Le vent d’est begins with fleeting bits of business from the movie-within-the-movie, a Western, being shot by a group of would-be Third World moviemakers. Almost immediately it turns into a soundtrack debate of Godardian dialectics, set against images that could be from some kind of crazy Western. This evolves into auto-critique (“What does it mean to ask the question: ‘Where are we now?’ for a militant moviemaker?”) that is followed by a coda, which is nothing less than some pretty pictures of a school girl planting bombs in an open-air market. –Vincent Canby
The Dziga Vertov Group (French: Groupe Dziga Vertov) was formed in 1968 by politically active filmmakers including Jean-Luc Godard and Jean-Pierre Gorin. Their films are defined primarily for Brechtian forms, Marxist ideology, and a lack of personal authorship. The group, named after 1920s-‘30s Soviet filmmaker Dziga Vertov, was dissolved soon after the completion of 1972’s Letter to Jane.
They are generally credited with having made nine films: read more
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
One of the most intelligent and original minds in cinema today, Jean-Pierre Gorin has carved a unique and important niche in the tradition of documentary film. His ‘journey’ has taken him from philosophy and journalism through to the founding of the radical Dziga Vertov Group with Jean-Luc Godard in 1968. Born in Paris in 1943, Gorin was an ardent cinéphile since his youth.
He received his baccalaureate in Philosophy in 1960, subsequently enrolling at the Sorbonne. Here he took part in the seminars of Louis Althusser, Jacques Lacan, and Michel Foucault. In addition, from 1965 to 1968, Gorin was an editor at Le Monde newspaper, helping create its weekly literary supplement, Le Monde des livres. He wrote dozens of articles, contributing to the political and esthetic debates that would lead eventually to the upheaval of May 1968 and to his partnering with Godard as co-director on some of the most radical and influential political films of that period.
Long fascinated by the… read more