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Contempt (Le Mépris) [Blu-ray]

81 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Legendary director Jean-Luc Godard’s CONTEMPT is a movie within a movie – on the surface, the film is about a director (Michel Piccoli) whose wife Camille (Brigitte Bardot) falls out of love with him while he is rewriting an adaptation of Homer’s ODYSSEY for an American producer (Jack Palance). But underneath this tragic tale of a doomed romance lies Godard’s true subject: the commercial film industry, which he shows his CONTEMPT for in a directing performance that is slyly subversive, darkly comic and completely original.

Special Features


Product Details

  • Actors: Brigitte Bardot, Michel Piccoli, Jack Palance, Fritz Lang, Giorgia Moll
  • Directors: Jean-Luc Godard
  • Format: Multiple Formats, Blu-ray, Color, Dolby, Dubbed, NTSC, Subtitled, Widescreen
  • Language: English, French, Spanish
  • Subtitles: Spanish
  • Dubbed: English, Spanish
  • Region: Region A/1 (Read more about DVD/Blu-ray formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 2.35:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: NR (Not Rated)
  • Studio: Lions Gate
  • DVD Release Date: February 16, 2010
  • Run Time: 103 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (81 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B002ZG4Q66
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #73,009 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

58 of 61 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on December 30, 2002
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
Criterion does it again. A wonderful, fascinating 1963 film rescued from terrible, faded prints and murky video transfers and made to look - like Criterion's equally outstanding refurbishment of Fellini's "Juliet of the Spirits" - almost like a brand-new movie; as clean and as beautiful as I have ever seen it. Not everyone will "get" what Jean-Luc Godard is up to with "Contempt", and some will get it but still not care for it - fair enough. He never claimed to be making movies for every audience any more than he claimed to be making them for rarefied elites, nevertheless a broad spectrum of us do understand and appreciate his artistic project (of which this is one sublime outcome), and if you can suspend for two hours the narrow, conventional expectations Hollywood product has cultivated in many of us, that number may include you. Robert Stam's alternate-channel audio commentary provides many interesting insights regarding the significance and filmmaking innovations of "Contempt", along with superb analysis of the sources of the story (in Homer and recent Italian literature) and the performances, and some information regarding how the movie came to be cast and produced, which goes a long way toward explaining why Godard made the movie he eventually made. "Contempt" may be Godard's most "conventional" film, but then art is not only about innovation, but also about mastery. If the performances are not always so subtle they are nevertheless wonderfully nuanced, including that of the great director (and non-actor) Fritz Lang, and Brigitte Bardot - still at the apogee of her Gallic voluptuousness - reveals a depth unimagined by those quick to dismiss her bathtub sex kitten persona - not to mention, most of her legendarily beautiful naked body, in Technicolor and CinemaScope.Read more ›
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54 of 61 people found the following review helpful By Addisson DeWitt on June 21, 2010
Format: Blu-ray Verified Purchase
This is,without a doubt, one of the best films ever made by Godard and his cinematographer, Raoul Coutard.
The Criterion Collection transfer is impeccable - sharp focus, well-balanced primary colors, great sound.
The Blue-ray disc (not from Criterion but Lionsgate's Studio Canal label) is a major disappointment on just about every level - especially with the color levels. There appears to be a yellowish cast to everything. No hard reds, blues, yellows or greens.
Skin tones are dull and gray. It seems to have been made from completely different elements, with no reference to the original intent, or even the Coutard approved transfer.
At least it was not panned and scanned, about the only thing in it's favor.
If you have the Criterion version already - keep it.
The "up grade" to Blu-Ray is NOT an improvement.
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29 of 31 people found the following review helpful By andy7 on March 17, 2002
Format: DVD
One of Brigitte Bardot's few high brow films is an amazing modern Space Age parable of the Homer's "Odyssey" in which innocuous writer Michel Piccoli allows sleazy creep producer Jack Palance (his best film, hands down) have his way with wife BB...she feels nothing but contempt for Piccoli for his apathy... I'm with her...the screenplay to the proposed film is supposed to be about the death of romance between Ulysses and Penelope in Homer's "Odyssey", but life imitates art when the romance between BB and Piccoli rots away due to Piccoli's wimpy attitude toward Palance's lecherous advances towards his wife...then again, Palance clearly reperesents commerce......
This is a superior film to "Breathless", IMHO, .. the film is total eye candy, if not due to the awesome BB, then by the gorgeous locations...
Godard really deserves more credit, he's a consummate filmmaker......Breathless, Alphaville, First Name Carmen, Band of Outsiders...
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22 of 25 people found the following review helpful By Andrea Choe on September 26, 2004
Format: DVD
Camille: "Then you love me totally."

Paul: "I love you totally, tenderly, tragically."

Such is the story of Camille and Paul, whose lives we watch slowly unravel in tender tragedy. This is a movie to be watched and to be felt; to be understood by the part of you that has struggled to change an unchangeable love or the part of you that has felt the urge to desecrate your own life simply out of restless need to feel something new or understand something raw.

To begin with, Godard takes insoluble feelings of love/hate/restlessness/desire/contempt and weaves it under a thin layer of lives, which as you watch, cannot be seen directly but is clearly felt. He foregoes standard cinematic technique/storytelling criteria as he drops changing color filters over Bardot's introductory nude scene and compares the raging emotions of man against the widescapes of the still ocean and skies (as is seen in particularly breathtaking shots rotating around Greek statues with eyes painted in bright red against a backdrop of bluish white skies and a tortuous finale to which Godard himself yells "Silence!" and cuts to the motionless sea).

On top of this, the musical score done by Georges Delerue has been called the most beautiful score ever heard. It is repeated throughout the movie and it comes and goes unpredictably, like the asthmatic attacks that life often unveils at times not necessarily warranted. Altogether, this movie is an honest replication of feelings that course through all of us during the best of times and the worst of times.
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Topic From this Discussion
Let's talk transfer
It's very good. I think it's worth owning. here's the review from
Feb 16, 2012 by Michael Dobey |  See all 2 posts
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