cutting on the action

photography and film – facts, ideas, values

FILM GODARD In search of Godard’s ‘Sauve la vie (qui peut)

GODARD POSTER Sauve qui peut [la vie]

QUTATION GODARD say with letters

In search of Godard’s ‘Sauve la vie (qui peut)’

Hooray, another excuse to Godard a post! Though of course this time it’s about Godard not a Godard slipped into a post in the most tangential or even irrelevant fashion.

This academic paper by Michael Witt, Prof. of Cinema, U. Roehampton, London, tells the story of how he tried to re-construct a now disparu special film Godard made to go with the showing of Sauve Qui peut (la vie) at the 1981 Rotterdam Film festival, irritiatingly called Sauve la vie (qui peut).

Godard made Sauve la vie (qui peut) – see how this is going to be really irritating – by taking “a print of Sauve qui peut (la vie), excised parts of it, and combined what remained with extracts from four other films from the Film International collection.”

Whoops, we’re back in Historie[s] territory. As you see Histoire[s] was started in the 80s and completed in 1998. Without giving anything away Witt mentions, “.. Sauve la vie (qui peut) functioning as a laboratory for Histoire(s) du cinema.”

Anyway let’s not spoil the story. Read. Handy simplifed diagram to show the structure of both films.

July 14, 2015 Posted by | Jean-Luc Godard | | Leave a comment

FILM Jean-Luc Godard’s favourite films 1956-65

Jean-Luc Godard, Berlin 1961. Photo by F.C. Gundlach

Jean-Luc Godard, Berlin 1961. Photo by F.C. Gundlach

Jean-Luc Godard’s favourite films 1956-65

Hillary Weston, Black Book Nov 2014

Top quote:

I write essays in the form of novels, or novels in the form of essays. I’m still as much of a critic as I ever was during the time of ‘Cahiers du Cinema.’ The only difference is that instead of writing criticism, I now film it.

December 14, 2014 Posted by | Godard, Jean-Luc Godard | | Leave a comment

FILM The Great Beauty 2013 [1]

Toni Servillo in The Great beauty

Dead in the water. Stuck. Wanting to spill out you thoughts on a film you heard about, watched and then, hey everybody, this is good, it’s….ah,um….you’ve got someone you’d like to watch this film before you spoil it by explaining all. Who hasn’t had that sinking moment when you ask someone about film, only to realise the whole film is going to be recalled from prodigious memory for you, and there is no escape. Yes, seen it. Brilliant. And here is entire right down to the details of all the dialogue.

I’ve got the same problem with The Great Beauty directed by Paolo Sorrentino. What can I say? I’ve tried writing it through to see what can be said, ending up with half-written sentences stuttering to a halt well before reaching their destinations. I was even going to use a few Italian phrases heard in the film. No. There is no way round this except to say it’s termed an art-house film. It’s Italian. English sub-titles. It won the best Foreign Film Award at the Oscars last year. Must be worth watching for foreign film enthusiast. It is.

What to say on a film you want someone to watch before you say anything? Are there films you can say quite a lot about without spoiling someone else’s viewing? Is the smallest vignette permitted? No. Not in this case either. All I can say now is, Lo, a film, try it. So. Not even the title translated into Italian. How one has to exercise steely control. And so this post is also addressed to someone who has seen the film who might understand why the title has not been translated in the heading, or in the body of text. (But who can have a conspiratorial wink about knowing why, and in turn not being able to put a kibosh on things by making a comment..)

Perhaps as a displacement activity to assuage the frustration : une petite idée de film.

A man and a woman meet, fall in love. Have a relationship. Then it breaks up for reasons unknown to the audience. On show some bewilderment, anger, sadness, regret, etc. Hankies out. They both loved the movies and spent a lot of time watching them and talking about them. As one does.

They both realise they can’t share anything about film anymore – no communicating at all. They spend a lot of time thinking and imagining what they would be choosing to see, where they would be doing it if still together. Shown by the usual – inevitable – tropes [cleverly masked as homages and satire on] of shots of couples going into movies, etc. Even plugging in DVDs, blubbing, et al. Little scene in which one or other, disconsolate but determined, goes to see a movie. Buys a ticket, stands in foyer with the milling crowd – then after a certain amount of wistfulness, walks back out onto the street.

The upshot, to cut a short story shorter, is the means by each comes to terms with the loss of the film connection amongst the butterflies of lurv, and learns to live and love again. He of course has a film blog and finds he can’t write about films he wants her to see, so stalls, writes around the curly hedges, about production design or mise en scene, or even Godard being rude about actors, anything just to post with the film’s title on the heading. A marker for the future. A dog lifting it’s leg to a lamp post.

Suddenly one day he finds he can write a bit more on films he has seen. But not a lot. He still can’t bring himself to write about the latest releases – he doesn’t want to be a dirty little spoiler. But he realises he can write about obscure art-house movies that no one would want to watch, or even the technicalities of film making like editing.

Here’s one.

In the middle of a long dissertation on Hitchcock’s 1954 Rear Window, from an editing point of view (and POV comes into it a lot..), in Valerie Orpen’s Film Editing, on page 27, referring to an interview with Truffaut, at which point he is talking about the Kuleshov effect:

FILM EDITING orpen p.27 [hitch on actors] [2]

reading this, helps to see a bit more clearly what Godard means about actors. He’s saying the same thing, except he says it in such as a way as to highlight his role as auteur. Ce film, c’est a moi! Tout a fait….mon Dieu….mais oui….c’est vrai….il est moi! Godard=cinema=Godard. And Hitch was in the Hollywood system for the most part i.e. not what would be considered an auteur. Hitch was in control of his projects in a way most Hollywood directors were not. I’ve not read it said he was an auteur in the way the New Wave directors were. Though Godard is greatly interested in him and his work.

May 16, 2014 Posted by | Alfred Hitchcock, Godard, Jean-Luc Godard, POV, Rear Window [1954], The Great Beauty [2013] | , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

FILM Michael Woods on Godard’s Breathless

At the Movies

Michael Woods, LRB, Vol. 32 No 14 ,22 July 2010

Short, interesting, enjoyable.

Qu’est-ce que c’est degueulasse? Oz Skinner takes it on in his blog Godard Montage.

In Musings on Godard’s 1960 classic, Robert Stanley Martin says:

The film’s ending presents them as tragic figures who can’t even commit to their own tragedy; they can only go through the motions of that as well. Godard highlights that with the film’s handling of a single word: dégueulasse.

Qu’est-ce que c’est dégueulasse? Needs a little examining of course. Strangely my very old Cassell’s (1930 edition) has the verb degueuler, v.i. (vulg.), to spew, vomit, but no examples. Further checking shows a more polite rendering would be degoutant. dégueulasse is from degueuler, to puke, to spew, and degueuler from guele, mouth.

Now: dégueulasse

With a bit of reverse translation, there is another nub: rotten “C’est dégueulasse de faire une chose pareille.” That’s a rotten thing to do.

Pas dégueulasse – not half bad : “Pas dégueulasse ce petite vin de pays.”

And finally, WordReference has the sort of list in my post on Haneke’s Caché: dégueulasse, which is pasted in full to get an instant grab of:

dégueulasse adj (dégueu) icky
dégueulasse adj vulgaire (répugnant) offensive, repugnant, disgusting
dégueulasse adj très familier (sale, vicieux) filthy
dégueulasse adj (sale) yucky
dégueulasse adj (injuste) lousy
dégueulasse adj (sans valeur) lousy
dégueulasse adj (sans valeur) crappy
dégueulasse adj hateful, despicable
dégueulasse adj crude, vulgar
dégueulasse adj gross, vulgar
dégueulasse n (expression de dépit) barf

Why worry. Enjoy the film again as depicted by Warren Craghead

April 12, 2012 Posted by | Godard, Jean-Luc Godard, New Wave | , , , | 1 Comment

FILM SCENARIO by Jean-Luc Godard for A Woman is a Woman [1961]

Scenario by Jean-Luc Godard for His l961 Film A Woman is a Woman

transl. Michael Benedikt

Godard’s Scenario Subheading: ‘Based on an idea by Genevieve Cluny’

January 18, 2012 Posted by | Godard, Jean-Luc Godard | Leave a comment

FILM WRITING – Shot and Counter-shot: Presence, Obscurity, and the breakdown of discourse in Godard’s Notre Musique

Shot and Counter-shot: Presence, Obscurity, and the breakdown of discourse in Godard’s Notre Musique

Burlin Barr, Journal of French and Francophone Philosophy, Vol, 18 No. 2, 2010

June 23, 2011 Posted by | Godard, Jean-Luc Godard | , | Leave a comment

FILM ~ En Attendant Godard, a review

En Attendant Godard, A Review

Mathew HoltMeier at Cinema Without Organs, 21 October 2009

June 23, 2011 Posted by | Godard, Jean-Luc Godard | , | Leave a comment

FILM GODARD ~ Godard’s Women- Feminism vs Marxism

Godard’s Women- Feminism vs Marxism

– A review on Godard’s women characters and his idea of feminism

By nom-de-plume Plath-ish (aaargh!)

This version has a different layout

June 16, 2011 Posted by | Godard, Jean-Luc Godard | , , | Leave a comment

FILM GODARD ~ Godard for Beginners

Godard for Beginners

From Dave Harris and Colleagues.

The files button at the bottom of the page has a whole lot of links on all sorts of subjects, some of which are film related.

June 16, 2011 Posted by | Godard, Jean-Luc Godard | | Leave a comment

FILM ESSAY/REVIEW Towards a Perverse Neo-Broque Cinematic Aesthetic: Raúl Ruiz’s Poetics of Cinema

Towards a Perverse Neo-Baroque Cinematic Aesthetic: Raúl Ruiz’s Poetics of Cinema


Michael Goddard, Senses of Cinema, Issue 30

June 12, 2011 Posted by | Godard, Jean-Luc Godard, Raúl Ruiz, Walter Benjamin | Leave a comment


The Dissipating Aura of Cinema

By Kristen Daly

Long essay includes a ‘Godard’:

The idea of the original is tightly linked to the concept of the auteur. Digital technologies serve to undermine the status and authenticity of the auteur. Jean-Luc Godard, whose new mode of cinema helped solidify the concept of auteur, admits outrage at this state of events. He says, “The cinema, as we knew it and as it no longer exists, helped make things visible. . . . The metaphor of the film negative and the positive print was a moral metaphor. But with digital cameras the negative no longer exists – there’s no more negative!” (Bonnaud 40)

History: Digital and Analog

A post in Godard Montage, 28 November 2009. A video interview with film-maker Harun Faroki in which he says,

“In my early years I thought the haptic nature of film was very imortant. You could touch and measure your material a bit like with an old typewriter. Back then you had an entire page in front of you and not only a fraction of it. And you could really measure your work by the stack of paper next to the typewriter. But nowadays I got rid of these little delusions. You can actually work much better on 16mm material much better on your computer. The images on screen are much better and the sound tracks are easier to handle.”

Godard on e-books

Richard Brody 12 January 2011

Interviewed by Brody in Rolle in 2000 Godard:

…explained that he preferred to edit video with analog rather than digital technology, because, he told me, with digital technology, “time no longer exists.” And the example he gave me came not from the cinema but from literature and what he called “the electronic book.” He got up from his chair, brought a book from his bookshelf, and brought it back to his desk.

* Definition of Analog Film Camera

Perhaps chemical/digital might be a better distinction. Though analog-digital is used everywhere.

Though this article with its graphs:

Film versus Digital My Summary

is dated (see digital camera models and max megapixels) but there is a comparison summary at the beginning.

June 9, 2011 Posted by | film - digital cinematography, film analog/digital, Godard, haptic, Jean-Luc Godard | Leave a comment


Oui or Non? (22 December 2010) in blog Godard Montage starts with a screen grab of Godard, with its subtitle in English, Can the new little digital camera save the cinema?

It’s only a short post:

Godard is correct I think not to respond to this question. There is a pause, a moment of silence, and then a cut. The question, in an important sense, is not for him to answer (and it’s a nice touch that the lighting of this shot doesn’t allow us to search for an answer in his facial expressions). This is a question for the next generation of filmmakers and artists. Oui ou non? They must decide – or, by not deciding, fail.

Although the post doesn’t say it, the still comes from Godard’s 2004 film Notre Musique.

There’s a YouTube of the scene without subtitles:

Jim’s Reviews at Jim’s Film Website does a full post on Notre Music:

A student now asks Godard, “Can the new little digital cameras save the cinema?”

One Plus One
Eric Hynes on Jean-Luc Godard’s In Praise of Love

No date on this post.

“Film Socialisme” was shot in digital:

CANNES REVIEW | Oh God(ard): Is “Film Socialisme” the Scandale du Festival?
by Eric Kohn (May 23, 2010)

In Cinemascope:

Spotlight : Film Socialsme (Jean-Luc Godard Switzlerland/France)

Andres Picard

Film Socialism: The Gold Standard
Richard Brody, New Yorker, 1 June 2011

June 9, 2011 Posted by | film analog/digital, film techniques, film theory, French films, Godard, Jean-Luc Godard | Leave a comment

FILM GODARD An exile in Paradise

An exile in Paradise


Richard Brody, 20 November 2000, The New Yorker

June 8, 2011 Posted by | Godard, Jean-Luc Godard, Richard Brody | Leave a comment

FILM REFRAMED ReFramed No. 2: Jean-Luc Godard – The Second New Wave (1980-1989)

ReFramed No. 2: Jean-Luc Godard – The Second New Wave (1980-1989)

by Jordan Cronk and Calum Marsh, 2 June 2011

In Part 2 of ReFramed’s Godard discussion, Cronk and Marsh review the French filmmaker’s “second first” phase as a director.

June 5, 2011 Posted by | Godard, Jean-Luc Godard | Leave a comment

FILM REFRAMED Reframed No. 1 : Jean-Luc Godard – The Political Years (1968-1979)

ReFramed No.1: Jean-Luc Godard – The Political Years (1968 – 1979)

by Jordan Cronk and Calum Marsh, 18 May 2011

In this introductory entry in a continuing reevaluation of cinema’s standard bearers, film fans Jordan Cronk and Calum Marsh dissect mid-period Godard, giving the French experimentalist and agent provocateur a long deserved defense of his post-’60s output.

June 5, 2011 Posted by | Godard, Jean-Luc Godard | Leave a comment

FILM GODARD Film Socialisme reviewed by Daniel Kasman

Cannes 2010: Impossible Story (“Film Socialisme” Jean-Luc Godard Switzerland)

Daniele Kasman, MUBI, notebook, 22 May 2010

June 3, 2011 Posted by | digital cinematography, Godard, Jean-Luc Godard | Leave a comment

FILM VIDEO Jean-Luc Godard’s Histoire(s) du Cinéma

stills from the opening seconds of Chapter 1A – Histoire[s] du Cinema

Cinema is a sign, and its signs are amongst us

Jean-Luc Godard
In JLG by JLG vol II, edited by Alan Bergala

The cinema is not an art which films life: the cinema is something between art and life. Unlike painting and literature, the cinema both gives to life and takes from it, and I try to render this concept in my films. Literature and painting both exist as art from the very start; the cinema doesn’t.” –

Jean-Luc Godard

I need a day to tell the history of a second, a year to tell the history of a minute, a lifetime to tell the history of a day.

Jean-Luc Godard

….a history of cinema and a history of the twentieth century, each inside the other.

John Howe

My Histoire(s) du Cinema starts with a chapter called ‘Toutes les Histoires‘, a lot of small stories in which signs can be seen. It then goes on to say that this story is alone – the only story that has ever been. Then – you know my immoderate ambition – I say: not only is it alone, but it is the only one that will ever be and that has ever been (after, it will not be a story but something else). It is my mission to tell it.”
Jean-Luc Godard

Histoire(s) du Cinéma 1988–98 is a powerful and visually stunning critique of cinema and its relationship to the other arts, as well as a reflexive analysis of the director’s life and work. Originally commissioned for European television, the production spans ten years and includes eight episodes (of a proposed ten) in four chapters.

The project began in 1988 and emerged from a series of lectures Godard delivered at the University of Montreal in 1978. In these lectures, Godard presented an analysis of his own films alongside others, juxtaposing imagery with additional references to painting, newsreels and television. The project also bears the marks of Godard’s early film criticism published in Cahiers du Cinéma. Central to the project is Godard’s ongoing concern with the politics and materiality of filmmaking — for example, the process of editing, which Godard conceives as analogous to the act of lying. Godard reacts against the simple conventions of editing, continually juxtaposing and superimposing images in montages that search for truth and meaning in cinematic imagery. Godard famously asserted, ‘If directing is a gaze, editing is a heartbeat’.{}


Cinema : The Archaeology of film and the memory of a century
Jean Luc Godard, Youssef Ishaghpour, John Howe

Undeniably a work of enormous scope, Jean-Luc Godard’s Histoires du cinéma eludes easy definition. An extended essay on cinema by means of cinema. A history of the cinema, and history interpreted by the cinema. An homage and a critique. An anecdotal autobiography, illuminated by Godard’s encyclopedic wit, extending the idiom established by JLG par JLG. An epic – and non-linear – poem. A freely associative essay. A vast multi-layered musical composition. Histoires du cinéma is all of these. It is above all, a work made by a man who loves and is fascinated by the world of film.

from DVD review at

Histoire(s) du cinéma is Jean-Luc Godard’s most devastating accomplishment as filmmaker/critic/artist/poet/historian. Produced over a period of ten years (1988-1998), Histoire(s) has been heralded as a work of tremendous significance to the practice of both cinema and history; most famously by Jonathan Rosenbaum, who declared it to be “the culmination of 20th century film-making” (1). Whilst not technically a film, Histoire(s) undoubtedly represents the ultimate labour of cinephilic love, an intensive audio-visual retrospective ruminating on the multiple incarnations of cinema, its vital intersections with 20th century history and ultimately, its immanent death, as projected by the medium’s most studied, critically devoted and playfully intellectual independent figure.

Alifeleti Brown in Senses of Cinema

It is possible to hate half or two-thirds of what Godard does – or find it incomprehensible – and still be shatered by his brilliance

Pauline Kael

For any one interested in film, Godard is important; for any one interested in Godard, Histories(s) is important.

Who said that?


Two sets of YouTubes of Chapter 1A and 1B:

Histoires[s]du Cinema Chapter1A – Toutes les Histoires (All the Histories) -1/6

Histoire[s]du Cinema Chapter1B – Une Histoire seule 1/5


wiki: Histoire(s) du Cinema
– lists the individual programmes and films mentioned.


La « partition » des Histoire(s) du cinéma
Jean-Luc Godard

by Céline Scemama

A tabulation of Histoire [s]. E.g. page 1:

Open the graphic in another tab – it will be a easier to read.


“I always begin with ideas and that doesn’t help with the audience.”
Jean Luc Godard interviewed by Scott Kraft – Cigar Afficianado Magazine sept/Oct 1997


These five short essays/reviews summarise succinctly what is going on in this video series:

After the Movies Michael Wood, London Review of Books, 4 December 2008

Histoire(s) du cinéma by Alifeleti Brown in Senses of Cinema

Despite the diffuse gesture of Histoire(s), it might be argued that its central motivation is to collapse the cinema from within by way of an exhaustive process of reflexive audio-visual evocation and deliberation, a post-cinematic montage that implicitly situates the cinema as an archive of a bygone era.

Histoire(s) du Cinéma
By David Pratt-Robson
(2007 review of the Region 2 DVD in Stylus Magazine)

The Man With The Magnétoscope – Jean-Luc Godard’s monumental
Histoire(s) du cinéma as SoundImageTextBook

by Alexander Horwath/ Translation by Aileen Derieg

-Written in 1998 to mark the arrival of CD / book of Histoire[s] with audio of filmtext in German, French and English and a selelction of stills.

The Histoire(s) are always everything at once: moving image, photography, catalogue of paintings, pixel mutation, music, noise, fragment of film sound, speaking voice, writing in the image, literature quarry, essay text. They are sensation and knowledge, information and emotion, theory and practice of the cinema, writing the history and telling the stories. The Histoire(s) are less and, at the same time, more than a Gesamtkunstwerk, because they were never intended to be “a totality” and never “only” an artwork.

For Ever Godard #31 Srikanth Srinivasan in The Seventh Art


Notes in Histoires[s] du cinema Chapter1A – Toutes les Histoires (All the Histories) -1/6 put up by ‘pimpimbulldog’ (aka maths teacher Bogdan from Romania). Pasted here in full (hope he doesn’t mind):

Histoire(s) du cinéma is a video project begun by Jean-Luc Godard in the late 1980s and completed in 1998. Histoire means both “history” and “story,” and the s in parentheses gives the possibility of a plural. Therefore, the phrase Histoire(s) du cinéma simultaneously means The History of Cinema, The Histories of Cinema, The Story of Cinema and The Stories of Cinema.Is an examination of the history of the concept of cinema and how it relates to the 20th century; in this sense, it can also be considered a critique of the 20th century and how it perceives itself. The project is considered the major work of the late period of Godard’s career; it is alternately described as an essay and a poem.

If one wants to be up to the minute about cinema, there’s no cause to be concerned that Histoire[s] du cinéma has been in production for at least nine years — after having been sketched our rather differently, in the form of an illustrated lecture series given in Montreal, a decade prior to that. (2) After all, James Joyces Finnegans Wake, the artwork to which Histoire(s) du cinéma seems most comparable, written between 1922 and 1939, was first published in 1939, but if one read it for the first time this year, one would still be ahead of most people in literary matters. For just as Finnegans Wake figuratively situates itself at some theoretical stage after the end of the English language as we know it — from a vantage point where, inside Joyces richly multilingual, pun-filled babble, one can look back at the 20th century and ask oneself, What was the English language? Godards babbling magnum opus similarly projects itself into the future in order to ask, What was cinema?

Joyce’s province was the history of mankind as perceived through language and vice versa, both experienced and recapitulated through a single, ordinary night of sleep — that is to say, through dreams. Only superficially more modest, Godards province is the 20th century as perceived through cinema and vice versa, both experienced and recapitulated through technology — that is to say, through video. Clips and soundtracks are examined and juxtaposed — partly through the ordinary operations of a video watcher (fast forward, slow motion, freeze frame, muting, and programming) and partly through more sophisticated techniques like editing, sound mixing, captioning, and superimposition. Finnegans Wake considers both the English language and the 20th century as something thats over, and in the same way Histoire(s) du cinéma treats both the 20th century and the history of cinema as something thats liquidated, finished. (This isn’t entirely a new position for Godard. In January, 1965, responding to a questionnaire in Cahiers du cinéma which inquired, What do you think of the immediate and the long-range future of the French cinema? Are you optimistic, pessimistic, or do you have a Lets wait and see attitude?, he replied, I await the end of Cinema with optimism. This is one of the reasons why, to my mind, the fact that Histoire(s) du cinéma is a video is of enormous importance, because video in certain respects is the graveyard of cinema, and its also the graveyard of the history of the 20th century — or at least of the popular perception of that history. (Cogito ergo vidéo reads a title at the beginning of chapter 1b.)


Ph.D. thesis:
Jean-Luc Godard and the Other History of Cinema


Douglas Morrey

University of Warwick Department of French Studies (2002)

Morrey runs through Histoire[s] in detail as one would for a thesis. But quotes are in the original French, untranslated in footnotes.

This is the second PhD linked to from the long list in Film Studies for Free.

Morrey p. 9 :

Godard’s argument in Histoire(s) du Cinema is this that, if montage granted a new way of seeing, it should also have led to a new way of thinking, yet somehow failed to do so.

Other writing by Douglas Morrey

GoogleBooks, Jean-Luc Godard [2005], from A Manchester University Press series, French Film Directors, and an essay, Bodies that Matter, reviewing a book of essays, Carnal Thoughts: Embodiment and Moving Image Culture by Vivian Sobchack [2004].

Academic papers/reviews/essays/blog posts on Historie[s]

Tony McKibbin in Experimental Conversations, Cork Film Centre’s Online Journal: The Butterfly Effect: High Mimetics in Godard’s Histoire[s] du Cinema.
5 stars for usefulness. if you were wondering what this death of film was all about, this at the end of the essay is reassuring:

As Nicole Brenez astutely noted in her contribution to a piece called ‘Movie Mutations’, printed in Film Quarterly and elsewhere, “the death of cinema merely represented a grand melancholy theme that certain filmmakers needed in order to make their films”. Perhaps this is true of no film more than Histoire(s) du cinéma. But does its death not give birth to poetry, perhaps rather like a caterpillar that turns into a butterfly?

Trailer for Godard’s Histoire(s) du cinéma Jonathan Rosenbaum

Le Vrai Coupable: Two Kinds of Criticism in Godard’s Work

Jonathan Rosenbaum

Jean-Luc Godard’s Histoire(s) du cinéma
“Memory of the world” (a lecture)

Laleen Jayamanne August 2007

Histoire[s] du Cinema by Gray Daisies

[1] Introduction à une véritable histoire du cinéma: lectures given by Godard at Montreal Film School before Histoire[s] was completed.
[2] Histoire(s) du cinéma

Histoire(s) Du Cinema: A Requiem for Cinema

Histoire(s) du Cinema (1988-1998, Jean-Luc Godard)
Post from Brandon’s Movie Memories. Brief comments on chapters 1-4 under headings, with a beautiful still in each which help to remind us that films are primarily about the excitment of the visual. And yet Godard’s Histoire[s] is loaded with words!

Difficult work in a popular medium: Godard on ‘Hitchcock’s method’
Rick Warner
First Published in Critical Quarterly Vol 51, Issue 3, pages 63-84 October 2009

On Painting and History in Godard’s Histoire(s) du cinéma (1)
by Sally Shafto

More Montage Necessary John Lingen – Review of Richard Brody;s Everything is Cinema: The Working Life of Jean-Luc Godard

…..the progression of Godard’s anti-American rage has the all the overextended illogic of a scorned lover. In his six-hour series Histoire(s) du Cinéma, completed throughout the 90s, he proposed his thesis that cinematic history be divided into two periods: pre-1945, when the art form was honest; and post-1945, when America (and by proxy Hollywood) became the arbiter of cultural taste, subsequently squandering the opportunity to address the concentration camps in an aesthetically honest way. For Godard, no movie properly addressed Auschwitz when it was most necessary, and therefore the art form was doomed.

Other sources

Critique of Godard by Rancière mentioned in Morrey’s Ph.D. thesis:

The Saint and the Heiress: A propos of Godard’s: Histoire(s) du cinéma
Jacques Rancière

Discourse; Winter 2002; 24, 1; ProQuest Education Journals

Mundane Hybrids: Rancière Against the Sublime Image
Ted Kafala

– Explains Ranciere of Godard in part.

The French film critic Serge Daney plays a part in Histoire[s] and has written about Godard in general. There are a few translations into English such as this selection, The Godard paradox, taken from the Book Forever Godard. Blog: Serge Daney in English.

Jean-Luc Godard’s Myspace page has a many Godard photographs and Craig Keller’s essay on Godard originally in Senses of Cinema.

Cinema : The Archaeology of film and the memory of a century
Jean Luc Godard, Youssef Ishaghpour, John Howe
GoogleBook (Intoduction by John Howe)
2000. English translation 2005

From La Nouvelle Vague to Histoire[s] du Cinema – History in Godard, Godard in History
Colin Nettelbeck

An Audio Visual Brain: Towards a Digital Image of Thought in Jean-Luc Godard’s Histoires[s] du Cinema
by Pasi Valiaho

Le Gai Savoir: Godard and Eisenstein—notions of intellectual cinema
by Ruth Perlmutter
from Jump Cut, no. 7, 1975, pp. 17-19
Although dealing with a specific other Godard film, this adds to our understanding of what we have with Histoire[s].

Images in Spite of All – 4 Photographs from Auschwitz
George Did-Huberman
(English translation: Shane B Lillis)

Eisenstein’s Montage Theories

Editing: The Heart of Film – An Introduction To Film Editing
Click on Theory.

Sergei Eisenstein and the Montage [pdf]

Wiki: Soviet Montage Theory

Brakhage and the Theory of Montage – Victor Grauer

Introduction to Montage – a post from blog Understanding Media

Bigue’s Editing Notes

The Challenge of the Vertical Montage -Essay by Henrik Juel

Film editing and Montage pages from
Awfully set out, old-fashioned mixed font, mixed colour pages the way How to Design Good Website manuals say not to do it, but there is simply explained basics in there.

Battleship Potemkin by Christian Blauvelt, Slate Magazine, 19 April 2010
Andrew Sarris is quoted:

“The totalitarians of the Left embraced Eisenstein and montage as the first step toward brainwashing humanity, but the cinema quickly lent its manipulative social powers to television. The cinema returned to formal excellence, abandoning the salvation of mankind as the criterion of cinema.”

Wiki: Room 666

YouTube of Godard’s Room 666

La Geo-politique de l’mage dans les Historie[s] du cinema de Jean-Luc Godard
by Junji Hori

– 19 page .pdf, arguing Godard’s take is arrogantly Euro-centric. Others have said the same thing. He also dismisses British film.

Jean-Luc Godard – Short biography and filmography

Jean Luc-Godard page in They Shoot Pictures, Don’t Thye?

The Misery and Splendors of Cinema – Godard’s Moments Choisis des Histoire(s) du Cinéma

– Review by Robert Kesler of the 87 minute version of Histoire[s]

Soft and Hard: Intimations insinuations implications

Rod Stoneman in Kinema relates his collaboration with Godard and Anne-Miéville in the making ofA Soft Conversation between Two Friends on a Hard Subject (1985), a film commissioned by CH4, in which he quotes some of the dialogue (Mieville comparing his work and approach to hers, for example) and shows how ideas in Histoires[s] were already there. But more importantly describes Godard’s imperatives and a little bit about the man himself.

Moments Choisis des Histoire(s) du Cinema
by Keith Uhlich

The director himself has suggested that every cut is a lie; Godard’s approach, then, is the continual juxtaposition and superimposition of “lies” in an ongoing search for truth. Thus, Moments mimics the workings of its creator’s mind: one thought, one reference leads inexorably to others, sight and sound mirroring the inherently questioning nature of the human soul.

when speaking of television’s detrimental effects on cinema, Godard lives down to the disheveled old fuddy-duddy persona that he physically embodies on-screen. Making grand pronouncements from his back-alley soapbox, the director panders to the death-of-cinema acolytes, those faddish doomsday prophets who latched onto the kernel of a good idea (for television has certainly had its adverse effects) and perverted it into an infallible truth of Leviticus.

“The film we had imagined”, or: Anna and Jean-Luc Go To the Movies

by Adrian Danks

Deals with films within films in Godard and generally, though doesn’t mention Histoire[s]

Methods of Détournement by Guy-Ernest Debord

Détournement as Negation and Prelude Situationist International 1959

For a Revolutionary Judgment of Art Guy Debord 1961
Really only for this:

“….an alteration of “the present forms of culture” depends on the production of works that offer people “a representation of their own existence.”

M.A. Thesis by Farris Wahbeh:

Forget Godard: The Cinematic Abductions of Pier Paolo Pasolini and Guy Debord

{1} Intro

{2} Chapter 1: Pasolini’s Lingua X

{3} Chapter 2: Becoming-street: In girum imus nocte et consumimur igni as cinematic dérive

There have been dissenting voices from the beginning of Godard’s career as a film-maker, as exemplified by the ‘statement’, The Role of Godard, issued by The Situationist International in 1966. Clearly they hadn’t got the whole of his film and video oeuvre at that time, but you get the idea with such phrases as “…the Club Med of modern thought”.

‘No Trickery with Montage’: On Reading a Sequence in Godard’s
Pierrot le fou
Daniele Morgan – Film Studies Issue 5 Winter 2004

Between Sound and Space blog review of ECM soundtrack of Histoire[s]

October 8, 2010 Posted by | Alfred Hitchcock, André Malraux, film [its techniques], French cinema, Godard, Jean-Luc Godard, Pudovkin, Rancière | , , , , | Leave a comment

FILM GODARD Le Mépris: Analysis of mise-en-scène

Le Mépris: Analysis of mise-en-scène


Roberto Donati



September 24, 2010 Posted by | film analysis, film directors, film editing, film theory, film [its techniques], French cinema, Godard, Jean-Luc Godard, mise en scene | Leave a comment

FILM GODARD ESSAY A Bout de Souffle: The Film of the Book

A Bout de Souffle: The Film of the Book

First published in Literature/Film Quarterly 32:3 (2004), 207-212

Can’t see author, but if anyone knows who wrote it, I’ll add it later.

September 24, 2010 Posted by | film adaptation, film analysis, film [its techniques], French cinema, Godard, Jean-Luc Godard | , , , , , , | 1 Comment

FILM GOOGLEBOOK GODARD ~ Jean Luc Godard’s Hail Mary: women and the sacred in film

Jean-Luc Godard’s Hail Mary: women and the sacred in film


Maryel Locke, Charles Warren, Jean Luc Godard, Anne-Marie Miéville

August 29, 2010 Posted by | film [its techniques], Godard, Jean-Luc Godard | , | 1 Comment