Contempt

Contempt

Video Cassette - 1987
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A young French dramatist in Rome accepts an assignment to write a screenplay for an American film producer. His wife has an affair with the producer who felt he was pushing the affair to further his own career. When she returns to Rome with the producer, something unexpected happens. Parental Discretion advised.
Publisher: Los Angeles, Calif. : Embassy Home Entertainment, c1987.
Characteristics: 1 videocassette (102 min.) :,sd., col.

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v
VonHafenstaaad
May 03, 2017

The story of a failing marriage told through the prism of international filmmaking, it's mostly a chamber piece. in typical Godard fashion, the two lead characters are both recognizable and enigmatically opaque.

t
TheeAvebury
May 03, 2017

Jean-Luc Godard's Contempt is abstract at times, analystic at most, and full of the contemptuous vibes that deliver the film its title, and, indeed, consistently interesting entry in the Godard catalog of work. It examines a lead character in a bit of a sense like how Fellini examined a lead in 8 1/2, except that while in that he toyed and illuminated his fantasies about his struggles in film making process with a carefully tuned attitude and style. He knows he's making an "art" film as much as he's making a "commercial" film, and that adds to its appeal. Like a good number of his films it's off putting at times, but the way the characters look into the film within the film, in this case the Odyssey, as well as they essentially do for this one, Goddard has made a fascinating hybrid on the workings of Hollywood.

p
PeterRLD
Apr 01, 2017

I should know better than to check out yet another movie by Goddard. I kind-of liked his movie Weekend and Breathless was enjoyable in a nasty sort of way, but the rest of his movies have left me cold for one reason or another. Contempt is not standard Goddard fare, but it is still infuriating. "But you loved me yesterday?" - "Yes." "And you don't love me today?" - "Today I have contempt for you." No deep psychological probing here; their marriage falls apart instantly and without any plausible explanation. Next they talk inanely about what went wrong for the next hour. "Is it because I put my hand on that chick's butt?" - "No." The movie is not quite a dead loss, because the cinematography is unexpectedly lush and the location gorgeous but it doesn't make up for all the pretentious babble.

k
kyc14
Feb 13, 2017

french new wave director godard + french bombshell bardot!
godard shows that he can make an understandable film after all, unlike his otherwisely semi-comprehensible ones.
bardot shows that she can act decently, over & beyond her otherwisely semi-bimbo characters in other films.
this film is enjoyable, enlightening & intrigue in many ways.
to me it exemplifies what french new wave was about (can u believe it was in 1950-60’s):
1. moving from b&w era into full colors, directors don’t shy away from testing the abilities of colors. godard plays w/ red & blue filters & employs bold-color costumes/background here.
2. technical exploration of camera movement. here many scenes were shot w/ linear tracking, esp in the condominium home when bardot & her playwright hubby move from room to room during lovers’ quarrel.
3. the plot is only the surface, deep below is the real intellectual thesis. this film’s plot is about a movie production, but its topic is about the illusion, dissatisfaction & conflict in a marriage.
4. location shots are always preferred. they can add dramatic, real-life & identifiable feelings to the audience.
5. sometimes the ending can be abrupt & surprising. this film’s ending is unexpectedly tragic/fatalistic, possibly to resonate w/ the plot’s movie story involving greek mythology. but personally i dislike godard having to push bardot into the same final fate as the arrogant producer. the ending is sad, but perhaps a dramatic & bold statement from godard.

j
JackPurcell
May 16, 2015

For a while during the 1950s they knew they could fill theaters by the name Brigitte Bardot on the marque. They didn't need to do much else, aside from a few skin shots. Every night KOMA, Oklahoma City radio station broadcasting all over the midwest and west some teenager would call in a request for Willie and the Hand Jive [ https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jxU995zbfno ] and dedicate it to Brigitte Bardot.

Jack Palance was a decent actor. He deserved better than this movie.

m
ms_mustard
Apr 29, 2015

I was untouched by the story but was taken by the cinematography of the argument in the apartment and of the house on the water in Capri. Palance was wooden, Bardot was passive-aggessive and Piccoli was clueless.

I liked Breathless and Vivre sa Vie much better.

tkwu21 Mar 03, 2014

The most mainstream film by Godard, probably because it was funded by Americans. Godard, as his cinematographer Coutard said in an interview, felt like sometimes he wasn't doing anything because they had to stick so closely to the script. "Contempt" is definitely less Godard; it is shot-by-shot coherent and contains way less intentional technical faults (of course with the exception of that singing scene where they cut out the music in the middle for dialogue, that was probably the only Godardian trait of the film). A very enjoyable film nonetheless, highly recommend with a serving of wine and cheese.

o
OJiiChan
Jul 29, 2013

Godard gives Bardot a wonderful opportunity that she has the depth of a true actor.
If the viewer will leave their assumptions at the "Door", they may find a lovely film that will stay with them for a long time.

jpdanzig Jan 23, 2013

For Bardot fans only. She shifts her famous pout into high gear here...

r
Ron@Ottawa
Nov 26, 2012

This film by Jean-Luc Godard has several big name stars in it, including Brigitte Bardot, who sometimes was without her clothes. It is one of the more easily understood films by Godard. Scenery around Capri in Italy was gorgeous and a big visual bonus. Godard and Bardot. Can't get better than that. English subtitles.

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r
Ron@Ottawa
Nov 26, 2012

Other: Some moderate nudity by Bardot.

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