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Le Mepris

  • 103m
  • Directed by Jean-Luc Godard
  • Cast includes Brigitte Bardot, Michel Piccoli, Jack Palance, Fritz Lang
  • Cert 15

Recently reannointed as one of the hundred best films of all time in Sight & Sound’s once-a-decade poll, Jean-Luc Godard’s classic tale of bitter romance and thwarted creative ambition is ripe for rediscovery in the wake of the maestro’s sad departure in 2022.

Writer Paul (Michel Piccoli) is hired by a producer (Jack Palance) to put back on track an adaptation of The Odyssey that is turning into box office poison, under the lens of a famous director (Fritz Lang). Yet he cannot control the narrative of his own marriage to the beautiful Camille (Brigitte Bardot).

The peak of what critic Pauline Kael termed the ‘The Come-Dressed-As-the-Sick-Soul-of-Europe’ cycle of films that wrought the continent beautiful and unsettling in a new cinematic language, it also stars two of the twentieth century’s best European stars – Piccoli and Bardot – in bitter struggle.