Icon | Anna Karina

Icon | Anna Karina

To cut a long story short, what offends me about this adventurer’s film is that it contains no adventure, or this poet’s film, that it contains no poetry. -Jean-Luc Godard

In the delicate strewn out act of following we begin to befall our own lost longings, our own dredged up meaning of an exchange worth having. Jean-Luc Godard created a language in cinema that has yet to be completely comprehended. In all forms of genius reverie, it will likely leave the world in a dust of blurred visions. His highly theoretical and political cinematic images have thru lines that are abruptly shifted and broken with every breath. French New Wave filmmakers have drenched the celluloid world with their influence in the magnitude of unforeseen spells they have cast.

Godard met Anna Karina early in his career and fell madly for her beauty that was inseparable from her talent. He proceeded to cast her in his most famous films that have an endless quality in their stark images and sublime story lines. In every role, you feel the slip of Anna and her elected character as paper thin. The bottomless expression in her eyes bestills the lens and the eye behind it. The multiplicity of her gaze is a rare breed that can only be understood as enigmatic chemistry had by her and Godard. She finds herself racing through the Louvre in saddle shoes, apathetically taking up political causes in a pink ruffled dress, dryly weeping in a future world and ceaselessly delivering lines with a barren fragility. Having witnessed her exalted appearances in black and white pleas, we begin to twitch with a knowing that the line of truth and fiction dim into mercurial conclusions of our vanquished hearts.

Images, Upper: Alphaville, 1965 Lower: Band of Outsiders, 1964

Anna Karina Recalls Her Life in Film with Jean-Luc Godard as featured in The New York Times

Anna Karina's Closet Picks at The Criterion Collection

Words by Brit Parks

Shop the Anna Karina Inspired Collection

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