Louis Garrel, Stacy Martin, Bérénice Bejo
New from Michel Hazanavicius (director of the Oscar-winning The Artist) is this playful, multi-layered biopic of French cinema’s most notorious auteur, Jean-Luc Godard, which screened in Competition at Cannes 2017.
Adapted from the autobiographical novel Un an après by actor Anne Wiazemsky, Redoubtable portrays her tumultuous relationship with Godard, from its start on a film set to its eventual unravelling in the midst of his spectacular philosophical and artistic meltdown during the political protests of 1968. It’s superbly directed, with Hazanavicius creating a jaunty, lightly comedic tone for the outset of their marriage – featuring an abundance of playful Godardian touches that register both as parody of and homage to the great New Wave innovator – but shifting to a darker, more emotive register as Godard is caught up in the protest movement, choosing a path that will see him become alienated both from his audience and from Anne.
With outstanding production design that brilliantly conjures up 1968 France and convincing performances from Louis Garrel (The Dreamers) as the pompous, if brilliant Godard and Stacy Martin (Nymphomaniac) as the mesmerising Wiazemsky, there is much to enjoy in this political, philosophical and biographical roller coaster.