A Godard film that is actually engaging is a rare thing – rare enough that I get annoyed because it means I have to concede that the man can occasionally make decent films. So why does A Married Woman work where his other films don’t? Simple; actual care and thought has been taken into the writing of the characters, rather than just a hodgepodge of references, quotes and idle thoughts. They feel like people rather than ciphers for Godard’s opinions, and he treats them as such. It also helps that A Married Woman is exquisitely shot and framed with intelligence; the rule-breaking is still here, but it’s in service of expressing the characters and ideas rather than Godard’s pontifications about nothing in particular. There are still moments where his ego traipses over the film’s otherwise carefully-laid flowerbed, but they are rare enough that I can overlook it in this case.