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860 Ratings

Here and Elsewhere

Ici et ailleurs

France, 1976


Commissioned by the Arab League to produce a film on the Palestinian Revolution, Godard and Gorin’s plans were upended by the Black September. Godard, now working with Miéville, transformed the original footage into a scathing self-critique—paralleling the lives of a French and a Palestinian family.

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The film that Godard and Miéville would produce in the wake of Until Victory’s failure, released to small and largely hostile audiences in 1976 as Ici et Ailleurs, is a radical, acerbic, and completely remarkable work of deconstructive self-criticism, and if it’s not remembered as a great film, if it’s indeed remembered at all, it should still stand, for Godard, as an important first step away from propagandistic abstraction and toward a recalibrated, newly reenergized approach to filmmaking.
June 22, 2012
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The marriage of form and upheaval remains dysfunctional, but the film has the elation of hope: When Anne-Marie Miéville’s voice joins in to complement, question, and undercut the Godard-Gorin collage, there is the unmistakable optimism of mutual dialogue trumping proletyzing harangue, and pushing forward.
February 11, 2007
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It’s perhaps the most complex of all of these works [the Dziga Vertov Group films], a stunning reflection on the Palestinian resistance, on the political dimensions of sound and image, and on the failure of European radicalism after 1968… Ici et ailleurs is one of the greatest of all political films, achieving an extraordinary formal density with its layered images, sounds, and histories, as well as a political lucidity that remains all too relevant today.
January 24, 2003
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