Coutard  ed  Jean-Luc Godard  art  Jean Bauer, Serge Marzoff  cos  Christian Gasc, Rosalie Varda

Isabelle Huppert (Isabelle), Jerzy Radziwilowicz (Jerzy), Michel Piccoli (Michel), Hanna Schygulla (Hanna), László Szabó (Lászlo), Patrick Bonnel (Patrick), Sophie Luchachevski (Sophie, script-girl), Myriem Roussel (Myriem), Magali Campos (Magali),

In his introduction to Godard’s film on the UK DVD, Colin MacCabe talks of how Passion grew out of a time in Godard’s life when he was given to the belief that it was “no longer the time for great masterpieces, but a time when everything will become a masterpiece.”  It’s a statement Andy Warhol might once have agreed with, the effective irrelevance of story, films where what happened on screen was sufficient for art.  So in Passion, the real, the staged and the merely observed merge and separate on impulse.

How to begin to describe it; first take the notion of a film being made within the film, directed by Polish director Jerzy and a film whose mission statement seems to be to capture the light effects of various western painted masterpieces.  Rubens and Delacroix are mentioned, while Rembrandt’s ‘The Night Watch’ and Ingres’ Valpinçon Bather feature heavily.  Around them are spun three other central characters, or ciphers as may be more accurate.  Michel is a hotelier who houses the crew during the shoot.  Hanna is his wife, who loves director Jerzy and who Jerzy wants to be in his Rubens portion of the film.  Isabelle works in a nearly adjacent factory – also owned by Michel – and tries to start a strike seemingly mirroring the events of the Solidarity movement in Poland. (more…)

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