This topic is part of the 2012 MUBI World Cup. If you have not already done so, please read the first post at the topic for an introduction to and rules about this year’s World Cup:
The purpose of this topic is to cast votes in the matchup listed above and also to be a forum for discussing the films in the match.
Anyone who has seen both of the films listed above may vote in this match. You must vote for whichever of the two films you personally like better. In order to vote you must post a reply to this topic containing one of the following sequences:
If you are voting for The Circle: “Portugal (The Circle) 1 – United States of America (Ruggles of Red Gap) 0”
If you are voting for Ruggles of Red Gap: “Portugal (The Circle) 0 – United States of America (Ruggles of Red Gap) 1”
Your vote must contain the names of both films with a “one” after the film you are voting for and a “zero” after the other film. If your vote is not formatted in this way it will not be counted.
Along with your vote you are strongly encouraged to leave additional comments regarding your reactions to the films, your reasons for why you voted the way you did, and responses to other participants’ comments. Being able to have deep discussion about the films and different aspects of them is an important part of finding enjoyment in participating in the World Cup.
This match will end on Tuesday, August 7 at 10:00 PM GMT. No votes attempted to be cast after that time will be counted. Shortly after the match ends the votes will be tallied and a winner of the match will be declared. If the films both receive the same number of votes, the match will be considered a tie.
The percentage of votes each film receives in a match will have an effect on whether or not the corresponding country will participate in the final round of the World Cup. Thus even if the film you vote for loses in this match, your vote will still be important.
The results of the matches as well as the schedule for future matches can be found here:
If you would like to participate but are unable to find sources to watch these films, please send me a personal message so that I can invite you to the private website featuring internet links to view the films.
Ruggles is soooo goood! I have to watch The Circle so I can vote in this one.
Ruggles is ridiculously good. I’ve been wanting to see The Circle for a while now.
Portugal (The Circle) 1 – United States of America (Ruggles of Red Gap) 0
Great matchup. Hopefully those who enjoy The Circle can check out some more of Portugal’s Novo Cinema movement from the 60s and 70s.
Twodeadmagpies sends in her vote and comments:
apparently ruggles is meant to be funny. or even ‘vaguely amusing’. i must have watched a version with those bits severely edited out. and you can shove your sententious patriotic speeches up your arse. o cerco on the other hand is a portuguese new wave naruse, in the sense that you have to watch a stupid pretty girl get shat on for two hours, analogy or not, tick-tock. perhaps a lot of men find that more involving than i do. still, i can see why people like it (i liked the goldfish) whereas i don’t even care to know that people like the crass humour and speechifying in ruggles. miss me now?
Portugal (The Circle) 0 – United States of America (Ruggles of Red Gap) 1
didn’t realize votes from ‘the beyond’ were allowed.
Twodeadmagpies could have easily submitted her vote under her new Mubi username. Why didn’t she? Because moderators are easy and awesome.
Twodeadmagpies created her new account within hours of canceling her old one. She couldn’t escape the melodrama. Risselada knows this, of course.
united states of america (ruggles of red gap) 1 – portugal (the circle) 0
love the look of the circle but ruggles is a long time fave of mine even if the ‘gettysburg address’ scene is a little corny. one of my favorite laughton performances plus i’m a sucker for films of the 30s and this one is adorable
get outta here
Ruggles of Red Gap is a comedic coup by Charles Laughton, an amazingly talented actor/director. His minimalist facial expressions during the Paris sequences were everything Buster Keaton could have conjured without any loss of quality. The movie bogs down in its second half after arriving in the wilds of Washington State where it wraps itself in some quasi-serious balderdash about freeing the aristocratic “downstairs” class. Not a mortal sin perhaps, if we remember how many early films gave away doses of propaganda or simpleton idealizations like toys in between-the-wars Cracker Jacks boxes. Mary Boland also gave an exceptional performance of manic trills, frills and smelling salts as the nouveau riche wife bent on raising her station among Dogwood society. Leo McCarey was known as one of Hollywood’s best writer/directors in comedy, cutting his teeth in silent two-reelers with Laurel and Hardy, Eddie Cantor, Mae West, Our Gang, and segueing nicely into talkies with the Marx Brothers, W.C. Fields and eventually Cary Grant and Bing Crosby. Certainly he wasn’t afraid of schmaltz, but this was an era of kick-in-the-pants comedy which led into that decidedly loveable rubric “screwball comedy.” So, Ruggles is well positioned in the annals of American 30’s comedy films. The text property had been around since WWI in novel form, stage play, and had seen two prior films produced before this McCarey/Laughton laugher. The prior Ruggles 1923 production featured Edward Everett Horton as Marmaduke the valet, which I can only imagine is also an interesting role. Mr. Horton being one of the best character actors when the instituted proprieties of the day were being given the heave-ho by a gentleman’s gentleman. What the 1936 screenplay lacks in subtlety, it makes up for in ensemble acting performances and the already mentioned role embodied by Charles Laughton. If actors of any era were looking for a primer on comedy performance, the first half-hour of Ruggles of Red Gap would be an exemplary place to turn.
António da Cunha Telles’ s Novo Cinema title The Circle is a completely different subject and style of film than that we spoke of above. However, both films rely prominently on their stars—in the case of Portugal’s match entry, our attention is utterly demanded by the wispy, bi-gender sensuality of its actress, Maria Cabral. She doesn’t fill her role so much as she haunts her role. The film itself is a bit of a discursive stroll through 1970 Lisbon, and isn’t afraid to show similarities with projects in French New Wave territory, or London’s Swinging existential romps featuring an ingenue Julie Christie or Rita Tushingham, perhaps one could even point to Antonioni’s use of Monica Vitti as an acceptable doppelganger. No matter the genes it was spliced from, The Circle remains a completely unique, stylized, beautiful, weird, miasmic view of a woman who seems to embody no personal essence other than that vacuumed into herself by existing in interesting social and psychological locales. We could almost say she’s known by her reflection off the diverse male husbands, lovers, father-figures, hoodlums, boyfriends with whom she’s alternately entwined with and estranged from, before moving on to the next bad decision. Hers is a world of half-truths, ping-ponging back and forth between security and freedom, arguably attempting to grow her own identity, but more often faltering into the arms of her naïve, childish, romanticisms. She’s no doubt a fascinating character in film, captured here in black & white verité images while her waif persona, Marta, blurs the lines between a faux-freckled child and a seducing woman; also a boy and girl; mistress and daughter; fashion model and bunco wheel-greaser; a partner in adult sexcapades or a little girl’s sleep-over. There’s something of a feminist Walt Whitman about Marta’s character, but without the introspection. She’s the source of many diverse combinations many completely accidental. The Circle is an absorbing character study which runs willy-nilly through the assurances most films present to us as being indicative of modern life, usually presented in linear story lines, whereas Marta moves in loops, spirals, circles, perhaps like that goldfish placed in her bathtub. She’s a sexy, adventurous, passive, confused example of power and its lack. The film examines life lived subjectively for the harmonious moment, and conversely it scrutinizes an objectively desirous future plan of very limited scope with no true possibility of success—a mini-skirted babe in testosterone-stinking woods.
Portugal (The Circle) 1 – United States of America (Ruggles of Red Gap) 0
If magpies has a new MUBI account I’m unaware of it. I have her email address and I had sent her an email telling her how much I liked Pictures of the Old World. She responded with some other comments and threw in he request to post her vote for this match.
Grrrrrrrrrrrrr, it’s going to be VERY difficult for me to find time to watch The Circle. Just how good is it. Those of you who know my taste, do you think I’ll like it?
Then again even if I hate it I want to watch it so I can vote for Ruggles because I love it so much!
I wish people left more comments with their votes. I can’t tell if it’s more of a case of people loving The Circle or disliking Ruggles
@ Riss—if you’re still looking for a recommendation to see The Circle, I’ll give that recommendation. It may not dissuade you from voting for Ruggles, but its a good film with enough understated Freudian/Lacanian touchstones to keep one thinking. The woman’s presence in front of a camera is rare to behold—not acting mind you, but presence. Nobody in the entire film can act, except perhaps the crook. The poor ADR and some of the technical flaws are certainly noticeable, but it doesn’t detract from the ideas. Not much bulk for your spiritual wood chipper I’m afraid, but good nonetheless.
I would have voted for the portuguese film if it had shown a lot more of that football match, preferably all 90 minutes of it. we’d have probably seen eusebio run circles around the opposition defenders, so the film’s title would still be appropriate. I didn’t particularly like ruggles of red gap either, but it at least had an entertaining lead performance.
Ah, I wanted to see The Circle, but my internet at my home went out last night and I hadn’t already downloaded it……
Well I’m glad others are enjoying it.
Sorry Ruggles and USA.
VOTING IS CLOSED
Portugal (The Circle) – 6
United States of America (Ruggles of Red Gap) – 4
The winner is:
To arms, to arms!
Over land, over sea,
To arms, to arms!
For the Fatherland, fight!
Against the cannons, march on, march on
Ahaaaaaaaaa Portugaaaaaaaaaaaaaaal! <3
Thanks for bringing up this thread Chanandre. I am glad to have discovered two superb films. I would have probably abstained from voting in this match.