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Odile (Anna Karina) meets would-be criminals Arthur (Claude Brasseur) and Franz (Sami Frey) in an English language class. At some point, she tells Franz that there is a large amount of money stashed in the villa where she lives with her Aunt Victoria and a certain Mr. Stoltz in Joinville near Paris; and Franz and Arthur persuade her to assist them in staging a robbery in her own home.
Meanwhile, both Franz and Arthur try to seduce Odile, with Arthur being the more successful.
Unfortunately, Arthur's uncle somehow learns of their plot and wants to commit the robbery himself. This forces Franz, Arthur, and Odile to rush into the robbery faster than they would have liked. Moreover, by this time, Mr. Stoltz has grown suspicious of Odile's behavior, has hidden his money, and has changed the locks on all the doors.
When they arrive, Franz and Arthur tie up Odile's Aunt Victoria and stash her in an armoire. They only find a small amount of cash on hand, and when they return to threaten Aunt Victoria further, they find that she is no longer breathing. They decide to flee the scene as soon as possible, but after they are on their way Arthur returns alone on the pretext of verifying that Victoria is, in fact, dead.
In fact, having realized that most of the money had been hidden in the doghouse, Arthur plans to take it all for himself. Driving along the highway, Franz sees Arthur's uncle heading in the direction of the villa, so he and Odile return to the house in time to see Arthur be shot by his uncle and shoot his uncle in return. At this point, Mr. Stoltz arrives and snatches up his money, and Aunt Victoria (who we presume was playing dead) rushes out of the house.
Odile and Franz take their money and buy passage on a ship to South America. The movie ends with the promise of a sequel chronicling Odile and Franz' adventures in America.
Bande à part is a 1964 Nouvelle vague film directed by Jean-Luc Godard. It was released as Band of Outsiders in North America; its French title derives from the phrase faire bande à part, which means "to do something apart from the group."
The film is an adaptation of the novel Fools' Gold (Doubleday Crime Club, 1958) by American author Dolores Hitchens (1907–1973).
The film belongs to the French New Wave movement. Godard described it as "Alice in Wonderland meets Franz Kafka"
A minute of silence: In one scene, Arthur, Franz, and Odile are in a crowded café and decide to observe a minute of silence; as they do so the film's soundtrack is plunged into complete silence. This silence actually lasts only 36 seconds and is interrupted by Franz, who says "Enough of that."
The Madison scene: Shortly after, Odile and Arthur decide to dance. Franz joins them as they perform a dance routine. The music is R&B or soul music composed for the film by Michel Legrand, but Anna Karina said the actors called it "the Madison dance." This scene influenced the dance scene with Uma Thurman and John Travolta in Quentin Tarantino's Pulp Fiction. (A further Tarantino connection is in the name of his film production company, A Band Apart.) It also influenced scenes in Hal Hartley's Simple Men and Martin Hynes' The Go-Getter The entire dance scene was also used as the music video for the song "Dance with Me", by the music group Nouvelle Vague from their 2006 album Bande à Part. The group took their name from a scene in the movie, where Odile and Arthur are walking on a street and pass a business with Nouvelle Vague (New Wave or New Trend) in large letters over the door. They also named their 2006 album after the title of this film.
The Louvre scene: In one scene, the characters attempt to break the world record for running through the Louvre. And the narration informs that their time was nine minutes and 43 seconds which broke the record set by Jimmy Johnson of San Francisco. That scene is referenced in Bernardo Bertolucci's The Dreamers (2003), in which its characters break the Louvre record.
Bande à part is often considered one of Godard's most accessible films; Amy Taubin of the Village Voice called it "a Godard film for people who don't much care for Godard". Its accessibility has endeared the film to a broader audience. For example, it was the only Godard film selected for Time Magazine's All-TIME 100 movies.
Noted critic Pauline Kael described Bande à part as "a reverie of a gangster movie" and "perhaps Godard's most delicately charming film".
Ranked #79 in Empire magazines "The 100 Best Films Of World Cinema" in 2010.
Source : Wikipedia