Is some­thing of a hatchet job, por­tray­ing the younger Go­dard as a petty, vin­dic­tive and self-serv­ing nar­cis­sist

Irish Independent - Weekend Review - - FRONT PAGE -

was dev­as­tated by its poor re­cep­tion, and turned in­ward to be­gin a rad­i­cal re­assess­ment.

He was 37, and had re­cently mar­ried Anne Wi­azem­sky, a beau­ti­ful ac­tress 17 years his ju­nior. But he now felt his ca­reer was at a cross­roads, and he found him­self con­fronted by the ter­ror of ir­rel­e­vance. A bril­liant self-pub­li­cist, Go­dard had never been short of witty apho­risms: “Photography is truth”, he said, but “every edit is a lie”; cinema was “the most beau­ti­ful fraud in the world”, and “all you need for a movie is a gun and a girl”.

His say­ings were clever, brim­ming with para­dox, but made him easy to car­i­ca­ture, as he would dis­cover when the stu­dent ri­ots be­gan. Go­dard, liv­ing in Paris, was thrilled by the an­ar­chic en­ergy of the up­ris­ing, and be­gan film­ing and tak­ing part in the protests, and turn­ing up at chaotic meet­ings to trade Marx­ist dia­lec­tic with the stu­dent lead­ers. But in his de­sire to be rad­i­cal, he went to lu­di­crous ex­tremes, and he was rightly pil­lo­ried when he stood up

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