From the Chicago Reader (January 1, 1998). — J.R.
Jean-Luc Godard takes on the Bosnian war in this 1997 French-Swiss production, broken into four segments: “Theater,” “You Don?t Fool With Love in Sarajevo,” “A Film About In-Tranquillity,” and “For Ever Mozart.” No Godard film is devoid of interest, and all his work (with the arguable exception of some of his post-’68 efforts, like Un film commes les autres) is worth seeing, but this treatment of war as bad theater and the vicissitudes of the film business strikes me as being his least-inspired feature since the late 60s. Working with a cast of unknowns who are encouraged not to outshine one another, and staging bits of Bosnian warfare on property that belonged to his late grandparents in Switzerland, he makes his isolation and his distance from his contemporary subjects more of an issue this time. An erotically framed, beautifully lit female torso in a doorway, imitating a Bosnian corpse, points to where some of the problems lie. The unidiomatic title, by the way, is a somewhat forced bilingual pun that can also be read as “pour rever Mozart,” i.e., “to dream Mozart.”