Liberty and Homeland(2002)
The title of this twenty-minute video by Jean-Luc Godard and Anne-Marie Miéville, “Freedom and Fatherland,” is the official slogan of the Canton de Vaud, in Switzerland, where the filmmakers live and grew up. To fulfill their commission from a Swiss cultural festival, they adapted a great Swiss novel, “Aimé Pache, Painter from the Vaud,” by Charles Ferdinand Ramuz, from 1911 (about a local artist who goes to Paris for his education and then returns home) and extruded its autobiographical analogies to Godard’s own life and work. Using a choice set of clips from Godard’s films to coincide with events from the painter’s life, verbal references to modern times and to Godard’s own—Sartre, the late nineteen-sixties, the cinema—and images of the Swiss terrain, which plays a decisive role in the work of Pache, Godard, and Miéville (an important filmmaker in her own right), they produce the effect of mirrors within mirrors.
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