French New Wave

You can talk Star Wars and Scarface for days—but are you fluent in French New Wave? For a primer on the genre that will score you more conversation points with girls (or guys) who wear glasses, check out our previous post on the topic—and to rep your favorite Jean-Luc Godard film wherever you go, pick up the Vivre Sa Vie snapback seen above.

It’s one of three custom New Era hats brought in exclusively for our French Fling Pop-In Shop. The title of the 1962 film translates directly as To Live Her Life, but it was released to American audiences as My Life to Live—an aptly self-assured headwear sentiment whether you’re lightening the vibe at a cheese tasting or out-classing your friends in a game of pick-up basketball.

We’ll gloss over the seedy details of the film’s plot line (no spoilers!), but do check out the classic jukebox scene in the clip above—and keep watching until the end, for a pick-up line that would never work in a million years. Unless, maybe, you’re French. Or wearing a great hat. But still, we don’t recommend it.

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To purchase a top-of-the-line edition of Vivre Sa Vie on DVD or Blu-Ray—and for more in-depth film reviews, essays, and photo galleries than you can shake a baguette at—visit The Criterion Collection.

 

SHOP ALL:
FRENCH FLING POP-IN SHOP 
MEN’S HATS 

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You wouldn’t believe how much useful information we gathered last week. (For a brief glimpse at the whirlwind tour of menswear design studios we conducted in New York and LA, check our Men’s Shop Instagram feed.)

We learned how pouring concrete pertains to achieving the perfect lapel roll. We found out why real men aren’t afraid of emoticons. And we nabbed some tips on which 1960s films to Netflix posthaste. (Three guesses which perennial favorite men’s brand is named after a 1964 Jean-Luc Godard film…)

Watch for much more on the topics above, and more, in the weeks ahead. But for now, a brief crash course on French New Wave—an informal cinematic movement of the 1950s and ’60s, whose progenitors embodied the “social and political upheavals of the era,” and in which “radical experiments with editing, visual style and narrative” imply a “general break with the conservative paradigm.” (Thanks, Wikipedia.) Here are a couple trailers from Godard films, which, like the films themselves, play more as a series of sensations than a traditional narrative arc:

…A circa-1963 interview with the elusive director himself:

…And testimonials from the good people at Criterion Collection (who are “dedicated to gathering the greatest films from around the world and publishing them in editions that offer the highest technical quality and award-winning, original supplements”):

Check out some of these films if you haven’t already—if nothing else, for tips on what kind of girl to date (if you want to end up dead).

 

Further Reading: For more classic films—plus top-10 lists from A-list directors and actors, and a massive compendium of film essays ranging from esoteric (Naked Lunch: Drifting In and Out of a Kafkaesque Reality) to just plain awesome (Martin Scorsese on Wes Anderson’s Bottle Rocket)—visit the official Criterion Collection website.

 
 

[Images via Criterion.com. Individuals pictured do not endorse Nordstrom.]

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