Experimental film maker Gerard Courant has taken Jean-Luc Godard’s Breathless and sped up it (or compressed it as he prefers to call it) into a four minute movie.
The French title of Godard’s debut film is À bout de souffle which translates to English as “out of breath.” Courant’s compression is most likely a play on the title.
What I find interesting about the compression is the way it brings Godard’s style and the American noir films he was inspired by to the foreground. The nervous energy of the film, the pans and tracking shots, cigarettes smoked, automobiles in motion, zooms, jump-cuts, and close-ups, all create an angular yet fluid motion that seems driven by forces of destiny - the movie is tumbling into a dark void of betrayal and its opposite - yin and yanging to the beat beat beat of a heart in the throes of atrial tachycardia. No time to catch your breath - you’re breathless.
Fucking with Godard’s masterpiece is very Godardian.
If, as Godard claims, “cinema is truth at 24 frames per second” what is cinema at 524 frames per second?