Film Socialisme

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Here's the takeaway from watching Jean-Luc Godard's obtuse screed on...what exactly? The death of culture? The bankruptcy of language? The banality of cruise ships? In any case, there are worse metaphors for Western civilization than the first half's garish ocean liner, and far better ones than the second chapter's petrol station filled with pantomime colonialists. If you don't know French, forget it; the film's subtitles are a mash-up of sloganeering and pidgin English ("Watch notell time. Itshim wariswar"). Had he not already used Contempt as a title, it'd be ideal here; the man formerly known as cinema's greatest living artist has officially spent the last of his currency. This gnomic, cantankerous essay's final words are "No comment." The tragedy is, we may finally wish that Godard would take that statement to heart.—David Fear

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