Breathless is Jean-Luc Godard’s first feature length film and a pretty impressive one at that. He was 30 years old and ready to show the world his revolutionary style. François Truffaut helped him write Breathless and went on to have a great career of his own. Godard helped start the French New Wave movement and became one of the most important contributors with this film.
Michel is a young criminal who just does not think before acting. One day he is in Marseilles and decides to steal a car. He thinks he’s hot shit, but he makes multiple stupid decisions at the beginning of the film, including killing a police officer. While Michel is on the run, he decides that he needs to hide somewhere, so he turns to an American love interest named Patricia. They clearly have a connection, but one feels stronger than the other.
Breathless is a very impressive film and I can’t believe it took me this long to check out Godard’s work. Jean-Paul Belmondo and Jean Seberg dominate the screen and they are both spectacular. It’s refreshing to see a character like Patricia have the development that she does. Cinematographer Raoul Coutard teamed up with Godard over and over back in the day and that’s the main reason I’m going to keep watching Godard directed films. Breathless moves with a really cool pace and the camera is just doing things that I need more of. I don’t love the plot or the characters, but I do love the performances and style.