Sunday, October 31, 2010
We meet, we see a movie, we eat, and maybe we have sex
I find that Godard is at his most powerful and perhaps even his most radical in the moments when he is able to capture real and honest human interaction. For myself, it is these small moments, these intimate conversations, these glances and touches that provide a framework from which the viewer, as a human being, can truly connect with the film, with Godard, with existence. These small moments that we so often overlook, coffee swirling in a coffee cup, arguing with our partners about intimacy or the absence of intimacy, the leaves blowing in the wind, or dancing alone to our favorite song are the defining moments that connect us to one another and that represent our shared experience and emotions.
The clip from 2 or 3 Things I Know About Her at the garage when the camera ends up focusing in on the tree, the sunlight, and the leaves, calls to mind this scene from The Hours when the character, Richard, a poet played by Ed Harris, is talking about his simultaneous need and inability to express what his life has meant.
Richard is debating a similar topic as the one to which the narrator in 2 or 3 Things I Know About Her is asking: how is it possible to communicate our day to day experiences? It is the same task the camera takes up in focusing not solely on the action of the characters but the reflection of the sun on the hood of the car, a child crying, and the daily routines at a hair salon. Although Godard was/is inspired and motivated in his work by politics and current social happenings, I would argue that it is not necessarily in his overt political messages or blatant criticisms of consumerism and society that set him apart as an artist and a director. Rather, it is the apparent ease and consistency with which he is able to show us what our lives look like and why we should pay closer attention.