Criterion Year Week 27: The Rules of The Game

The Criterion Collection, the last vestige of truly collectible DVD and Blu-Ray movies in existence. These are well produced, fancy pants editions of important and interesting films for the discerning film lover.

We continue our journey through Jim's collection of movies with...

The Rules of the Game

Spine Number: 216

Director: Jean Renoir

Genre: The most French of French

Before we even get started let me say one thing. We neither understood nor cared for this film at all. It just did nothing. We tried, and it wouldn't meet us halfway. So if you're worried about having to see this first... don't sweat it. We kind of tap dance around it.

Few films have ever come with a more daunting and lofty pedigree than Jean Renoir's "The Rules of The Game." For several decades Sight and Sound Magazine has published a list of what are considered the best films ever made. For ages Citizen Kane has held the top position. However,  before Kane's ascension, what film was considered the "greatest film of all time?"

This one was. Jean Renoir's comedy of manners that is said to contain a "scathing critique of corrupt French society."

Something must have been lost in translation. Cut to the chase... we didn't really care for it. Well, maybe that's not the right way to put it. This thing made little to no sense. Perhaps there is a greater base of knowledge about French society on the eve of World War II. But, as it stands... we didn't consider this to be a good movie. Yes, it looks good, and there is most certainly something going on behind the scenes that we are just not familiar with, but... honestly. It doesn't translate.

But what we found was... that's ok. It's fine to not love a movie that is held up as a classic. As long as there is some thought going into your critique and you aren't just disagreeing to disagree, it's completely fine to look at something that everyone swears is important and say... eh, not for me.

So, join us in our look at this beloved masterpiece and our discussion of why dissent is just fine.

Next Week:

Spine number 221: Ikiru

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Thanks for listening, and until next week...

Jim out.

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