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Histoire(s) du cinema

Film/Video

Image courtesy Gaumont
Histoire(s) du cinema
Parts 1A-2B Jean-Luc Godard, 1994
Fri, Nov 4, 2005 7 PM
Here's a rare chance to see a magnum opus by one of the towering figures of contemporary film. Jean-Luc Godard offers a dazzling, multifaceted, critical study of the moving image in the modern world, and meditates on his own role in the story.

This eight-part video series was made from 1989 to 1998; we'll screen it over two evenings, with four episodes each night. Tonight's screening presents the first four (program approx. 150 minutes). "The summa of Godard's work: encompassing, even oceanic, it comes closest to the dream of possessing and remaking the world through the medium and material of cinema."—James Quandt



Rarely available for viewing in this country, Jean-Luc Godard's magisterial series of essays, Histoire(s) du cinema is his audacious attempt to use his own highly personal history of the cinema to make sense out of nothing less than the history of the last century.

Drawing from his own personal archive as well as those of Hollywood and European masters, Godard composes these filmic essays in almost musical and literary terms. You'll find symphonic, polyphonic structures, as well as elaborate layerings of images and analogies, methods some critics have likened to those employed by James Joyce in Finnegan's Wake.

Tonight's program:
Part 1A: Toutes les histoires (51 mins.)
Part 1B: Une histoire seule (42 mins.)
Part 2A: Seul le cinema (26 mins.)
Part 2B: Fatale beaute (28 mins.)

Note: Although there is some English subtitling of these Histoire(s), other portions are in the original French, with the entire soundtrack—which Godard also issued as a separate acoustic work—amounting to an aural collage of voice-over, music, and appropriated sounds.

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