Wednesday, July 30, 2008

syndromes

Double-bill of the day:


Excerpt from The Stendhal Syndrome (Dario Argento, 1996), with Asia Argento.


La déraison du Louvre (Ange Leccia, 2006), with Laetitia Casta.

(These past two weeks have been busy catching up with some 'auteur cinema' from the past year at the Auckland International Film Festival, where I finally saw Rivette's Ne touchez pas la hache (2007). I'll wait till I see it again before I say much about it but, to me, this looks, sounds, feels like a masterpiece. Others I saw for the first time and liked include, among others, Night and Day (Hong, 2008); La France (Bozon, 2007), with elements of Rohmer's Perceval ('78) and Monteiro's Silvestre ('82) converging in a very concrete presence of light and shadow; Christopher Columbus, the Enigma (Oliveira, 2007); all the Edward Yang films I saw in the retrospective programme, especially Taipei Story (1985), and the mysteriously underrated, A Confucius Confusion (1994), both new to me, along with the previously-seen The Terrorizer (1986) and A Brighter Summer Day (1991); Blue Tide, Black Water (Eve Gordon, Sam Hamilton, 2008), and the magnificent films of Ben Rivers and Ben Russell, but more on them later, perhaps...)

Tuesday, July 08, 2008

Bruce Conner

"It is part of my general point of view that the work is never finished, period. It's always changing, through time and how people experience it." (Bruce Conner, 1933-2008)

Thinking today of the filmmaker who has left behind such works as Take the 5:10 to Dreamland (1976), Crossroads (1976), Marilyn Times Five (1973), Report (1967); personal landmark films for anyone who has seen them, works that impart great power to the images - found footage or otherwise - in their critical and elegiac usage (Brenez's terms) to arrive at forms of truth.

Monday, July 07, 2008

Mizoguchi/Sternberg

















[Images from The Straits of Love and Hate (Aien kyo, Kenji Mizoguchi, 1937) and The Docks of New York (Josef von Sternberg, 1928).]

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