My Life to Live (It's My Life) (Vivre sa vie: Film en douze tableaux)
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My Life to Live (It's My Life) (Vivre sa vie: Film en douze tableaux)
Vivre Sa Vie presents 12 episodes in the life of a young woman who turns to prostitution to pay her rent. Each episode features a theatrical scene preceded by a title that lists the characters in the episode, its location, and a brief summary of the action. As he would throughout his career, director Jean-Luc Godard uses prostitution as a metaphor for both economic life in general and the position of the filmmaker under capitalism. Vivre Sa Vie stars Anna Karina, who was married to Godard at the time. Her performance was largely improvised as Godard refused to give Karina her lines until just… More
Rotten Tomatoes Score: 93%

Critic Reviews from Rotten Tomatoes

"Godard frames and edits his shots, moves the camera, uses music, and deploys his actors in ways that still seem radical -- even as several generations of directors since have cribbed and stolen from him."
‑ Steven Rea, Philadelphia Inquirer
"Star Anna Karina was in the brutal early rounds of marriage to her director, who was never more doting and egghead-condescending than in this showpiece."
‑ Nick Pinkerton, Village Voice
"To Live Her Life is, to this very early point in his career, Godard's crowning achievement."
‑ Dan Jardine, Cinemania
"A fine example of Godard's experimental affronts to cinematic conventions, his exploration of the human condition, and his concern for social issues. [Blu-ray]"
‑ Peter Canavese, Groucho Reviews
"On the one hand it's a provocative portrait of social and sexual politics... on the other a moralistic tale of a shallow, emotionally reckless young woman..."
‑ Sean Axmaker,
"Godard mixes titles, unusual use of sound, and long scenes of dialog. He is brilliantly served by his wife, Anna Karina, in this film. Karina gives the girl a ring of truth and depth."
‑ Variety Staff, Variety
"This 1962 film isn't the most stimulating of Godard's early work, but it does show him beginning to pull away from traditional cutting patterns and sequence arrangement."
‑ Dave Kehr, Chicago Reader
"truly exhilarating"
‑ Jay Antani, Cinema Writer
"contains the best of Godard, both the intellectual and the emotional"
‑ James Kendrick, Q Network Film Desk
"Jean Luc-Godard's third feature fuses trademark stylistic playfulness with a stark portrait of the dehumanising nature of capitalist society."
‑ Tom Dawson, Total Film
"Jean-Luc Godard's fourth film is a heartfelt, headstrong attempt to push his own concept of a deconstructed cinema even further into the stratosphere."
‑ David Fear, Time Out New York
"Twelve Brechtian tableaux chronicle the life and death of a whore, starting out as a documentary on prostitution, ending as a Monogram B movie."
‑ Tom Milne, Time Out
"Godard's ode to a hooker remains a bleak, sexy and heartbreaking work of art"
‑ Corey Hall, Metro Times (Detroit, MI)
"If we were to reduce all of world cinema to just a dozen images, Karina's perfect, pensive face would have to be among them."
‑ Christopher Long, Movie Metropolis
"You can see now what Bernard Rose, Mike Figgis, Lars von Trier and all the other DV-fixated filmmakers are striving for; they're trying to reclaim the freedom, the weightlessness, of cinema. Bravo to them."
‑ Ryan Gilbey, Observer [UK]