2 x 50 Years of French Cinema

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Internationally renowned French filmmaker Jean-Luc Godard offers this documentary for his entry in the British Film Institute commissioned series, "Century of Cinema," designed to be a collection of the personal opinions of renowned international filmmakers concerning the cinema of their native countries. Godard spends much of his documentary questioning the validity of the centennial celebration as can be seen, even in the title of the film which patently avoids the number "100." Godard begins with having his old friend, the actor Michel Piccoli, coming to visit the Swiss lakeside hotel where the director is staying. Piccoli is the representative of the French national centennial committee and is not prepared for the rigorous intellectual interrogation Godard has in store for him. The questions are hard to answer and are designed to point out Godard's feeling that the timing of the celebration is off, and that the French filmmakers, who invented cinema, have become complacent in allowing American films to dominate the minds of international audiences so that the average French citizen will know the names of Madonna and Arnold Schwarzenegger, but will know nothing of Annabella, Dita Parlo, or Jacques Becker. ~ Sandra Brennan, Rovi


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