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Who was Jean-Luc Godard, the director who started a revolution with the “Nouvelle Vague”?

Por: Yazmín Veloz13 de septiembre de 2022

The iconic French film director died today at the age of 91, but his legacy will remain forever in history.

The legendary film director Jean-Luc Godard died on September 13 in Switzerland, surrounded by his closest relatives. The standard bearer of French cinema decided to take his own life with assisted suicide at the age of 91 because according to his relatives, he was quite tired.

It seems that from the beginning of his career, until his farewell in this earthly world, the filmmaker born in Paris, but who lived for decades in Switzerland, decided to express that rebelliousness that characterized him and took the decision to rest from this life.

The world was shaken by his death, which is a great loss for the film industry, as Godard is considered the father of the Nouvelle Vague or New Wave of French cinema.

Who was Jean-Luc Godard?

He was born in Paris on December 3, 1930, in a family that, although not millionaires, was well-to-do, so he enrolled in the historic Sorbonne University, although he never finished his studies, as he spent all day watching movies because of his love for cinema.

During the fifties, he worked as a film critic for the magazine Cahiers du Cinema until he decided to start his career as a director.

In the summer of 1959, he began shooting his first feature film, À bout de souffle, based on a script by François Truffaut - of whom he was a close friend at the time. The film started a revolution in the way of filming by using techniques that were unorthodox at the time, such as shooting hand-held, using the documentary style, and jumping from one shot to another.

The film was nominated for several awards at major festivals such as Cannes and Berlin. It also brought critical attention to his work.

What was the Nouvelle Vague?

It was a revolutionary film movement that emerged as a protest against the publications that appeared in the renowned French magazine Cahiers du Cinéma.

The texts that were written in this regard, are because of the work of the founder of this magazine, André Bazin, and intellectuals and film critics aimed to defend the essence of French cinema.

Although directors such as François Truffaut were among the most recognized in this cultural movement that marked the twentieth century, the reality is that Godard is considered the father of this movement, since he was the one who shaped the Nouvelle Vague in his columns.

Jean-Luc Godard’s main films

Story originally published in Spanish in Cultura Colectiva


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