Breathless For Lenin – French and German Filmmaking
Posted by Douglas Anderson June 14, 2010 critique, Film, french film, german film Comments(0)
It’s 50 years since Jean-Luc Godard‘s first feature A Bout de Souffle or Breathless to use its English title, opened. Obviously, it’s a hugely important film in the evolution of cinema with much being written about it. Some interesting examples for perusal include a visual overview of the film from The Telegraph, an examination of its use of editing by Nick Lacey and an essay by Dennis Grunes . I first saw the film over ten years ago and it’s certainly up there with my favourite French films such as Les Valseuses, La Haine, 36 Quai des Orfevres and Mesrine: L’instinct de mort to name but a few.
Whilst we are led to believe that French cinema produces some of the greatest films in Europe, a point I wouldn’t argue against, the fact is that over the last few years the foreign language films which have had the most profound affect on me are in fact German. Examples of this include Goodbye Lenin, The Lives Of Others and The Counterfeiters. I once heard it argued that the German language is a tad too harsh on the ear especially when compared to the French language but I don’t believe this to be the case. Moreover, if the script is well written and acted out with aplomb, German filmmaking is more than a match for the French. I will always prefer the cheese making capabilities of the latter though.
Image 1 – Modernariato
Image 2 – moviebase