Hail Mary

Director: Jean-Luc Godard
Year Released: 1985
Rating: 2.0

Hold on a minute: you mean to tell me that this got condemned by the Pope and raised a ruckus when it was released? That makes about as much sense as condemning a lecture by Ferdinand de Saussure, but it goes to show how touchy all religions react to non-sanctimonious representations of their myths. JLG does his usual JLG thing, dismantling the Birth of Christ narrative, relocating it to modern-day France, having Mary a high school basketball player and Joseph a gas station attendant, dicing up the scenes and tossing in some classical music (he does that irritating stop-start thing, too: begin the piece, then quickly turn it off). Like most of his 80's work it's perfectly watchable, though teleporting the Virgin Mary story to 'modern times' doesn't yield to an exactly revolutionary rethink of the tale, making me personally wonder why he chose to make this particular film except as a kind of simplistic joke. Today, only the Committee to Ban the Exposure of Thick Pubic Hair on Screen would have any objection to this.