Bande à part / Band of Outsiders

Band of Outsiders serves as the perfect introduction to the work of the seminal
artist credited here as “Jean-Luc Cinéma Godard.” The film puts the leading
New Wave director’s love of B-movies and detective novels front and center,
with the story of a heist carried off by the unlikely trio of two shiftless Paris
guys and the moony au pair they both love, but is at its most exhilarating with its
famous “digressions”: the legendary line dance in a Paris café or the whirlwind
trip to the Louvre, in which the trio break the record for the fastest museum
visit. Along with this constant playfulness, the film’s mix of youthful ebullience
and romantic tragedy, its interplay between the gritty black and white images
of Paris and Godard’s poetic voiceover, and the thrilling moments in which the
camera seems to break with the narrative to capture the young actors’ very
essence create a particularly enjoyable primer in the art of the New Wave, as
well as Godard’s most accessible film. Made as a gift to his wife and muse
Anna Karina to help her out of a period of depression, Band of Outsiders has
a buoyancy that would soon be replaced by the sharper critique and harder
edges of Godard’s political films of the late sixties. Also starring the boisterous
Claude Brasseur and intense Sami Frey, Band of Outsiders is an unforgettable
ode to youth, Paris, and cinema.

Jean-Luc Godard

Jean-Luc Godard

Anna Karina
Sami Frey
Claude Brasseur

Crime, Romance, Drama
97 min.
France, 1964

Rialto Pictures

$350 – DVD
$450 – DCP