A review of this — 7 years ago
All you need to make a film is a girl and a gun.
Jean-Luc Godard is probably the most provocative of the French Nouvelle Vague directors and Bande à Part (Band of Outsiders) is both challenging and fun in how he makes a film with the two prerequisites of a firearm and a female. The gun isn’t that interesting, but the girl, Anna Karina, is. Like most films by Godard, the plot isn’t the most significant or interesting part. It’s all about cinema (and Godard’s credit as director is JEANLUCCINEMAGODARD) as a series of images and situations quote from films, novels and society. It’s fun if you’re a fan and interesting even if you’re not. Two men (gangsters, maybe) meet Odile in English class (where very little English is spoken) and convince her to rob the place where she is staying. Upon this thin narrative spine we follow the characters through Paris with some great sequences shot in a convertible, a mesmerizing dance sequence in a cafe, and the famous run through the Louvre where they make it in nine minutes and 43 seconds. Innovative both technically and in the way that it satirizes the conventions of films, it changed many things that we now take for granted. Just as we watch the film and have a crush on Anna Karina, Godard has a crush on cinema and wants to impress her with what he does.