Thanks for the trailer JLB. :) That’s the best post of this awful sewing circle of a thread.
HA! Glad I could be of service.
movie looks great, I’m about halfway through the book now. Excited to check this out.
So what’s the response at Cannes been then?
Good but not ecstatic. Some say it’s too “talky” which means that it might get the same reception as A Dangerous Method. I’m all in.
^^Yeah but talky with a bit of strangeness is potentially good!!
Dangerous Method was too dry for me.
^ It definitely has strangeness but I think it’s still fairly subdued (Cronenberg said something to the effect that a subdued style is not an absence of style). Apparently, he reproduces much of the Delillo dialogue straight up (and the final scene with Giamatti and Pattinson that takes place in one room and is almost 15 minutes long). Yeah, I seem to be one of the select few who really dug A Dangerous Method.
I’ve heard all sorts of criticisms about this now. Kermode claims it’s ‘too cerebral’, not that i listen to him much but still, he does like Cronenberg. It’s easier to admire than love in his eyes. I’ve also read that it’s far too long for what it is.
I’ve also read that Cronenberg failed to understand the point of Cosmopolis. One huge dellilo fan on imdb claims that Cronenberg’s failure to understand the uniqueness of cyberculture vis-a-vis ‘regular’ capital is part of the problem, but he said it’s obvious that Dave read the book on a lazy afternoon.
“I’ve also read that Cronenberg failed to understand the point of Cosmopolis.”
He got much the same criticism for Crash and sometimes even receives it for Naked Lunch.
Edit: I would say that DeLillo is one of those ‘unadaptable’ writers for much the opposite reason of Burroughs — the visuals are easily there but stretched, a lot more focus on dialog and its signifiers for place, time, culture, and character than on actions or symbolism. You could visually translate DeLillo word for word and get something like a very boring teleplay.
“the visuals are easily there but stretched, a lot more focus on dialog and its signifiers for place, time, culture, and character than on actions or symbolism. You could visually translate DeLillo word for word and get something like a very boring teleplay.”
I guess, but i’d still love to see a director have a go at adapting White Noise for the big screen, and maybe even Point Omega, which is chock full of symbolism.
I thought about adaptation issues behind White Noise (some new tendency to think through how I would adapt a novel if I were to adapt it, typically happens more often when visual or action elements are happening versus introspection and dialog moments) and realized that it’s yet another one of those books that would need a careful and visionary director. I suppose that goes without saying about any book but for instance Harry Potter was, with a few exceptions, adapted almost literally, really, and that worked out for it, whereas some books if you adapted literally would miss the entire point. For instance, House of Leaves could be adapted into a pretty profound film, unless they went literal at which point it would be The Blair Witch Project 2: Book of Shadows level quality. You’d have to fuck with visual structure the same way Danielewsky fucked with graphic design and typefaces, but visual structure is not the same structure as graphic design and typefaces, so you’d have to do the same thing completely differently.
White Noise would make a fantastic film if made by the likes of the Coen brothers. Think of how they insert irony into dialog, or think of the storm at the end of A Serious Man and how similar imagery would work with the airborne toxic event. They could make the shooting at the end of the film actually shocking, hilarious, and compelling. The problem is that they would probably make it feel more silly than it is. Nevertheless they could get close.
But what if Roger Avery got ahold of it? It’s the exact type of material that would attract him, and boy would he make it godawful. The characters would become profoundly hateful, whereas in the book they’re endearingly hateful, and Avery would do that on purpose. The shooting at the end would feel more visceral but ultimately more like shock value, and it would abruptly change the tone of the movie.
Now imagine a director-for-hire taking it on for commercial purposes. Now the characters wouldn’t be hateful, because ‘the audience has to like them’, but as a result they’d be very, very silly. The shooting at the end probably wouldn’t make a lick of sense and would come off as simply contrived. I wouldn’t go as far to say the airborne toxic event would be bad CG, but an explanation would probably be inserted to explain, like the CG smokestacks in Teeth, even if never isolated by dialog or exposition nevertheless still there in the background as a fallback element in case audiences complained.
I know basically the same arguments could be made, cherrypicking individual directors, for most books. But much of DeLillo’s work strikes me as operating on logocentric signifiers whereby the verbal ironies or turns of phrases or even outright syntax are more meaningful than the story. So like House of Leaves, it would require visual syntax to be fuckered around with exactly like how verbal syntax is fuckered around with, but very differently because visual syntax is not verbal syntax.
From the LOL file (courtesy of Glenn Kenny)—Cronenberg and Pattinson ringing the opening bell at the New York Stock Exchange this morning:
Robert Pattison was on The Daily Show yesterday.
During every cutaway to a news segment they had a banner up saying, "Welcome, Twilight fans. This is a topical comedy show mostly dealing with politics and the media.” Pretty funny.
haha Matt, that was great!!
on the subject of Delillo, i picked up a copy of Libra just yesterday.
Wonder how many who work at the NYSE have read DeLillo and/or are fans of Cronenberg.
I would have been interested, but any film with Pattinson in it is totally ruined for me.
I haven’t heard many good things about this and am worried that Croneberg is going back into a rut.
Too bad nobody shouted “long live the new flesh” before they rang the bell.
“I haven’t heard many good things”
Really? Depends on who you read and/or listen to, of course. But Hoberman liked it, Amy Taubin in Film Comment liked it (and she was quoted on Indiewire saying @ Cannes that ""Cosmopolis" is a masterpiece, the most fully formed and realized film Cronenberg has made, and like “Videodrome” a film about transformation of what think of as human beings. The negative criticism sounds the same as what was leveled at ‘2001"when it was first released." Glenn Kenny liked it (“Cosmopolis” is almost certainly some kind of masterpiece, but I have to admit it’s probably not for everyone."), José Teodoro and Adam Nayman liked it in Cinema Scope . . .
I know there are people who are still hung up on “aw, I wish he was still doing the ‘body horror’ thing,” but that was all but over with The Fly 26 years ago.
@Matt Parks – I’m not asking Cronenberg to make a return to his older films, nor did the reviews/sources I heard the comments. I heard some mixed reactions coming out of Cannes, particularly the “here today, gone today” impact of the source material and the tone of the film. I am not using that as a basis for seeing it, but the trailer didn’t give me hope. I was really looking forward to Dangerous Method, but I wasn’t really happy with the results.
It’s a very good, strange movie.
Not saying you were, Pierre, but there are people who like Cronenberg a lot who have never been able to really make the leap from the first two decades of Cronenberg’s career to the next two.
“Wonder how many who work at the NYSE have read DeLillo and/or are fans of Cronenberg.”
I’m sure there’s some. It’s kind of interesting to think that these days people leverage on the financial industry people what upper class people used to leverage on lower class people: “Huh, I wonder how many of them have even heard of a concerto?”
Don’t mean it like that. I used to work not actually on Wall Street, but for a Wall Street company (like literally, the corporate headquarters was on Wall St.), and there are a lot of highly educated, brilliant people on Wall Street. What I’m wondering is 1. how recognizable is Cronenberg in this context? 2. how the actual content of the film/novel plays for this particular demographic?
It’s funny in the sense that the film is getting, in essence (amid a hodgepodge of CEOs and groups of Olympic athletes), a sort of vague endorsement of the NYSE, which is more than a little ironic given what it has to say about Eric Parker. Which makes you wonder how aware the people who arrange these things are of the actual work, or whether it’s viewed as simply another sort of transaction.
Oh sure. I’m sitting back waiting for the reviews rife with “1%” and “99%” readings all throughout just because of the concept.
. . . and they released it in an election year, no less. :)
(disclaimer" the above is not intended as a serious political statement)
i think it would be reasonably safe to assume that wall street types.dont actually think they doing anything. wrong. it is just business. they might feel sorry for Packer in a way we wouldnt or think he just overleveraged. haha
wasnt American Psycho a hit on wall street?
Polaris, once upon a time the business world was full of people with average intelligence. now it is made up of aome of the.countrys best.and brightest. id wager the main reason they might not be into these kind of films or ideas is because they are too busy and immersed in the world of numbers, which is a big part.of Cosmopolis.