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The Grapevine / Re: the house that jack built
« Last post by eward on October 12, 2018, 01:13:41 PM »
Kinda how I feel about Nymphomaniac. And the trailer makes the whole thing seem stylistically very much in that vein. It's kind of a shame - pre-Nymphomaniac, von Trier was really on a roll. He'd likely blame sobriety.
News and Theory / Re: Westerns nowadays
« Last post by Just Withnail on October 12, 2018, 05:31:55 AM »
I was binging on Budd Boetticher's Ranown-cycle a few weeks ago (so easy, as they're all around the divine length of 80 mins). What a master of profound brevity. The emotions of his films always sneak up on you suddenly. I want to sit around a campfire and drink coffee with Randolph Scott. Not say anything.

This interview with philosopher Robert B. Pippin goes into considerable detail about the western and how they dramatize the creation of law from the wilderness, as mention in th Kehr video. He wrote a book on it too:

The Grapevine / Re: Climax
« Last post by Just Withnail on October 12, 2018, 04:33:23 AM »
The first part was really good, I agree. A lot of really suprising choices, whereas the second part strangely became a little one-note, when it's usually in the chaos-parts where Noé really shines. The film felt much less like a gradual descent, as I'd expected, and more like a hard contrasting between the two parts, between extreme bodily movement in the ecstatic dance sequences of the first half, and then in the extreme bodily mutilation of the last half. Some political elements both manage to feel like they're just thrown in there, and unexplored, but still be strangely resonant.
This Year In Film / Re: Mandy
« Last post by Just Withnail on October 12, 2018, 04:17:49 AM »
I had a blast with this - especially the completely bonkers last half.

As the film is starting to pivot into the revenge part, there's this amazing scene where it literally gives Cage a stage to build up his rage freely for a few moments. We see him strolling back and forth in a bathroom in an extended take that is really just there to tell the audience "here it comes", and you get an unobstructed view of Cage pumping up the rage. This film really knows what it is.

It was also of course terribly exciting seeing a close friend doing work as amazing as this, and extremely inspiring.
The Grapevine / Re: the house that jack built
« Last post by Just Withnail on October 12, 2018, 03:47:53 AM »
I had a hard time with this, not really because of any of the supposedly shocking things (that are really only shocking in the context of an arthouse film), but mostly I was just bored. 80% of the film was pretty blandly constructed thriller scenes amounting to little more than "how will he do it this time?". It's at it's best when it's funny (and it's occasionally hilarious) and baroque, but mostly it consists of pretty worn out serial killer tropes. The contextualizing of these do add something, but not enough, I feel.

The film is basically a big confession from von Trier, "this is who I am and there's worth in portraying it". But it adds little new that he hasn't already shown in the other films, except pushing his imagery to new bombastic/pompous/ridiculous/funny heights towards the end, and a feeling that wanting to shock is really a compulsion for him. This both worked for the film (when the compulsion is so blatant it's just funny) and against it (when it wasn't bombastic enough to be interesting and ended up being merely trope'y).

At it's best it's von Trier at his best, at it's worst it's just boring.
News and Theory / Re: Screenings of Interest
« Last post by wilberfan on October 11, 2018, 05:03:05 PM »

All of PTA's features, in the order released, on successive Monday nights.  (Oct 8 thru Nov 26, 2018.)

Astor Theatre, Melbourne

The Small Screen / Re: Forever
« Last post by Sleepless on October 11, 2018, 03:48:29 PM »
Definitely some interesting ideas, but after the repeated, let's say, clean slates of the first two episodes, it loses a lot of momentum and even though it *feels* like the creators have an idea of the larger world they've created and what they want to say, it stalls out with little development by the end of ep 3. Ep6 is a interesting bottle ep though.

Edit: Reading the Collider article about Maniac and Netflix's prevalent issue of bloat/lack of pace seems relevant here. Obviously it's a problem not just in Netflix/streaming, because it's something Walking Dead suffered from years ago too.
The Small Screen / Re: Forever
« Last post by eward on October 11, 2018, 03:02:02 PM »
Ha, that was rather anti-climactic. Your first post made it seem so promising.
The Grapevine / The Other Side of the Wind
« Last post by eward on October 11, 2018, 02:43:44 PM »
EDIT: Whoops! Forgot this thread existed....anyhow


At long last, after years of hearing/reading/dreaming about this film, never believing it would actually see the light of day, yesterday afternoon I had the good fortune to finally, finally see it, on the 33rd anniversary of Welles’ passing, at the Francesca Beale Theater at Lincoln Center, on a brand new 35mm print that had only been screened once before. (God Bless The NYFF). And though it could never truly live up to the hype that had been steadily building in my mind over the years, especially since having read the excellent Josh Karp book about its making, I was very pleased to find myself mostly thoroughly engaged throughout its entire 2 hour runtime. It's remarkably coherent, when one considers it was edited down intermittently from 100 hours of footage over 40-odd years fraught with litigation and one outlandish setback after another. Extremely frenetic, jumping around from color to black and white, 16mm to 35mm, at a pretty consistent breakneck pace across 3 or 4 major set-pieces and a movie-within-the-movie, it's much more in line tonally/aesthetically with something like "F For Fake" as opposed to Welles' better-known works. Though this merely represents a painstaking attempt at approximating Welles' original vision, assembled with the guidance of copious volumes of written material and half-edited scenes, this stands as not only a wild and fascinating self-portrait by one of our greatest film artists (starring another one of our greatest film artists), but also a loving and triumphant tribute to a giant of our times from a younger generation of admirers/colleagues; and, in the case of Bogdanovich, a close personal friend (Welles himself had asked Bogdanovich, in the months leading up to his death in 1985, to see to it personally that the film got finished, were anything to happen to him. And lo and behold, after all this time, he delivered. Hard not to well-up at that.)

Long Live Orson.
The Small Screen / Re: Forever
« Last post by Sleepless on October 11, 2018, 02:28:17 PM »
Meh. The second episode is definitely the highlight. Episode 6 is a standout too. Overall, though, this really isn't that great. No great mystery to solve, and I didn't feel myself really caring about the characters. More just kept watching because I felt obligated. It's only 8 episodes, not a huge commitment, right? It just felt like the creators weren't really sure where they wanted to go with this. Yet there's the distinct promise of potential more. And I'll be honest, I'm curious... But I'm not looking forward to it. Feel free to move both these posts to What shows are you watching?
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