French New Wave, the first step towards the Indie Cinema movement
Nowadays, enthusiastic people are aware of independent cinemas and how indie filmmakers are making a difference in their genre of creativity. Whether Europe, Asia, or America, every continent has its specific touches of filmmaking and originality. But historically, France showed us the way of independent films back in the late 1950s.
The challenges that today’s filmmakers take against the mainstream media and traditional cinema styles were pioneered by French film directors like François Truffaut, Jean-Luc Godard, Éric Rohmer, and Jacques Rivette. They refused to walk on the conventional French mainstream movies and explored the new methodologies of direction, cinematography, editing, and visual style.
The directors associated with this film movement termed a new phrase for the filmmaking thesaurus – Auteur Theory. It denotes that all filmmakers have their unique work style, and that touch will help the audience find whose work this is. At the same time, budding indie filmmakers should have their signature move to be present in the outcomes to help find them recognition.
The French New Wave always emphasized the importance of storytelling rather than producing movies for monetary collections and box-office calculations. The film movement had its magazine, ‘Cahiers du Cinéma,’ where all the exceptional works and discussions were published by the group of directors related to the new wave.
According to many experts, the French New Wave was inspired by Italian Neorealism, the film movement that started in Italy in the 1940s. It showed us how to make movies based on real-life situations and portray the occurrences of our society and people. The best films produced in Italian Neorealism, like ‘The Bicycle Thief,’ ‘La Strada’, ‘The Roof’, are still illustrations of how we should use the everyday happenings in our films rather than making films following the patterns of the mainstream media houses!
French New Wave showed today’s filmmakers the importance of choosing real-life incidents as the subject of films, interpreting stories that are well connected to the people, and most importantly, the unique style that every director should have in their direction works.
As independent directors, novice people often search for inspiration or standards they should follow while making a film, and French New Wave has components to guide them. For instance, the long shot at the end of the movie ‘400 Blows’ was one of the pioneering shots to be used in all film genres, so the independent cinemas tried to be unique in their nature.
In this contemporary entertainment world, it is challenging to stand a name in the competition and overflow of content produced by filmmakers worldwide. But if anyone follows the footsteps of the New Wave, it would be easier to make a movie that really matters and can easily attract the audience’s eyeballs.
Another critical thing to learn from these legendary filmmakers of the French New Wave is how to make films on a small budget! The independent directors’ most significant challenge is getting money to produce the film. Still, directors like Truffaut and Godard proved that a minor monetary status is sufficient to make a masterpiece if the thinking and techniques are good.
In the 21st Century world, we are getting films from independent filmmakers who are good in qualitative nature and also have some ‘Auteur Style’ to follow! This way, we should keep up the good work to pay homage to the great pioneers of the French New Wave.