Godard’s seventh film, Bande à part (1964), is a return to small-budget filmmaking after his experience of shooting Le mépris (1963) on location in Italy with big names stars. The first thing that struck me while watching the film (for the second time) was that it is the complete opposite of his previous film. Bande à part is shot in black and white and features Anna Karina as Odile, a somewhat old-fashioned woman who becomes involved with a couple of petty thieves played by Claude Brasseur and Sami Frey. After meeting one of the thieves in English class, Odile reveals that she lives in the suburbs of Paris with her aunt and a mysterious man who is hoarding a stash of cash. This sparks the thieves’ interest and before long they are hatching a plan to steal the loot. While waiting for the right moment to carry out their plan, the threesome engage in a number of
activities, such as performing the Madison (a popular dance at the time) in a Parisian café or beating the American tourist’s record for “doing” the Louvre in under 10 minutes. These are the moments that make the film memorable, rather than the convoluted plot, and they have become some of the most beloved sequences in any of Godard’s films.