Synopsis by Mark Deming
One of cinema's greatest provocateurs, Jean-Luc Godard, presents another barbed but thoughtful meditation on culture, politics and cinema in this experimental drama. Shot using high-definition video equipment and a consumer-grade cell phone, with the crisp images of the former playing off the grain and distortion of the latter, Film Socialisme is divided into three segments. The first takes place on a luxury liner cruising the Mediterranean, as tourists from different lands attempt to communicate in their different languages. In the second, a French family calls a private tribunal, as the children challenge their parents on the issues of Liberty, Equality, and Fraternity while the media watches from outside. And, finally, Godard and his crew visit six different places -- Barcelona, Egypt, Naples, Odessa, Palestine, and "Hellas" (the latter could be Greece or France) -- as he confronts issues of truth versus myth and where the global community is headed. While Film Socialisme features dialogue in a number of different languages, the English-language subtitles which appear in the film deliberately confuse matters by being made up of statements which bear no relation to what is being said onscreen, and usually have a provocative political undercurrent. Film Socialisme received its world premiere at the 2010 Cannes Film Festival; to the displeasure of some distributors, it was made available though Video on Demand the day after its debut screening.
communication, family, gas-station, media, Mediterranean, myth, oceanliner, tourist, tribunal, truth