Backlog #25: La Chinoise (1967)

I was worried that this film would either be too over my head or too all over the place for me to enjoy much. I feared wrongly (or discounted Godard, as he’s in command here) – it’s very watchable, for its style; and its didactics I found worthwhile (I certainly didn’t object to them – I perhaps feared that this film was a commie blowout).

It’s a clear demonstration of Godard’s move towards political didatics well outside of the mainstream (where he would be a year later). Whereas Masculin Feminin, released two years earlier, is concerned with a group of young people engaging with materialism (backgrounded by geopolitics), La Chinoise has moved the scenario onwards: the five young people in this film form up a neo-maoist revolutionary cell and they look inwards, at how they can destroy the system. Both films find that the groups individuals go about their goals in different ways, and this leads to disaster.

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