Subject: I have found a DVD that I think you would enjoy
|Tout Va Bien - Criterion Collection|
Actors: Jane Fonda, Jean-Luc Godard, Jean-Pierre Gorin, Yves Montand, Vittorio Caprioli
Directors: Jean-Luc Godard, Jean-Pierre Gorin
Genres: Indie & Art House, Drama
In 1972, newly radicalized Hollywood star Jane Fonda joined forces with cinematic innovator Jean-Luc Godard and collaborator Jean-Pierre Gorin in an unholy revolutionary artistic alliance. Tout va bien tells the story of a... more »
An Angry Political Film About Socioeconomic Injustice...
Kim Anehall | Chicago, IL USA | 03/10/2005
(4 out of 5 stars)
"Tout Va Bien opens with a perspective on the economical politics of cinema, which depicts how they write checks for all the parties involved in the film. This is followed by how the story is generated, as the story eventually is simplified to him (Yves Montand) and her (Jane Fonda) in a society with strong political turbulence underneath the surface. Him, a has-been French New Wave director that now shoots commercials, does not want to sell himself to making dim-witted films. Her is his wife and a radio journalist who, like Him, has strong left-wing opinions. This opening presents what to expect from Jean-Luc Godard and Jean-Pierre Gorin, as it turns into a political statement in regards to failing society.
In retrospect, Tout Va Bien brings several interesting notions to the table. Initially, Godard and Gorin bring a visual representation of French society four years after the May 1968 upheaval, which fought for workers' rights and a more just society. However, through interpersonal disconnection the two filmmakers illustrate how these rights have begun to dwindle into nothingness in society. This happens as the bourgeois employs their entrepreneurship on the people of the society through maximizing their profits. Now, four years later, the bourgeois has trampled the society with rules, which has created an unfair balance between the socioeconomic classes.
Godard and Gorin further evolve their ideas on the silver screen through letting the audience visit an unlawful strike in a meat factory where the employees have captured the head of the company and locked him up in his office. The social and political dynamics of the factory are depicted through a cutaway set where the camera zooms out and the audience can see everything going on in every room of the factory. The cutaway allows the audience to see the greater picture of the situation. This later focuses on individuals who explain how they are harassed by supervisors when they need to go to bathroom.
During the illegal strike She (Jane Fonda) carries on interviewing the employees while being a hostage of the strikers. She and her husband side with the workers, as she plans on airing this material later. However, when she presents the material to her producers they stop her from airing it, which illustrates her naïve view of the bourgeois governed society.
Tout Va Bien is a very angry political film that openly depicts Gorin and Godar's contempt for society, as it neglects political equality and financial fairness. Nonetheless, they also show that they are a part of the great machine that keeps moving without consideration for the little people. These two directors show how they help turn the wheel of the great machine in the opening scene where they write checks for all involved in the film and employ big stars in the film such as Jane Fonda and Yves Montand. Nonetheless, the story goes on displaying an interesting farce of the socioeconomic injustice in society, which seems to squeeze many small people.
Despite what political affiliation a person possesses Tout Va Bien offers some insight into how power can be used and misused. People have different motivations and ambitions in life, and in the light of this, the audience should try to understand one another. The film can help build a bridge between people, as understanding and wisdom might help further the progress of the human race. In the end, Tout Va Bien offers an interesting cinematic experience that will leave a feeling of anger within regardless of political affiliation."
Tout Va Bien
yann schinazi | colorado | 03/15/2005
(5 out of 5 stars)
"I am not interested in making political films but in making films politically'-Jean-Luc Godard
Tout Va Bien not only expresses this sentiment of form as message, it is literally about it. It's a story of France in 72, it's the story of Him and Her: Yves Montand and Jane Fonda. It's about the 2 or 3 Vietnams Godard and Gorin created in Paris, 4 years after 68 and 5 years after the death of Guevara. It's a theoretical work in a personal sense, more than anything it is about `becoming his/her own historian', Godard might have been inspired by Bretcht when he constructed his brilliant set to express The Factory where it all happens, but he was also inspired by Jerry Lewis. Financed by Gaumont and with 2 vedettes, Fonda and Montand, Godard and Gorin begin masterfully, with a montage of checks describing the expenses of making the film. In Godard's work, there is a powerful idea of distribution, production, `Man creates ideas' he would say more than thirty years later in `Eloge De L'Amour', the selling of ideas is key in all of Godard's post-`Weekend' work...From the breathtaking editing of `Histoire(s) Du Cinema' to the powerful introduction of `Notre Musique' consisting of video clips of war, Godard is obsessed with the idea of exploring history through means of transmission. Why should history be copyrighted? It is. History is owned by the channels that transmit it. Which brings up the conclusion of `Tout Va Bien', about each one becoming his/her own historian, about each one making his/her own Vietnam, about making films politically. The film, the story of a journalist and a filmmaker, each frustrated with the society that are serving, both aware that there are things to say in their areas, although they have not, and probably never will, acquire the language to say them. So, in a sense, `Tout Va Bien' is the bitter end of May 68, the feeling of solidarity and collective effort is disappearing, the politically aware bourgeois are too caught up in the futility of the rock n' roll theatrics of a revolutionary spirit that is more interested in the process of changing things than in actually making things different. In a sense, `Tout Va Bien' is one of the most self-conscious films ever made, from the voice over that begins the film: `What will you tell Jane Fonda and Yves Montand?' spoken by Fonda herself. In a way, the film expresses Godard's own inability to change the world by making films. By the end of `Tout Va Bien', the strike is over, Montand and Fonda have gone back to their bourgeois institutions of thought. Both have realized the falsity of their illusions to save the world ,they have not become their own historians, they speak the history of others
Great 1972 Post Weekend Godard
Alejandro Otaola | Mexico City | 08/13/2005
(4 out of 5 stars)
"This movie follows the path set by '2 or 3 things', 'La Chinoise' and 'Weekend'. You'll see Godard trademarks such as a LONG tracking shot, actors delivering monologues straight into the camera as-if-being-interviewed, non moving camera even when someone outside the frame is doing the talking or voiceover-thinking, etc...
While the movie was made during the final stages of Godard's Dziga Vertov period it actually contains a plot revolving around the relationship of a couple. He (Montand), once a New Wave movie director who now makes comercials for tv; and She (Fonda), an american correspondant in Paris. Both of them get kidnapped for 2 days inside a sausage factory during a strike and we see how their relationship changes due to them becoming aware of the historical context they exist in.
It's weird to see both movie stars being used not for acting skills but for what they represent: 'international vedettes'; as the opening scene makes perfectly clear. To make a film you need money (even if you are JLG) and to get your money back you need stars.
The Dziga Vertov group made one more film before calling it quits ('Letter to Jane') and since that 'essay' has a direct connection with 'Tout va Bien' Criterion wisely decided to include it inside this DVD.
While this may not be the place to start if you haven't seen much of Godard (Breathless, A Woman is a Woman, Contempt or Band of Outsiders would be more like it) if you've followed JLG's path up to Weekend, they you will certainly enjoy this one and all the extras this edition includes."
Mr. Steiner | New York | 12/07/2005
(3 out of 5 stars)
"Jean-Luc Godard's follow-up to the ultra-Maoist Weekend, featuring Yves Montand as a former New Wave filmmaker and his wife Jane Fonda, as they become active in a factory takeover. The film is of course very sympathetic to Marxism and perhaps Leninism, but it's certainly toned down from the blood fest that is Weekend, perhaps regrettably. Godard insists on reinterpreting and imposing entirely new ideas about what a film can and ought to be, in this case an intellectualized espousal of the working class struggle. A few moments of daring misce-en-scene are worth mentioning; fist, Godard includes an awesome cutaway of the factory to reveal the power-dynamics of the uprising within, and an elaborate tracking sequence in a supermarket to reveal the gross stupidity of capitalist consumerism. Tout Va Bien is clearly a step-down from Godard's brilliant features of the 60's, but it's still provocative and worth any cinephile's time."