The paper explores how the French New Wave radically altered cinematic notions on film style and film storytelling.
French New Wave films were essentially narrative films; however, the movement is linked to the production of some of the most perplexing, irregular narratives that film viewers have witnessed since Surrealist filmmaking. At the time, causal connections started to become loose as demonstrated by how Michel, the hero of breathless, behaves. In addition, the films lack goal-oriented protagonists, whereby the heroes drift aimlessly, and engage in actions on the spur of the moment. French New Wave narratives frequently introduce staggering changes in a tone, which shocks the expectations of the viewers (Lanzoni 2008, p.3).
In Breathless, the hero, Michel’s comic monologue in the first scene as he drives along a road yields directly into the brutal murder of a policeman. The discontinuous editing of the film further disrupts the narrative continuity; moreover, French New Wave film characteristically ends ambiguously. The French New Wave approach of independent financing of low-budget films availed an effective solution to declining cinema attendance and declining cash budget. French New Wave directors mainly documented films quickly and cheaply compared to other directors. Furthermore, young directors aided each other, which largely minimized the financial risk by the established companies.
The “Nouvelle Vague” (French New Wave) represents a movement within the French film sector that gained prominence in late 1950s and 1960s. French New Wave heralded new blood and revitalized France’s already cinematic scene, and altered almost every aspect of filmmaking and ushered in youthful film makers. The new movement provided a platform to alter the rules directing storytelling while at the same time