‘The Image Book’ Trailer: French Director Jean-Luc Godard Returns With a Fascinating Deconstruction of Cinema

/Film | 1/25/2019 | Ben Pearson
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Iconic filmmaker Jean-Luc Godard, a figurehead of the French New Wave movement which pushed the envelope of cinematic storytelling methods back in the 1960s, has spent much of his career experimenting with form. That experimentation continues in the 88-year-old’s latest cinematic effort, The Image Book, which played at this year’s Cannes Film Festival. The trailer has arrived, and I can say without hesitation that it’s unlike any trailer you’ve ever seen.

I admittedly haven’t been keeping up with Godard’s recent directorial output, but this trailer (via The Playlist) is mesmerizing. Siddhant Adlahka reviewed this film for us from the Mumbai Film Festival last month, and I’d highly encourage you all to take a few minutes to read his review. But for those short on time, I’ll pull out a quick excerpt:

Image - Book - Video-essay - Functions - Breathless

The Image Book, more frenzied video-essay than traditional narrative, functions much as Breathless once did, albeit in a radically changed environment. Take, for a moment, the snaking long-shots and the jarring jump-cuts that Godard helped popularize; they’ve gone from the radical new cinematic slang of the era to something easily recognizable. Something used, and understood, with far too much ease. It’s that ease of the image, the comfort with which we as filmmakers — all of us, who carry around digital cameras in our pockets — wield this now blunt weapon that Godard seems to eulogize. In the first half of The Image Book, he presents us with a disorienting non-narrative, composed of harsh sounds and images including clips from all your favourite classics, manipulated to the point of nausea, dropping frames (if not dropping the image entirely) and sanding pictures down to the point of simply being ideas. In the process, he demolishes the cinematic lingua franca we now instinctively understand, replacing it with something grotesque, and yet, something entirely...
(Excerpt) Read more at: /Film
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