Zero for Conduct

Director: Jean Vigo
Year Released: 1933
Rating: 3.0

A group of elementary-age children stage a kiddie revolt against their instructors, by engaging in pillow fights, pelting them with trash and messing with their beds when they're sleeping. Vigo's sympathies lie with the children, who are clearly revolt-ing, but that's entirely his decision: it feels odd and frightening in the Age of Columbine (as does Anderson's if....) but reflects the discontent with the strictness of the age. As a film, it's bizarre and surreal, if a bit choppy (presumably due to production trouble ... now those kinds of problems are timeless) - like Jean Eustache (another tragedy), it's evident Vigo had talent and would have produced even more amazing films as he got older. For now, we'll just have to cherish the pieces....