A movement in art is a reaction to the “changes in psychology produced by changes in the social environment” (Bagulaya 2006, citing Leon Trotsky). Art form therefore changes as a corollary to alterations in the environmental and material conditions of society. Such conceptualization parallels the base-superstructure relationship, wherein “art...is part of the superstructure” (Eagleton 1976). Art then is not an autonomous product, removed from its social context. It production is partly determined by relations prevailing in a societ
The film then may be construed as a reaction to the “persistent continuation of gender inequality.” That being said, Hiroshima is an arena where the ramifications in the French society, the political motives of the auteurs, and the status quo are reconciled.
O. P. Imbat
The movie is a symbolic love story meshed with the gruesome bombing of the city of Hiroshima. On the facade the film has a very straightforward plot. A French actress Elle is in Hiroshima because of a movie about peace. There she meets a Lui, a Japanese architect with whom she had a one night stand. Even though both of them are married they find themselves falling in love with one another. Since they are both married they understand that romance is doomed. Significantly, Elle has been in the same situation before with a German soldier. In the movie Elle was relating her first love to Lui and the consequences of it; in this regard it highlights a single contrast between the past and the present. The movie seeks to present more than this that it implies parallels between joy/despair and society/individual. The analysis of this dimension of the films opens up to a much wider scope of interpretation of conflict to whether it is best to realise true desire for an instant, rather than never having been presented with the temptation in the first place.
Hiroshima Mon Amour also deals with contrasts and opposites such as love and death, war and peace, living and remembering, as well as dealing with two people from different parts of the world: one from France and one from Japan. The overall theme of the movie was that of torture and exorcism, it is the painful knowledge that eventually all shared moments will be forgotten no matter how resonant they may be. Then with the dissipation of memory, our very substance would be affected. This is a terrifying thought but there are at least illuminations in the obscurity of the situation.
With her confusion behind them, the enigmatic yes-no, stay-go relationship between Elle and Lui continues into the wee hours of the morning, with each trying to say their final farewells, but wandering the streets of Hiroshima instead, only to find themselves at an all night café, which by no coincidence is called Casablanca. There, it becomes painfully obvious that their ill-timed and ill-fated love was never to be. At long last, back in her hotel room, their agony is ended, but not resolved, with the dawn. The essence of the movie was that the thought of in love and in war, we must never forget. We must remember things even though we never wish to remember them. Because it is by these memories we are constituted of.
So much has been written about Hiroshima Mon Amour since its induction into the history of cinema. The film has been reviewed and analyzed by critics, scholars and filmmakers, and has been unanimously recognized as a cinematic milestone and a benchmark by all.