|Directed by||Jean-Luc Godard|
|Produced by||Alain Sarde
|Written by||Jean-Luc Godard|
|May 19, 2004|
Notre musique (Our Music) is a 2004 film directed by Jean-Luc Godard. The film reflects on violence, morality, and the representation of violence in film, and touches especially on past colonialism and the current Israeli-Palestinian conflict. It was screened out of competition at the 2004 Cannes Film Festival.
The film is divided into three parts inspired by the Divine Comedy of Dante. "Realm 1: Hell" is a relatively brief, non-narrative montage composed of appropriated documentary and narrative fictional footage depicting war, carnage, and violence.
The second segment, "Realm 2: Purgatory", makes up the bulk of the film. Godard, playing himself, is waiting at the airport to depart to a European arts conference in Sarajevo. There he meets Ramos Garcia, a nationalized French Israeli, who is going to the conference as an interpreter. Ramos is looking forward to seeing his niece at the conference, Olga Brodsky, a French-speaking Jew of Russian descent. Another young woman at the conference, Judith Lerner, a journalist from Tel Aviv, visits the French ambassador and entreats him to have an on-the-record conversation about jewish-Palestinian relations ("not a just conversation; just a conversation"). Later she interviews the poet Mahmoud Darwish, who says that the Palestinian struggle defines Israel. In between these encounters, Judith surveys the city, and visits the Mostar bridge, where she reads Emmanuel Levinas (Entre Nous).
Meanwhile, Olga attends Godard's lecture, ostensibly about the relationship between image and text. In addition to touching on a variety of other topics, Godard explains his opposition to the common cinematic trope of "shot/reverse shot," the cutting back and forth between two characters in a conversation or an exchange. Godard explains that presenting two characters in such a way, framed identically, regressively effaces their differences, and can be used as a tool of propaganda. Later Olga meets with her uncle Ramos, and discusses with him the philosophical problem of suicide.
After the conference, Godard is back home, watering his garden. He gets a call from Ramos Garcia, who tells Godard about a young woman who ran into a theater and declared she had a bomb in her bag. She asked for one person to die with her for Irsaeli-Palestinian peace; everyone left the theater. The police came and shot her. When they opened her bag, all they found were books. Garcia tells Godard that he is sure it was Olga.
In "Realm 3: Heaven," a brief postlude, Olga wanders contemplatively through an idyllic lakeside setting that appears to be guarded by American marines.
The film received generally positive reviews from critics. The review aggregator Rotten Tomatoes reported that 65% of critics gave the film positive reviews, based on 52 reviews. Metacritic reported the film had an average score of 77 out of 100, based on 19 reviews.
Awards and nominations
- European Film Awards
- Nominated: Best Actress (Sarah Adler)
- Nominated: Best Screenwriter (Jean-Luc Godard)
- San Sebastián Film Festival (Spain)
- Won: FIPRESCI Film of the Year (Jean-Luc Godard)
- "Festival de Cannes: Notre musique". festival-cannes.com. Retrieved 2009-12-05.
- "Notre Musique - Movie Reviews, Trailers, Pictures - Rotten Tomatoes". Rotten Tomatoes. Retrieved 2008-02-06.
- "Notre Musique (2004): Reviews". Metacritic. Retrieved 2008-02-06.