The film is a broad indictment of consumerism, politics, and pretty much everything about humanity in general. In essence it's a story about a couple who try to take a weekend vacation in France, only to be stymied at every turn by traffic, revolutionaries, and ultimately murder in the woods. It's basically a comedy, inasmuch as any film in which a civil war erupts and people get eaten by each other can be considered comedy.
Forget the plot, though -- which is just as long on speeches about sex and violence as it is on lingering scenes with no dialogue at all. This is the kind of movie that Monty Python got off on making fun of -- the kind where a band of peoples traipsing through the woods could, quite naturally, encounter one man playing a drum kit and another man barbecuing. The film is separated by title cards -- some simply documenting the time, some complete non-sequiturs ("A week of four Thursdays"). They come during breaks in the action, and right in the middle of it. They're just as spastic as the movie.
Godard's criticisms on and observations of (then-) modern society are nothing unique -- and one could say that countless Buñuel movies have done it better -- but give the man credit for bitching about the human condition in style. If nothing else, Weekend is worth seeing for one of cinema's greatest tracking shots: An epic traffic jam on a small country road, interrupted by people playing chess between the cars, people making out, and countless other absurdities -- only to find a collection of severed bodies waiting at the end of the line, blocking the way. When an early monologue about a tawdry sex session gets interrupted by the question, "Is this real or a nightmare?," Godard would simply answer, "What's the difference?"
The DVD includes a critic's commentary, plus a few interviews and featurettes about the film.
Aka Week End.
Run time: 97 mins
In Theaters: Friday 4th November 2011
Box Office USA: $0.5M
Budget: $8 thousand
Distributed by: IFC Films
Production compaines: The Bureau, EM Media, Glendale Picture Company, Synchronicity Films
Contactmusic.com: 4 / 5
Rotten Tomatoes: 95%
Fresh: 73 Rotten: 4
IMDB: 7.7 / 10
Director: Jean-Luc Godard
Producer: Jean-Luc Godard
Screenwriter: Jean-Luc Godard
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