Just after the fall of the Berlin Wall, Lemmy Caution roams around the city aimlessly. The film is part narrative and part documentary, an essay picture about German history and politics. —Wikipedia
The lynchpin of the French New Wave, Jean-Luc Godard was arguably the most influential filmmaker of the postwar era. Beginning with his groundbreaking 1959 feature debut A Bout de Souffle, Godard revolutionized the motion picture form, freeing the medium from the shackles of its long-accepted cinematic language by rewriting the rules of narrative, continuity, sound, and camera work. Later in his career, he also challenged the common means of feature production, distribution, and exhibition, all in an effort to subvert the conventions of the Hollywood formula to create a new kind of film.
Godard was born in Paris on December 3, 1930, the second of four children. After receiving his primary education in Nyon, Switzerland – during World War II, he became a naturalized Swiss citizen – he studied ethnology at the Sorbonne, but spent the vast majority of his days at the Cine-Club du Quartier Latin, where he first met fellow film fanatics Francois Truffaut and Jacques Rivette. In May… read more
Germany in winter; a car parked over the sign “Karl-Marx-Straße,” no flowers to be seen – and it’s unlikely they’ll reappear. The roads are many, but lead nowhere, or rather, lead to reflection of past achievements and defeats: a monument for Beethoven, the canal where Rosa Luxemburg’s body was flung. Theodor Adorno analyzed giant monsters in cinema as representation of an oppressive state acting over vulnerable individuals; but a King Kong is no longer necessary, as there are enough colossal machines to take this role… More and more, society reminds the contradictions within Pierpont Mauler from “Saint Joan of the Stockyards” (Two souls abide / Within thy breast!); on the one hand, man has a necessity of socialization, but on the other, capitalism plunges us to individuality. “Old father Brecht” also commented on the role of exception in society; Anton Webern being murdered by a drunken American soldier well symbolizes the relationship between “the exception and the rule”. But it’s for us, lovers of the former, to keep it alive in all its forms: written (Goethe, Heine); composed (Bach, Mozart); painted (Friedrich, Dix); filmed (Lang, Fassbinder… Godard).
Lemmy Caution, once the ghost in the machine, now the knight-errant, lost in a land of dragons. No longer the hardboiled detective of post-war crime serials, but a genuine surrogate for JLG; the mournful, world-weary old soldier in his winter coat and hat, wandering a desolate countryside; moving through recollections, histories and past events like one of The Hunters from Angelopoulos's great film. Lamenting, in poetic verse, the great folly of the twentieth-century.
A look at the many-splendored posters for Godard’s Alphaville and the career of Lemmy Caution.