on 1 March 2005
I must say that this is one of the funniest and most disturbing films I've seen in a while.
I got my Jean Luc Goddard film "Weekend" and boy I wasn't disapointed - it's at times disorganised chaos and at times it is almost like a series of films within a film.
There's canabalism, murder, revolutionary speak, road rage, neighbour rage, child rage, a pig killing, political monologs that boggled my brain, a 3 mile or 20 minute plus single take tracking shot (one of the best bits), Death of a goose, rape, over 10,000 degree (in 1 take) tracking shot, disembowelment, the statement : "When Roland drives your Father home from the clinic... it would be nice if they both died in an accident.", a chess game.
I recomend this to anyone with an open mind that leans towards the surrealist avant-garde.
on 30 October 2000
Fight Club wasn't the first movie to take on consumer culture. Godard's last narrative film of the 1960s is a harsh, at times unenjoyable, but always radical and challenging tale of a society mad for money and indifferent to suffering. Turning the usual young-lovers-on-the-run plot used by Godard in Pierrot le Fou and hinted at in A Bout de Souffle, Le Week-End has two lovers who hate each other rushing to the countryside to fight over an inheritance. If the road in classic young lovers' tales - like the contemporaneous Bonnie and Clyde - symbolised freedom, here, cluttered up with wreckage, the road is just another part of a culture where anxieites are bottled up during the week, and let out at the weekend, with violent results. Trademark Godardian intertitles abound, and this film is about as didactic as it gets. Anti-Vietnam slogans may not be contemporaneous, but this film, as an indictment of the new world order, and of consumerism, is more modern than anything currently in cinemas. A classic that's hard to love.
on 13 January 2009
Godard's most approachable and enjoyable film tells the hilarious story of how a Parisian couple spend their weekend. He uses conversation, voice-over - a young woman's half bored, half thrilled account of modern sex in a kitchen with a man whose wife then joins in. There is a suburban parking dispute, French farce style. which concludes with one of the men rushing back into his house, reappearing instantly with a shotgun. The long long obligatory drive into the country has the best and longest traffic jam ever filmed - unforgetably - the camera panning along the line: one family towing a sailing dinghy are putting up the sails. The film is a model of how to tell a story, how to switch from voice to visual slapstick, from reality to fantasy, from petty squabbles to revolutionary idiocy - from Sunday lunch to cannibalism. The whole film is a political parable. The closing surrealist posturing becomes a bit much, but if you haven't an interest in French films you wouldn't be reading this, and if you haven't seen the film, stop wondering, Buy it immediately! It is simply a classic with all faults.
on 29 January 2005
I first saw this aged 17 late night on TV, sound turned down so my parents wouldn't come down and send me to bed. Unfortunately, TV doesn't show films like this any more (not that there are any others) so today's teenagers will mostly miss the opportunity to feel shocked and affronted in the manner of a middle aged vicar. What's difficult is that it's not just viscerally unpleasant but frequently dull and constantly carries an aura of threat that seems to be directed at you the viewer, something along the lines of 'When the revolution comes, you'll be first up against the wall, you bourgeois pig.' - a still pertinent message, though not one we get to hear so much these days. Having decided he doesn't care what you think (an early onscreen text reads 'A film found on a scrapheap'), Godard can do anything he wants and does, resulting in one of the most visually inventive films of all time. There are musical sequences, figures from history and literature, long political disquisitions, virtuoso tracking shots, gunfights, miracles, readings from children's books, random onscreen texts and, as a defining motif, car crashes. After you get past the essentially superstitious feeling that the film is actually threatening to your life, there's really so very much to enjoy. Give yourself a very special treat.
on 24 October 2006
I think that the other commentators have failed to fully understand the movie. I believe that it is a metaphor for the collapse of bourgeois (capitalist) society and works by explaining what will come of that society under standard marxist analysis.
They begin their journey, self-absorbed, greedy, murderous, horrid. They go through the rat-race of traffic along the way. They end up getting robbed, losing their car crashing it and wandering lost. All hope of returning is gone. They end up arrested by the revolutionaries (the dictatorship of the proletariat), suffer cultural re-education (to the extent that the female character eats the male one). The role of the Algerian and African characters are important in that they represent the positivity of the third-world leadership which Jean Luc Godard revered so much. The movie is a very hard Maoist metaphor.
The movie itself is well shot, thought-provoking and harsh. It is meant to reflect the harshness of this world and the director's belief in how that system will be overthrown.
on 8 August 2011
Weekend (J.-L. Godard), F 1967
When Corinne and Roland hit the road in their flashy Facel Vega to kill Corinne's parents (secretly planning to kill the other later) they run among others into an endless traffic jam and a guerilla to witness the end of civilization. Godard's last traditional movie until 1980 is a Cassandra against uninhibited materialism and future Pol Pots.
on 14 August 2014
One of the most essential, challenging, brave and provocative films ever made from the legend French director. This can be difficult to watch, confusing, bizarre, but actually a very intelligent, engaging film about consumerism, politics, society and still very relevant ever since it was made decades ago now.
on 22 June 2015
I sent it back and got a refund as it was scratched to pieces. The film I've seen before on the Criterion blu, which is amazing. One of Godard's best. I can't comment on this dvd,
After watching "Weekend" twice I can only conclude that this film is Godard's personal vision of Hell. Nothing makes sense, there is no love or kindness in the film as one surreal and absurd scene follows the other against a background of burning vehicles, grotesque violence, incongruous music and nonsensical pseudo-philosophical rants. One interpretation of "Weekend" could be that it is simply a parody of French bourgois attitudes and values; its materialism, arrogance and indifference to others are subliminally lampooned throughout the film by Godard as a cast of class warriors, wandering philosophers, car-jackers and cannibal guerrillas expose the vapidity of the consumerist ideal. But to view this film merely as a subversive piece of anarcho/marxist agit-prop is a somewhat tenuous proposition ,as the essential absurdity of the film overwhelms any coherent theme or message that could be drawn from it. Which leads me back to my initial conclusion that "Weekend" must be Godard's imagining of Hell; non-sense, random violence , surreal encounters, illogical actions. "Weekend" is a difficult and challenging film,not particularly entertaining, but most certainly thought-provoking and inventive.
on 5 April 2006
'hmmmmm, now this is bizarre'. My thoughts exactly after watching this film. The non-existent conventions, the rambling monologues, the bitter and vitriolic characters, the plethora of techniques are came together to deliver a film without an apparent statement; artisitic, political or otherwise.
Technically this film is exceptional. It mixes the best of Godard's talents and brings a film that is kinetic and energy-laden at first. However, after the first act; as per usual in Godard films the plot basically halts and utter mayhem ensues. I do not really want to comment on the provocative content, because as many other reviews state it is revolting, repulsive and though-provoking - no more need be said.
Godard's polemics initially concentrate on materialism and consurism; it seems straightforward - then the carnage begins; random turmoil follows and the film then launches attacks on Western foreign policy, on human nature, on society and its foundations, on politics. The message never stops, and it never intends to be clear in its purpose. All that I can personally derive is that its not a meditation, rather a juxtaposation of the worst (or in Godard's view, the truth) of the human world, the human nature. It never redeems the flaws and barbarities of this world; its unshameful in its methods and its visuals.
'Weekend' is a fresh and original cinematic experience. It is very sickening and uncomfortable. Although its leftist wafflings are tiresome and the stagnation of the plot can be infuriating it is still a recommended buy despite its strong devices and content. Though for anyone for really knows and appreciates Godard this film serves as another unforgettable coup-de-maitre from one of the greatest directors who ever worked behind a camera.