Masculin Féminin

1966 [FRENCH]

Drama / Romance

IMDb Rating 7.5 10 12990

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April 20, 2021 at 02:52 AM


Brigitte Bardot as Brigitte Bardot
Jean-Pierre Léaud as Paul - un jeune homme instable
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957.38 MB
fre 2.0
23.976 fps
1 hr 44 min
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1.74 GB
fre 2.0
23.976 fps
1 hr 44 min
P/S 28 / 44

Movie Reviews

Reviewed by Quinoa1984 9 / 10

even through its moments of experimentation it's a fun, fully intriguing Godard flick

I saw Masculin Feminin in a class last year and like with most of Jean-Luc Godard's films I was taken aback by how much the film doesn't stick to anything expected for the audience. This is Godard at the peak of his powers as a director for what has become a line associated forever with Godard- the Marx and Coca-Cola generation of people (or, those born in the 1940's). Like My Life to Live, the film is broken up into specific acts, but this time it isn't as discernible and even plays on when a new segment should start or end (sometimes it changes quite quickly). And the spontaneous feel that goes with many of the better Godard films is in full swing here, as Godard (according to the interviews on the DVD) sometimes just feeds the actors lines, or just questions to get true, if more documentary-like, answers from the actor(s). It's really one of the best films from the period that made Godard known all over the world; anyone seeing his later, more obscured semantic essay films need only to see a film like this or Band of Outsiders to see the filmmaker dealing with real characters and convincing dialog.

Jean-Pierre Leaud is actually just as good here as he is in the 400 Blows, only in a slightly different way. The youth of this actor is still ever present, but here it's changed to be a little more of a radical guy. The uncertainty of the character of Paul, his interest in the opposite sex, and having an intelligent but aimless walk of life, is very in tune with the other Truffaut creation. He becomes, along with his co-stars (like the young, beautiful Chantal Goya as Madeline and Marlene Jobert as Elisabeth), if not really a direct representation of all the French youth at the time, something of a reflection of youth is like in general is present. These characters don't know what they want for their lives, but they do know that things like sex, rock and roll, protesting the oppression of governments, and keeping an interest in parts of life are what make up their day-to-day existences. What might seem very casual styling in following these characters, particularly Paul, is a bit more calculated than expected. Everything that unfolds goes from being very funny to philosophical to fly-on-the-wall to even the poetic. That the cinematography and visual style is more often than not exciting in where the camera may move or not, or where the length of the shot will hold.

Individual moments make up some of the best that Godard's ever received, and from actors who being caught off-guard is not a negative. I loved the dialog between Paul and Madeline early in the film, as simple questions have some deeper contexts. Or when Paul is just walking along, a rock song starts, and a guy whips out a knife only to something very unexpected with a great, ironic payoff. Or the movie within the movie, a parody on Bergman's The Silence that isn't disrespectful and at the same time captures a cool attitude that these characters are looking at even if it's a bit above their own sexual attitude. But most striking both times I watched the film, even in its sort of un-reality and very 'movie' kind of way is when Madeline says a very poetic bit of wording in bed in the dark. Even in the moments when Godard's off-kilter filming isn't as appealing as in other points, as one who is apart of this age group the characters are in, I got enveloped in their loose, tragic-comic conversations and observations (not as preachy or didactic as in other works of the filmmaker). The ending, too, is perfectly shocking and puts a fine dramatic cap on what is really a bittersweet view of these people. And along with getting these characters right, this time and place, the places and people they encounter (little poetic notes of their own, as on the subway or in the coffee shops) add to its overall effect. One of the best films of 1966.

Reviewed by framptonhollis 9 / 10

very 1960's, very godard, VERY good!

"Masculin Feminin" is a definitive example of French New Wave filmmaking. It is experimental, comic, risky, wild, and fun, a spectacle that find cinematic magic within even the most subtle and mundane of situations. Although it is often listed as nothing more than a drama, this is also an extremely funny movie, perhaps one of Jean-Luc Godard's very funniest. From the opening moments, bizarre comic mischief is springing left and right. Through unexpected surrealism and occasional violence, Godard masterfully weaves dark humor into this often tragic love story.

The performances are also quite exceptional. Jean-Pierre Léaud further stabilizes his spot among the greatest French actors, and Chantal Goya is no less than absolutely charming and delightful. The characters are well developed-often likable, but sometimes despicable, like most human beings. There are times in which you, as an audience member, agree with their actions and beliefs, and there are times in which you must disagree. Through their ups and downs, "Masculin Feminin" explores a youthful couple's relationship in a unique and hysterical way. Fusing satire, sadness, fantasy, and comedy, "Masculin feminin" is very much a Jean-Luc Godard love story, meaning that it is heavily stylized, but also heavily realistic, just not in the conventional sense.

Reviewed by StevePulaski 8 / 10

Shouldn't work, but thanks to its dedicated portrayal of the motivations and thoughts of the sixties French adolescents and young adults, it does

Masculin Féminin has been called one of Godard's most challenging films by critics and scholars alike. However, having seen both Film Socialisme and La Chinoise, I think this one isn't nearly his worst in terms of extractable ideas and themes. It's ambiguous, often difficult to watch and grasp, and very disjointed, yet it is also one of the best presentations of pop art, pop culture, and time-specific culture I have yet to see. It's Easy Rider and Two-Lane Blacktop for the 1960's France.

The aforementioned criticisms of Masculin Féminin are to be expected with a Godard film; he is a man not easily defined and one who defies all narrow stereotypes of filmmakers and free-thinkers. He is a man who had the unbelievable audacity to go against popular French cinematic customs during the tumultuous times of 1960's, making films that defied convention, critiqued western culture, and valued experimentation over traditionalist practices. Consistently, with the lone exceptions probably being Pierrot Le Fou and Weekend Godard's films are usually more fun to contemplate, analyze, write about, and discuss than they are to watch. They're meals and things you don't appreciate until they're over and done with even though one doesn't necessarily want to revisit it any time soon; watch two in an evening, especially his political works, and I fear for your mental wellbeing.

Masculin Féminin centers around Paul (Jean-Pierre Léaud), a young France idealist who falls in love with a pop star named Madeleine (Chantal Goya), completely ignoring their polar opposite views of the world, music, politics, etc. Paul and Madeline, among Madeline's close circle of friends, begin having intimate and inspirational conversations about those topics, often reciting poetry or reading political text in order to communicate their point. In the meantime, Godard structures the film like he so often does, with quick-cuts and interjecting title cards bearing often disconnected and unclear text that we, the audience member, have to try to connect to the film in some way.

One of the Godard's most famous title cards appears in this picture, around the third act of the film, and reads, "This film could be called The Children of Marx and Coca-Cola." Here, Godard seems to be stating that the characters we center on in this film, and perhaps he himself, a "Marxist intellectual," are only impacted by two budding forces of the time; they are Marxism, the political ideology coined by the teachings of Karl Marx that addresses issues of class struggle and conflict between people of differing socioeconomic lifestyles by critiquing capitalism and emphasizing a more communistic approach to governing, and Coca-Cola, the globally-recognized soft drink brand that could easily be dubbed a corporate empire. Now, I think the generation today could be called "The Children of Income Inequality and Apple."

Another great quote that pops in the film, this time it's uttered aloud, is stated by Paul when he is discussing the roles of a philosopher and a filmmaker. He states very simply, "a philosopher and filmmaker share an outlook on life that embodies a generation." I like this quote almost as much as the above quote because this one compares two ostensibly different people and makes them come together in hopes that people see they achieve the same goal. This could also come full circle to reference Godard himself, as Godard is very much a Marxist philosopher and thinker as well as a radical, experimental filmmaker, and he damn-sure embodies the mindset and opinions of the sixties French students and young-adults.

With that, Masculin Féminin is a dialog-heavy film where the dialog can be increasingly alienating and very often dry and unappealing. Background knowledge of the French New Wave movement, mild understanding of Marxism, as well as a high tolerance for complex political readings is almost essential here. In theory, the film shouldn't work - it's far too disjointed, punctuated by interjecting title cards that still do little other than muddle the narrative, and has little character development outside of rather basic descriptions. However, scarcely has a film been this more focused and successful at developing the motivations and thoughts of a specific generation.

Starring: Jean-Pierre Léaud and Chantal Goya. Directed by: Jean-Luc Godard.

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