A screenwriter hired by a pompous American, is torn between his own artistic expression and commercial success. His conflict parallels the disollution of his marriage as his wife becomes enamored with a rich playboy.
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This beautiful cinematic story mixes the end of art cinema with the end of a relationship - if the Gods did not create men, but men created the Gods, didn't we do the same with love? Each frame in Godard's ode to Bardot is a picture, is a painting, is a piece of art. A cinema school on how to show the end of subtle things. When Godard hears the world culture, he brings out his checkbook. When I hear it, I heart it.
Because the on-screen romance dissolves without any clear answers, Contempt stands as one of the truest testaments to the difficulty of maintaining relationships. The film score is outstanding, and the meta-conversation about the nature of filmmaking is fascinating. One could spend hours contemplating Godard's use of color, or the captivating subtleties of Brigitte Bardot. A classic through and through.
My second Godard. Not only is this the best film I've ever seen about film-making, but it's also the most truthful motion picture I've seen about marital breakdown. A visual feast and a brilliant tale of art vs commerce vs love.
contempt for cinema also? in the sequence when piccoli is torn by jealousy/fury/indecision, what are those talks about film to him? both art vs. life and art is life topics seem schizoid and artificial.
Comparable to an elegy on language/romance/classicism that persists in the bottomlessness of a cinema where storytelling is inseperable from the extinction of the essential historical characteristics of novelistic form, where the beautiful image is a syntagmatic event thresholded in a dialectical fracture, modern and post-modern engaging fetish/commodity with tragic resonance. The only Godard film I truly love.
Men and women are different. Underneath all of our complexity lies a primal emotion of jealousy, carelessness, anger, and fear of abandonment. People act out on these emotions because they can never be too sure about the other in the relationship.
Besides a few brilliant moments - scenes of nature, the ending etc - the soundtrack, albeit a beautiful one, is distracting, disjunctive, and, in almost every instance, completely unsuitable; this is the primary reason for me not loving this film - just about everything else is excellent. Not only do they reuse the same 30 second sample like a billion times, it is rarely used well - it rarely FITS the aesthetic;