See only at the Castro Theatre, not available online.
In this wry, arthouse dark comedy, director Amartya Bhattacharyya pays homage to and draws inspiration from his favorite filmmaker, the legendary auteur Jean-Luc Godard and his early 1960s French New wave films.
The elderly Ananda lives in a small village in the rural backdrop of Odisha in northeastern India. He has the reputation of being the village pervert for his obsession with porn, buying DVDs from a local seller and organizing frequent viewing parties with his friends, while ignoring the visible disdain of his wife and daughter. Things go awry for Ananda when his supplier, in a comical mistake, gives him a DVD of Godard’s Breathless, branding it as a “French pornographic film.”
Ignoring his friends’ derision for the lack of nudity and sex, with Breathless, Ananda grows enamored with Godard films, so much so that he decides to hold a film festival of Godard’s films in the village.
Adieu Godard provides a critical commentary on the conventions of commercial cinema.
Bhattacharyya’s narrative technique of Godard vs. porn sets up the debate of cinema as an artistic medium vs. cinema as a distraction from daily menial drudgery. It also ponders the idea of where appreciation of art originates, and how it may not be constrained by the boundaries of socioeconomic class.