Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Celluloid #3

No "In Theatre" happenings this week...

In Home

Benny's Video (1992) Haneke - Part of the trilogy that includes Seventh Continent and Funny Games, this film focuses on a 14 year-old-boy who is fascinated with violent and disturbing videos. He commits a violent act himself when his parents are out of town, and his parents try to help him deal with the aftermath. Like Funny Games, Haneke seems to be making an explicit comment on media and violence, and specifically the audience's complicity in such acts. Fascinating and disturbing as usual...5/5

Clean, Shaven (1997) Kerrigan - Sound plays a huge role in this film that portrays a schizophrenic man in small town New England. There's very little dialogue, but lots of random noises, static, and voices. Peter Winter just wants to visit his daughter that had been given up for adoption at a very young age. Meanwhile, another young girl in town had been violently murdered and an investigator is snooping around for evidence and suspects Peter in the case. 3.5/5

Opera (1987) Argento - What I think people like about Argento films (if you like them at all, or maybe just what I like about Argento films) is a certain amount of campiness...awesome soundtracks, over-the-top killings that invoke laughter, vivid colors, and even some amount of charm in the obviously bad acting. However, of the 4 films that I have seen now, Opera is my least favorite. The plotline surrounds a young opera singer who makes her debut in "MacBeth" which is regarded as a cursed opera. Basically, having seen Argento films made 5-10 years earlier, it just seems like he has run out of ridiculous devices, plus instead of prog-rock or synthy/danceyness...this film's music is essentially 80s metal..not my personal favorite. 3/5

Playtime (1967) Tati - This film is full of grey imagery...concrete, chrome, grey suits. For the bulk of the film, M. Hulot bumbles around Paris. He's an old man facing a new, modern, sterile Paris. Nothing much happens and there is barely any dialogue, but rather a constant mumbling from American tourists and other crowds. Overall, the film is shot and feels like it's supposed to be a comedy, and I don't know if it's just because it's a French film made in the 1960s, but it's really not funny...the gags are pretty cheesy. However, the scene of the brand new restaurant is pretty fun (although not funny) but that's probably just because I like the dancing. It's a beautiful film, and I get the point, but it's just too long and in reality a little boring to watch. 3.5/5

Vagabond (1985) Varda - A film about a twenty-something French girl, Mona, who has "dropped out" and is travelling around, hitchhiking, camping, and working on the occasion in the French countryside. It's mostly linear with flashbacks to documentary-style interviews with people who had interacted with Mona. An interesting film about being intentionally homeless. 4/5

In the News
*Alejandro Jodorowsky, director responsible for El Topo and Holy Mountain, is coming out with a new film called King Shot. David Lynch is producing and the cast may include Asia Argento (Dario's daughter), Nick Nolte, and Marilyn Manson. I have no idea what it's about, but purportedly is somewhat of a gangster film...2009
*Limits of Control (new Jarmusch mentioned a few weeks ago) sounding better and better: Bill Murray, Tilda Swinton, and Gael Garcia Bernal all expected to be a part of the cast.
*Vincent Gallo may not be directing any more films ever, but he is acting...in an upcoming Francis Ford Coppola film, Tetro.

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