head to head tourney: spielberg vs. godard/lewis

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by george kaplan, Sep 13, 2002.

  1. george kaplan

    george kaplan Executive Producer

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    This tourney idea is prompted by Godard's interview where he basically called Spielberg a hack. I believe he refered to Steven's movies as "all fakery. It's false." I find this particularly bizarre considering Godard's own movies. The jump cuts in Breathless may have been groundbreaking and part of a new film grammar, but they were certainly not more realistic or truthful than other films, as a matter of fact they are quite gimmicky and 'fake' and 'false' in my opinion. And what's with the (complete lack of) special effects in Alphaville? This is a sci-fi film that takes place in the future and people still drive 1960s cars and live in cheap 1960s motel rooms? Oh yeah, that's not fake or false. I guess Godard would think a lot more of Spielberg if E.T. had shown up in a Ford Pinto instead of a spaceship. [​IMG]
    Anyway, hence the idea for a tournament pitting these two against each other. But even though Godard has made a lot more films than Spielberg, I'm not sure how many people have seen a lot of them. I'll admit I've only seen a handful of them. And so I've decided to let Godard tag-team with one American he does have great respect for. In Godard's own words, this man is "a great director and a great character actor. Brillant". Yes, Godard is speaking of Jerry Lewis. A much better director than Steven Spielberg. Those Jerry Lewis movies are much less fake and false. [​IMG]
    You can nominate up to 8 films by both Spielberg and Godard/Lewis (as either director or actor). I'm not sure if this tourney will have enough interest, but if so, I'll post the first bracket on Tuesday morning.
     
  2. Brook K

    Brook K Lead Actor

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    I'll sit this one out. You obviously have absolutely no respect for Godard as an artist. The two men's goals in cinema are so completely different as to make any attempt to draw comparisons between the two ridiculous.

    Rightly or wrongly, Godard is speaking about the artifice of ideas, theme, intent, he isn't speaking about the artifice of technique, he loves the artificiality of film and it's unique abilities to express and influence.

    I'm posting a quote from a much more knowledgable Godard fan than I from a listserv I'm involved in:

     
  3. Dome Vongvises

    Dome Vongvises Lead Actor

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    I'm kind of interested to see how this tourney pans out. I've never seen a Godard movie, but his comments regarding Spielberg and some of the critiques on his films pretty much destroyed any of my interest in his films.
     
  4. Steeve Bergeron

    Steeve Bergeron Cinematographer

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  5. george kaplan

    george kaplan Executive Producer

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    Brook,
    I'll just say this. I have a hell of a lot more respect for Godard the artist, than Godard the critic.
    I start these tourneys because I think they might be interesting or yield interesting comments. Just like it did with you. [​IMG] Hell I doubt if this tourney will get off the ground, but I already consider it a success just for that.
    And for the record, I certainly don't do these tourneys to validate my own view of cinema. I'm quite secure in my views and don't need validation of them. And most of the time, my views aren't validated by them anyway. [​IMG] Hell, think about it Brook, if people who'd seen 8 Godard films voted in this tourney, we'd have a tourney mostly of Godard lovers, whereas Spielberg lovers would have to abstain and Godard would almost certainly win.
    Aha. Something we agree upon completely. And what you miss was that I wasn't trying to compare them. I was simply pointing out how totally ridiculous it was of Godard to compare them! I wasn't trying to ridicule Godard's movies, I was trying to point out how disingenuous it was of Godard to ridicule Spielberg's movies (at least with the logic he used).
    I don't think it makes a lot of sense to compare John Hughes with Bergman. But if Hughes said that Bergman's films sucked because they weren't serious enough, then that would open up Hughes critique to criticism.
     
  6. Jan H

    Jan H Cinematographer

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    I agree with George's disdain for Godard the critic. As for his gifts as a filmmaker, YMMV, though he doesn't do a lot for me. But his comment that America has no culture angers me, especially considering how significantly the French New Wave was influenced by American movies. Godard is a bitter, hypocritical old crank.
     
  7. Andrew_Sch

    Andrew_Sch Cinematographer

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    'Fraid I'll have to sit this one. Never seen any Godard, and don't plan to any time in the near future.
     
  8. Brian Kissinger

    Brian Kissinger Screenwriter

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  9. Steeve Bergeron

    Steeve Bergeron Cinematographer

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    Sure thing, Brian! Your taste in movies is excellent. Et voila!
     
  10. Brook K

    Brook K Lead Actor

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  11. Brian Kissinger

    Brian Kissinger Screenwriter

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  12. Lew Crippen

    Lew Crippen Executive Producer

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    I know nothing about Godard as a critic and I’ve only seen a eight of his films that had any distribution (and a handful such as See you at Mao that almost no one has seen or now has a chance to see).

    Breathless
    A Woman is a Woman
    The Soldiers
    Contempt
    Alphaville
    Passion
    For Ever Mozart
    In Praise of Love

    Ten Minutes Older than the Cello
    (also directed by Bertolucci, et. al.) is next on my list, but I may have missed it while moving, and its not the kind of film to be immediately released on DVD.

    So, I’d probably have to pass on most rounds, but if this gets off the ground, I’ll play.
     
  13. george kaplan

    george kaplan Executive Producer

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    Well let's call this attempt to do a tournament a little out of the ordinary a failed experiment. I guess it's time to do something more conventional. Coming very soon.
     
  14. Dome Vongvises

    Dome Vongvises Lead Actor

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  15. Andrew_Sch

    Andrew_Sch Cinematographer

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    It's not that I'm anti-Godard or refuse to see his films for any reason, it's just that he's not on my "movies to see" radar and it's unlikely that he will be in the forseeable future.
     
  16. george kaplan

    george kaplan Executive Producer

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    I'm not a huge Godard fan by any stretch of the imagination, but I do think that any movie buff needs to have a least a couple of his films on the to-rent list, even if it's pretty far down. Of course, I think there are far more important films, and I have no idea what other holes other people have, but I'd say that seeing at least Breathless and perhaps Alphaville are certainly important.
     

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