Le Petit Soldat, Jean-Luc Godard (1963)

Less exciting and delightful than Les Carabiniers, due in part to the fact that this film is so much more convoluted. Convoluted very much on purpose, of course, since this is Godard’s version of a political thriller, and he wants us to feel as exhausted as he is by the machinations of the powerful. Political intrigue, here, is not particularly intriguing; it consists mainly of driving around in heavy traffic, trying to find an address. The scene where the “hero” is tortured must have resonated strongly in France in 1963, during the Algerian war, as it should today in the USA of Camp X-Ray and Abu Ghraib. A fine example, in both form and content, of the banality of evil.

Le Petit Soldat at IMDb


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