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Goodbye to Godard

September 22, 2022 - October 2, 2022

ACMI celebrates the life and career of iconoclastic French auteur Jean-Luc Godard, who passed away earlier this month at age 91, with Goodbye to Godard – a season showcasing six films from the director’s career-defining French New Wave period, including his breakout 1960 film Breathless  (À bout de souffle) and his satire of youth culture, Masculin, Féminin (1966).

Six films will screen as part of Goodbye to Godard:

Breathless (1960) – Godard’s debut feature heralded the French New Wave movement and inspired generations of rule breakers that followed. After a car-theft-gone-wrong, small-time crook Michel (Jean-Paul Belmondo) finds himself pursued by the cops, shooting one in the process. After fleeing to Paris, Michel finds himself in the arms and bedroom of his American girlfriend Patricia (Jean Seberg), but it’s not long before his dark deeds catch up with him.

A Woman is a Woman (1961) – in an unexpected follow-up to Breathless, Godard rebounds with a playful reworking of the Hollywood musical. Anna Karina is Angela, an exotic dancer who wants a child at all costs, but her lover Émile (Jean-Claude Brialy) refuses. Reaching the end of her tether, she tells Émile that she’s asked their friend Alfred (Jean-Paul Belmond) to do her the honours and that he’s accepted.

Contempt (1963) – Godard’s singular foray into ‘mainstream’ filmmaking sees aspiring playwright Paul Javal (Michele Piccoli) called in as a script doctor on a film adaptation of Homer’s The Odyssey. Caught between the film’s director, Fritz Lang (playing himself), intent on making a faithful adaptation of a classic text, and a crass American producer, Prokosch (Jack Palance), Paul’s diminishing professional integrity unfolds alongside deepening estrangement between him and his wife, Camille (Brigitte Bardot).

Alphaville (1965) – a classic, hardboiled detective-type is thrust into a mysterious world in Godard’s science-fiction classic. After arriving in the technocratic dictatorship of Alphaville, Secret Agent Lemmy Caution (Eddie Constantine) sets out on a mission to remove Professor Braun, the creator of an evil computer that rules the city. Upon his arrival, he is greeted by the professor’s alluring daughter Natacha (Anna Karina), who accompanies him on his quest.

Pierrot Le Fou (1965) – Godard continues his fascination with the American crime genre and is reunited with the stars of Breathless. Ferdinand, aka Pierrot (Jean-Paul Belmondo), dissatisfied with his professionally-stalled life and listless marriage in Paris, sets off on a picaresque journey across France, with the incandescent Marianne (Anna Karina) – the couple’s babysitter. Pierrot’s fantasy idyll is upended when he realises they are being pursued by Marianne’s shady brother.

Masculin Féminin (1966) – Jean-Pierre Leaud and Chantal Goya embody the restless spirit of mid-60s Paris in Godard’s funny-tender, free-wheeling, reportage-style satire of youth culture. ‘The children of Marx and Coca-Cola’ stake their generational claim in a film composed of fifteen vignettes, in which a young would-be intellectual aspiring to poet-revolutionary status is trying to work out which of his attractive woman friends he really loves.

3 session pass
Full $45
Concession $39
ACMI Member $33


September 22, 2022
October 2, 2022
Event Category:


ACMI, Melbourne
Flinders St
Melbourne, VIC 3000 Australia
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