Manhattan 1, Sinbad nil
Manhattan is solid filmmaking; all aspects of the craft are nearly without flaw with this production, I’m pretty sure even the script supervisor was top notch.
Sinbad on the other hand wanted to be too arty, the tight close-up inserts of objects was annoying, and the disjointed storytelling was not needed. It was self-important.
And to call a film self-important when it’s up against a Woody Allen film, well, that’s a film that I really don’t care for.
Woody Allen’s Manhattan has materialized out of the void as the one truly great American film of the ‘70s.
Apparently, Andrew Sarris had already gone senile by 1979. Malick’s Badlands? Cassavetes’ Husbands, not to mention all the other 70s works by him. Scorsese’s Taxi Driver? All those great films by Frederick Wiseman?
Manhattan 0 vs Szindbád 1
“Apparently, Andrew Sarris had already gone senile by 1979”
apparently, almost all (film) critics have gone senile by the 1940’s…
“when it’s up against a Woody Allen film”
i love that Allen film but he’s not God, even Huszarik can reach him.
I thought the 70s one of American film’s worst decades (too much self indulgence for my taste) and even tho I do believe Sarris is engaging in major hyperbole, I also believe Allen’s film to be one of the finest of that decade.
This is a really close one :D
Manhattan 1 Szindbád 0
Manhattan 0 Szindbád 1
Szindbád is a vastly superior film to Manhattan in my opinion.
I have really had to think about this match. To be honest, I want to give it a draw, but I already did that on a couple of occasions in the last year’s World Cup, and to do so again would really violate the spirit of this competition. So I have forced myself to make a difficult decision.
What is interesting is that these two films are actually more similar than they may seem on surface. Made in the 70s, both films feature aging male protagonists who indulge in their privileged status in what are still patriarchal societies. Both also feature lush cinematography, each quite extravagant in its own way. But in Sinbad, we have an older man who finally comes to realize the emptiness—as well as the devastating consequences on other lives—of his selfish actions. On the other hand, in Woody’s film, we have Isaac who doesn’t go through a process of edification. And he desperately tries to hold on to the last vestiges of male privilege in a society that is fast becoming more egalitarian.
Isaac’s previous and failed marriage—one in which his wife left him for a woman—is symbolic of the emasculation felt by the American male-at-large in the 70s. So how does Isaac react? He resorts to dating a female who isn’t yet quite a woman. This isn’t a moralistic reproach of Allen’s film but an analysis of how it is that Isaac, as Allen’s proxy, decides to deal with the imminent equality of the sexes. Isaac’s response is an emotionally stunted one, which I don’t find particularly appealing.
I usually don’t delve into this kind of analysis, where I question the motives of the characters. But in this particular matchup of films, I find myself doing so because we have two filmmakers of very different backgrounds tackling the essentially same theme. And since both are quite excellent and polished stylistically, I find myself focusing on how it is that the two resolve the question of gender hierarchy and its impending fall.
I conclude that Huszárik’s resolution is the more mature and nuanced of the two. I don’t find the conclusion of Szindbád entirely satisfying, but I feel that its protagonist has at least grown somewhat in his humanity.
With all that said, I like the two films very much and rate them both 8.5/10 on my personal scale, but Szindbád gets the nod here.
Manhattan 1 vs. Szindbad 0
The race isn’t always to the swiftest. Szinbad is an absolutely gorgeous film. Exceptional technique.
But it feels like an aesthete’s Wild Strawberries. It just didn’t connect.
Manhattan captures a place and time and is engagingly funny. Not as accomplished but more satisfying.
Although the Huszarik was a very pleasing revalation.
Manhattan 1 – Sinbad 0
Apart from the magnificent scene at the eatery, Sinbad failed to impress me. At least not to the extent to make me vote against Manhattan. One cannot say too many good things about Manhattan, a masterful film reaching the heights of even Chaplin at his best.
Manhattan 1 – Sinbad 0
Much as I like Woody Allen, Szindbad was by far the more interesting film for me.
Once we have 3 more votes we will have already topped the record (which was 30) for the most votes in a match from last year’s World Cup!
cecil what happens if we get a draw what happens then?
This is already a great match. Kudos to the admins for putting them together. Very exciting stuff.
Cyclo, if we get a draw then I add on 24 hours to the deadline.
A great turnout! Wow, I’m so pleased, especially after some of the anemic turnouts in last year’s WC.
Manhattan 1 vs Sinbad 0
While I am happy people have found a hidden gem in Sinbad, I really did not like it at all. Maybe it was the mood I was in when I watched it, but I just found it an incredibly dull film. I could not care for male protagonist at all, and while the fractured narrative was interesting, the lack of depth for me made it difficult to have any interest with anything in the film.
On the other hand, I found Manhattan to be a charming, witty, and most importantly emotionally engaging. Woody Allen is great both on- and off-screen as actor and director, but it is more than a one-man show. On-screen, he is backed up by a great cast, especially from the actresses Mariel Hemmingway, Diane Keaton and Meryl Streep who all add a great deal as much Allan does. If different actresses were cast for their parts, I believe that this film could have really suffered in terms of quality because of it. In terms of direction, the black and white cinematography and the depiction of this part of New York is beautiful; maybe this blasphemous to say, but especially compared to the cinematography in Allan’s film, I didn’t think the cinematography in Sinbad was anywhere as near as good.
Manhattan 1 vs Sinbad 0
we are tied
I’m interested in other Huszárik films though, especially this. Sinbad didn’t work for me but sparked my interest.
We have now officially topped last year’s record! It will be fascinating seeing how many votes this match gets.
Man, this is a difficult decision. I have serious reservations about both films and trying to decide which problems are the less problematic is making my brain hurt. I’m pleased to see all the comments since that might help me make up my mind.
The films are an interesting match in that they deal with somewhat similar subjects but from different angles while their strengths and weaknesses, to my mind, are almost diametrically opposed to each other. I’m going to need more time to think this over.
Woody Allen (Manhattan) 0 vs. Zoltán Huszárik (Sinbad) 1
I loved Manhattan, but I adored Sinbad…
Manhattan 1 vs. Sinbad- 0
Szinbad just couldn’t capture my interest as much as Manhattan did.
I think Sinbad should win just by the mere fact that the director’s name is Zoltan.
And no, this is not an official vote, I have not seen either movie. Both of these movies are pretty much classics, no?
Ryan, Manhattan is a classic. Sinbad is largely unheard of, though it did get in to the Budapest 12 which is a list of what Hungarian film critics considered the twelve best Hungarian films as of 2000.
I was thinking this earlier. If I were voting just based on the Director’s first names, Zoltan kicks Woody’s ass any day of the week.
You know, I’m going to make side-votes on this basis and see how they match up with my actual votes. Very interesting.