Legendary French filmmaker Jean-Luc Godard has had a career nearly unrivaled in the history of the cinema. And yet, at 83 years young, he appears to be ever more at the forefront of a medium he has helped refine and energize for generations. With classics like Breathless (1960), A Woman Is a Woman (1961), and Alphaville (1965), Godard helped usher in the French New Wave and has proven influential to multiple generations of filmmakers all around the world, including Quentin Tarantino, Robert Altman and Martin Scorsese. His newest feature, Goodbye to Language, which premiered at the Cannes Film Festival this past May and won positive notices from critics, is now headed for a U.S. theatrical release this fall.
The highly experimental Goodbye to Language is a romantic drama that follows the relationship of a married woman and a single man, with the latter half of the movie drawing from the point of view of a stray dog. What’s striking at the outset is that Goodbye to Language, which runs but a lithe 69 minutes, was shot in 3-D, suggesting Godard is still every bit the innovator and rabble-rouser to the world of filmmaking as when the one-time Cahiers du Cinema film critic started making his own features more than fifty years ago. The effect of Goodbye to Language seems to be working, enticing a robust critical reaction at Cannes this year. The film even won Godard the Jury Prize from the Jane Campion-headed Cannes jury, which the film shared with Xavier Dolan’s Mommy (ironically the prize was split between the oldest and youngest directors in the 2014 competition).
The movie is slated to play the festival circuit, and will premiere in New York at the Film Society of Lincoln Center and IFC Center in late October in advance of a national theatrical rollout. The film will be presented in 3-D. Expected for sometime in 2015 is release on VOD, home video, and 3-D Blu-ray. Kino Lorber secured North American distribution rights to the title, continuing their relationship with Godard, as they previously provided U.S. distribution to Godard’s 2010 feature Film Socialisme. Kino Lorber CEO Richard Lorber said of the acquisition, “To have the honor to release this ecstatically brilliant, career-capping film by the iconic Jean-Luc Godard leaves us appropriately speechless.”