le jour se lève d. carné (1939) 7.5/10
strange story but the great atmosphere and gabin’s performance made up for it
reign of terror aka the black book d. mann (1949) 6.5/10
a really odd genre mix but a decent thriller, worth watching for alton’s beautiful noir photography alone. robert cummings was a weak lead imo. and lol at that ending
Eye of the Well 5/10
A series of mildly interesting scenes with a discomforting touch of exoticism.
Almanac of Fall 8.5/10
Another brilliant Tarr film.
Barney’s Version (Director: Richard J. Lewis)
Giamatti is great but he can do this kind of role in his sleep. The rest of the movie is lacking but I enjoyed it nonetheless.
This weekend I’m going to see Beginners and will probably catch a few movies on demand as well.
Follow Me Quietly
All time top 5: the killer standing in for the dummy, one of the best scenes I have seen and not an ounce of fat on this thing, frightening for a 40s films or any era. The cop’s flirtations are interesting and somewhat sinister too, a film about murder and the kind of things that make people go mad, also functions as a damn fine police procedural, Richard Fleischer’s best film
The Grapes of Wrath second watch (1940, John Ford): Beautifully shot and engaging. Still it’s simplistic from the romanticised view of these characters, to how it doesn’t show them labouring away (it all feels glossed over, very Hollywood), to the irritating homespun wisdom (the final speech is nauseating). It’s kind of silly too with its presentation of authority being cartoonishly over the top whilst its praise of the Government is absurd. I can’t honestly call it bad, but I’m certainly not impressed. I’d very much like to read the novel. 5/10
All Quiet on the Western Front (1930, Lewis Milestone): An affecting film about the horrors of war particularly in its recreation of the bunkers which felt downright claustrophobic to me, or in its battle scenes where there is no glory but just death and pointlessness. The film can feel a bit stilted at times (the acting isn’t great..), and it can also get hokey as well (the conclusion to the training section of the film near the beginning was absurd..), but its strengths leave enough of an impact that I can mostly forgive its weaknesses. 8/10
Wild at Heart (1990, David Lynch): One weeeeeird trashy road movie. For me this plays out pretty much like a comedy (which isn’t something I ever thought I’d say about a David Lynch film, even if he does often purposely push his films into the realms of knowingly, gleefully ludicrous), albeit a comedy with a vein of something nightmarish underneath and amped up with some awesome style. I can completely understand why it’s often considered a lesser Lynch film, but I just had so much fun with it. 8.5/10
Where’s Guelwaar in that list?
All Quiet is an infinitely better film to Ford’s glorious melodrama but dude, Grapes of Wrath is like one of Ford’s boldest, most introspective films, hehe ;)
Nevertheless, you should read both of the respective books, which is why I drew the comparison of the two films, the two books are marvelous achievements of human self-sacrifice without the least bit of sentimentality.
I agree you should read The Grapes of Wrath, along with East of Eden as Steinbeck’s greatest works. I love that book so much I wish I’d never seen the film.
Thirded about the brilliance of Steinbeck’s GRAPES OF WRATH as opposed to the movie, which tidies it up a good deal. Essential reading.
”Where’s Guelwaar in that list?”
Ah, sorry >.< For the last two weeks I’ve only been able to watch films that I can record off of tv, on the basis that I was living with my dad and if I retreat to me room to watch films on my laptop instead of watching films on the tv in his lounge then he starts to hassle me about it because he starts to think that it was his doing something wrong which made me retreat to my room, and not me just wanting my own space… Now I’m in my new house, which means I don’t have that issue, however this house’s internet connection only has 40GB a month bandwidth and that’s for other people as well as me meaning that for the next month I won’t really be able to download any films >.< Next month my landlord will hopefully be switch ISP :)
“Grapes of Wrath is like one of Ford’s boldest, most introspective films, hehe ;)”
Heh, I’m just generally not a huge fan nof John Ford. Stagecoach is absolutely great, but the other five films I’ve seen from him (Fort Apache, She Wore a Yellow Ribbon, The Searchers, The Grapes of Wrath and Pilgrimage) haven’t done much for me if I’m honest…
“various recommendations of The Grapes of Wrath”
Ah, I’ve actually been wanting to read that since seeing the film. I will hopefully order it in my next batch of amazon stuff :) (along with the new Tarkovsky boxset!!!)
Don’t give up on Ford until you’ve seen My Darling Clementine and The Man who Shot Liberty Valance.
Oh, I’m not about to give up on him quite yet :) Those two are the ones I still really want to see.
Army of Shadows (1969)
Having just watched The Sorrow and the Pity for the first time, it was cool to see this fictionalized account of resistance fighters. Much melodrama but very well-made and acted and obviously an important film for the French.
I started enjoying Ford when I learned to take him with a grain of salt.
Just pretend all the Indians are zombies, and his films don’t seem racist.
The Perfect Host (Director: Nick Tomnay)
a fun, twisty, twisted little thriller with a fall-on-the-floor hilarious turn by David Hyde Pierce. The Perfect Host is a blast of a film. You gotta check this one out. It’s Funny Games meets The Ref.
“Just pretend all the Indians are zombies, and his films don’t seem racist.”
That’s quote of the month alright because that’s exactly how one should watch a Ford adventure. I don’t want to hear any overrated statements again of Ford being “the greatest artist of the 20th century” and that kind of crap.
^It seems to me…that you do want to hear etc.
Shouldn’t we be more concerned that they are human before they are Native American? That seems to be all everyone seems to want to talk about. I guess I haven’t seen enough John Ford films to really make an opinion.
Can they really be that appalling?
^ Appalling no, heavily biased yes but not in terms of dialogue, more so in the sense of “showing” than saying.
Cooler Brother, please don’t twist again my argument or I’ll think you’re just another meta-hippie rambler.
Blood Simple 9/10
I don’t find things that conform to their time all that racist. I don’t find Jolson racist, that sort of thing was nearly the norm back then, I find Steve Martin doing the same schtick in Bringing Down the House a bit racist.
I don’t twist.
Wish me luck, though: I’m going to the cinema with my nephew to see…Transformers 3D or something.
^ You may not “twist” nor “ramble”, you insult though, therefore you are a zero.
Ford’s use of Indians conforms more to the folklore of the period than reality, which Ford would have readily admitted. But, it does get a little excessive in The Searchers when they talk about shooting a girl in the head because she was raised by Indians. “She’s not white! Not anymore!”
De Sica’s “Shoeshine” was the last movie I saw. It blows the cobwebs from your brains and gets a tip-top rating.