Thursday, July 15, 2010

'Breathless:' Always worth a look

Jean Seberg and Jean-Paul Belmondo in Breathless.

Jean Seburg and Jean-Paul Belmondo made cinema history in Breathless, the 1960 film that's associated with the early days of the French New Wave. Directed by Jean-Luc Godard, Breathless remains a must-see for every would-be cinephile. If you've seen Breathless only on DVD, you now have a chance to catch it on the big screen with a 50th anniversary edition that opens in Denver Friday (July 16). A beautifully restored 35 mm print is reason enough to become reacquainted with Breathless, which the late Pauline Kael called "a witty, romantic, innovative chase picture." The calendar for the Mayan -- where the picture plays for a week -- quotes Martin Scorsese thusly, "As fresh and startling as it was 50 years ago." For once, a quote you can take to the bank. Without Breathless, so much about the subsequent evolution of cinema would have been impossible. So revisit a time when directors and audiences were seized by movie madness, and cinema seemed to be reinventing itself before our eyes.

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