He’s never really talked about today in the same breath today as fellow italian directors such as Fellini, Leone, Visconti ,Bertolucci and Antonioni.
i recently watched a few of his films such as Medea, Porcile, Salo, Teorrma and The best out of the bunch The Gospel according to St matthew and Accattone.
Do you think he’s under valued in the Canon of great italian directors?
also whats your favourite film of his?
The only film of his I’ve seen is “Teorema”. I couldn’t get into it. Very complex and offsetting. Needless to say, it seemed he was clearly an artist with something to express and a unique point of view. I’d say he’s important in that respect.
Accattone, his debut in filmmaking, is one of THE unsung masterpieces of cinema. I prefer it to every Fellini, Leone, Visconti, Bertolucci and Antonioni film I have seen so far.
Pasolini is, in my opinion, the true master of alienation filmmaking. Not only are his films hyper-literate, nearly all of them are filmed in ways that make it virtually impossible to relate to the characters on screen. I’ve only seen 2 or 3 other filmmakers who can do this effectively.
I think because the techniques he perfected have not been particularly influential – most people don’t go to the cinema in order to feel alienated – he has not been given his proper due.
I do feel he’s undervalued, but at the same time i like that his canon is appreciated by a selective few (i’m sure he would have liked that as well).
My favorite film by him is “Che Cosa Sono le Nuvole”, which is available on youtube (it’s only 20 minutes). My favorite full-length by him is probably Oedipus Rex, although i kind of have an affection for all of them, even the ones people hate like “the canterbury tales” and “porcile”.
I think Accattone and Mamma Roma still remain my favorites. I also have a soft spot for Pasolini’s depiction of Jesus as a Marxist fisherman in The Gospel According to St. Matthew and the incredible soundtrack to Medea. And Salo remains more relevant than ever—the scenes from that film were quite prescient and uncanny in their similarity to the photos of US military’s torture of prisoners in Abu Ghraib.
Panning the west in one giant over-generalization…Check.
Saying his work requires in depth discussion and offering nothing of depth…Check.
pasolini is still regarded as a slain prophet by the italian left .his position as a public intelectual was just as important as his art ,nanni moretti,s tribute to him in dear dairy highlights that veneration and the controversy stillhanging over his murder.
If he didn’t make Salo, I might just take him seriously and watch his films but anyone who makes films like that automatically put themselves at the bottom of my ‘directors I want to check out’ list, I have seen none of his films and am not interested in changing that anytime soon. Generally I would assume Salo has a lot to do with Pasolini’s being ‘undervalued’.
“Panning the west in one giant over-generalization…Check.
Saying his work requires in depth discussion and offering nothing of depth…Check.”
I really don’t see how you could say this. He was pretty artistically and intellectually active for about 40 years, extremely prolific in both literature and film, and well respected that entire time. I don’t really think he “panned the west” in one go. He looked at things from a personal perspective and was a true auteur in this sense.
Do you even know what Salo is about? You haven’t seen that or any other film of his, so how about keeping your complete and literal ignorance on the matter to yourself?
It’s kind of pointless to watch “Salo” without seeing at least a few of his previous films. If you don’t you’ll just be watching it for the shock value and will probably get nothing out of it.
My favorite Pasolini will always be The Hawks and the Sparrows. It’s hard for me to say why that is, but I know that every time I watch it I am completely charmed. I think he is truly undervalued today, but the people who posted above me offer far better explanations than I could. I simply wish more people knew him for his many other works, and didn’t just quote Salo.
I am on an internet forum, why should I keep my opinion to myself? I said nothing insulting about Pasolini, I didn’t say I think Salo is a big pile of shit (… ) I haven’t seen it, it might be great, though I am not going to find out anytime soon AND I think it is perfectly valid to suggest that Pasolini’s being undervalued is maybe caused by Salo, I am evidently an example of being put off by it and I am sure I am not the only one.
Yes I know what Salo is about and sorry but I don’t want to watch a film with such grotesque imagery in it, I don’t like film watching to be an ordeal, I don’t see the appeal in it the same with these ridiculous gore-centric horror films, like Martyrs and Inside, I am pretty sure I’ll never watch either of them. I seriously don’t understand why anyone would want to witness such images, it totally bewilders me.
Maybe Hawks and Sparrows will rightfully win its match and more Pasolini films will be viewed soon.
“If he didn’t make Salo, I might just take him seriously and watch his films but anyone who makes films like that automatically put themselves at the bottom of my ‘directors I want to check out’ list, I have seen none of his films and am not interested in changing that anytime soon.”
I can understand why one wouldn’t watch ‘Salo’, but why shut out a director’s entire oeuvre because of one film? He didn’t really make films “like that”, no one mistook him for the takashi miike of his day, so why be so willingly closed minded?
As I said he’s at the bottom of my directors to watch list, he’s not in my ’don’t bother with these hacks’ list.
And yet you persist in being ignorant about a film you haven’t seen, and are only taking secondhand information about it as valuable. Why would you let others make up your mind for you? Maybe that’s worse than ignorance.
Yea I suppose I should spend all my money on the collected works of Uwe Boll and Michael Bay as second hand information is totally wrong. Tell you what might be interesting, as you know Pasolini’s work actually discussing it and maybe turning people like me onto some great films rather than forcing me to post utterly banal responses like this.
What have you added to this discussion apart from insulting me? Just as much trite as I have added, now if we stop this fun dance and talk about Pier Pasolini’s films we might be getting somewhere.
hawks and sparrows unique conbination of brecht and chaplin should bring everyone round to pasolini
I’ve only seen Mamma Roma and Salo, both of which I really liked. His films are really wants that you’ll want to read up about afterward so you can have a better understanding because there is a lot of subtext that may not be immediately visible (Salo being a huuuuge example). I have Pigsty chilling at the house but I need to get my PS3 fixed so I can watch it
salo was a cry of anger and desperation over the appropriation of his trilogy of life by B movies companies who produced unofficial remakes. Pasolini’s celebration of the human body had been reduced to pornography.
It was a necessary evolution of his work to move on from the old fashioned romanticism of films like “Decamerone”, and face the reality of his country that lied in the more recent past and which had still not been worked off. It’s a true shame that people ignore what the autonomous republic of Salo stands for, and to depict the rape of people as it happened in the 1940s was absolutely essential and deserves respect, even if doing it in an allegorical way as Pasolini decided to do. Those who prefer to look away and not face these images or the ones from Nazi concentration camps have the right to do so, but shouldn’t state nonsense on here about a filmmaker who made an effort so that history will not be easily forgotten (or repeated).
im sugesting that the b movies made in the wake of his trilogy of life reduced pasolini,s celebration of the body to pornography.i agree with you about salo,s intentions.
I’ll never have a personally accurate view of Pasolini till I know if it’s true that he tried to cast Jack Kerouac as Christ in “…St. Matthew”.
That said, I’m only a passing fan of his later films but the early ones like Accattone have an ability to get to the core of the matter without any hype and without becoming the least bit boring.
That style has continued and he’s been very much a part of it. Think Pedro Costa and others, Chantal Akerman?
I agree with you, Liamallen. My post was primarily directed at the poster above you who stated that he would no longer take a look at Pasolini’s oevre because he made a film like “Salo”.
@Doinel: Paradjanov was also a huge admirer of Pasolini and counted him as one of his mayor influences. I think one can find some similarities between Paradjanov’s works and films such as “Edipo Re” and “Medea”.
Pasolini is a very great filmmaker an signla aritsitc figure of the 60’s. In mainstream terms his films aren’t as easily digestible as others – even Godard. He used non-professionalactors for the most part, and real locations. But the results aren’t “realistic” in the accepted sense. Moreover he made films for an intellectually informed audience. “Salo” is an adaptation of the Marquis de Sade’s “The 120 Days of Sodm” and of you’re not familiar with that book the film is meaningless. Knowledge of the last days of fascist Italy is also required as is an awareness of Paul Vecchiali’s film “Femme Femmes” which is sampled at one point in the proceedings.
My favorites are the Ninetto films — especially this one:
And this one —
Ninetto was the love of Pasolini’s life.
Although Il Vangelo Secondo Matteo had a leftist slant I still didn’t enjoy that much. It’s the only Pasolini I’ve seen so far, probably go for Accatone next.
@Apursansar — Paradjanov
A director I haven’t paid enough attention to. I feel I need to brush up on the history of the region before I “get it”.
I loved “The Color of Pomegranates” visually but I was lost. I need to revisit it.