Prenom Carmen, or First Name Carmen, is a Jean-Luc Godard
film "based on" the familiar Bizet opera.
Carmen is either a concert violinist rehearsing Beethoven
quartets and daydreaming, or she is Jean-Luc Godard's niece who
holds up a bank to raise money then hits on the idea of pretending
to make a film and kidnapping either a wealthy man or his daughter.
Jean-Luc Godard, playing himself, is living in a hospital, his choice, but is willing
to help Carmen make her film. During the bank robbery, she is caught
by a young policeman who falls in love with her and they escape
together. He is arrested then acquitted, but the two are star-crossed, and the relationship is not destined to last.
I think I am
now supposed to write about how Jean-Luc brilliantly deconstructed the
Carmen story, creating one of his most accessible films, full of
social commentary and wry humor. If you need a collection of
flowery and pretentious verbiage like that, IMDb's linked reviews and comments will
build your collection in no time. Unfortunately, even pretending
that I understand what the above means, I am not sure I agree. Most honest people find it a difficult
watch, and are not sure they completely understand it. But I have
included the requisite flowery phrases apropos
to French period art films, so that I can then finally talk about
the film's true merit: Marushka
Detmers shows everything, full frontal and rear, as does costar Jacques Bonnaffé.
Also daring was a scene where Bonnaffé joins Detmers in the shower than jacks off
So is the film really a retelling of Carmen? Well ...
Young thief/concert violinist
Bizet's fiery latin score
Beethoven and a Tom Waits song
Doomed love affair
Doomed love affair
... you tell me.
Whatever it is, it is damned strange, and would be unwatchable in
my opinion were it not for the nudity. Bottom line: If you enjoy that
"WTF?" feeling, or
really want to see Marushka Detmers very naked, this is your film.
Why, I can't believe Tuna found this pretentious:
"He is searching for a point of equilibrium between the made and
the found, the ordered and the chaotic--a point from which to define
an aesthetic for the 80s."