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Contempt (Criterion Collection) back to product details

I Don't Love This Movie Any More
written by RJones3 April 2, 2007 - 10:24 AM PDT
1 out of 1 members found this review helpful
Contempt seems at first sight (or first hearing) to be dubbed over. That would not be out of the question for a "new wave" movie of the sixties, which is typically a foreign-language film. The impression, in any case, is of flat, perfunctory dialog accompanying a sometimes overwrought visual. The new-wave filmmakers liked to regard themselves as "auteurs," but they were clearly much more interested in the intricacies of sight than the grandeurs of language, despite the occasional reference to literary classics.
The literary reference in Contempt is to the Odyssey of Homer, and there is much Nietzsche-like opining on the contrast between the heroic and the modern. For our purposes the contrast between the engaging and the fatuous will do, and the character played by Piccoli definitely falls into the latter category. His wife, played by Bridget Bardot, is offended by his deference to the overbearing producer, played by Jack Parlance. Parlance is miscast in this role (as Roger Ebert agrees), which requires someone considerably more oafish. Ironically, Parlance's paycheck, along with Bardot's, ate up a good part of the film's budget.
I missed Bardot as the sex kitten of the sixties, and this movie did little to make up for my loss. Here she is a liberated woman, exhibited only in mildly interesting tush shots. Some critics attribute her underexposure to a disgruntled director, but the cerebral atmosphere of the film would have rendered anything more gratuitous. We are left to wonder about the ambitions of this former typist. It is clear at least that she no longer loves her husband, and the more he asks why, the clearer it becomes.

brilliant film.. brilliant vision..
written by psychodrama311 May 28, 2003 - 11:04 AM PDT
9 out of 10 members found this review helpful
a view of the film industry through the eyes of an outsider. godard films one of the most brilliant (can i actually use that word too much when talking about godard) takes on the film industry itself. he uses bardot as the focus but then films everything else around her.. the reactions of everyone to her. this is perhaps her finest work. the one thing that keeps up with the dialogue. the point.. and wonderful.. like the rope tying everyone wraps around the plot and the characters.. a great film..

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(Average 7.59)
300 Votes
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