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The Book of Mary (1985) Directed by Anne-Marie Miéville Miéville’s short is customarily paired with Godard’s Hail Mary, but beyond the constant collaboration between the two directors (and the fact that they’re an item), they aren’t truly connected beyond the name shared by both protagonists: in this case, a young girl who finds herself growing up amidst her parents’ divorce. The short quietly relates moments we all know, from life or from fiction: the reveal in...
Au hasard Balthazar (1966) Directed by Robert Bresson Perhaps one of the most well-known assertions regarding Bresson’s heartbreaking Au hasard Balthazar was made by Jean-Luc Godard, who hailed the film as “The world in an hour and a half.” Godard was not only alluding to the film’s extraordinary depth in depicting the overwhelming hardship and suffering of a donkey throughout his life in rural France, but was also suggesting a greater, universal dimension to Bresson’s masterpiece—one...
The King of Comedy (1982) Directed by Martin Scorsese A belated twin to Taxi Driver, and the missing link between The Shining and Larry Sanders. In scouring-brush mustache and a ghastly succession of leisure suits, De Niro’s Rupert Pupkin fixates on—and ultimately kidnaps—a Carson-like TV host played by Jerry Lewis. The comic’s performance is one of masterful and astringent stillness, as precisely controlled as the seemingly spontaneous pratfalls and vocal tics that made his reputation, his...
Bonjour Tristesse (1958) Directed by Otto Preminger “You go to a place, you leave a place.” Such is the hollow existence the carefree bourgeoisie playboys (and girls) lead along the Riviera in Preminger’s adaption of Françoise Sagan’s novella. It’s clichéd, undoubtedly, and not perhaps the subject matter one usually associates with the Austrian auteur, more commonly aligned with the left-leaning epics he would come to produce. Indeed, Bonjour Tristesse marks the end of a phase in...

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