Published Sep 01, 2001
A new Godard movie is usually an unassailable event for cineastes, so I find that I'm alone in assessing "Eloge de l'amour" as an utterly cold, charmless experience. It's an essayistic tirade on culture and politics (like most of Godard's films, but this time without the wit), and it elusively follows the story of a multidisciplinary artist who doesn't know if he wants to write a novel, make a film or compose a cantata. He leafs through a book of blank pages for inspiration (a heavy-handed metaphor for an impoverished imagination), and Godard takes broad-stroke shots at targets like Spielberg and Hollywood's bowdlerisation of the Holocaust. In one scene the camera lingers over two adjacent movie posters Robert Bresson's "Pickpocket" is playing on a double bill with "The Matrix" oh the irony of it all! "Eloge de L'Amour" manages to be both maddeningly elliptical and reductionistic at the same time.