Home    Film    Art     Other: (Travel, Rants, Obits)    Links    About    Contact
a_film_by Main Page
Posts From the Internet Film Discussion Group, a_film_by

This group is dedicated to discussing film as art from an auteurist perspective. The index to these files of posts can be found at http://www.fredcamper.com/afilmby/ The purpose of these files is to make our posts more accessible, for downloading and reading and to search engines.

Important: The copyright of each post below is owned by the person who wrote the post, and reproducing it in any form requires that person's permission. It is possible to email the author of any post by finding a post they have written in the a_film_by archives at http://movies.groups.yahoo.com/group/a_film_by/messages and emailing them from that Web site.



3901


From: jpcoursodon
Date: Mon Nov 10, 2003 1:03am
Subject: Re: France We Love You
 
As the token French person on this group I feel a bit sheepish having
unwittingly triggered this thread. My original post was just a little
joke about the familiar U.S. stereotypes concerning the French (from
the berets to the love for Jerry Lewis) -- by the way, George,
your "Surrealist" response broke me up; I was still giggling an hour
later... I thank Mike for his nice and heart-felt defense of French
culture, but I can assure you I had no intention to comment upon the
anti-French wave of the past months. Which would have no place on
an "auteurist" forum, even though auteurism was born in France.

The ambivalence of Americans toward France is well-known ( and
perhaps David has a good key to it). It is well matched by the
French's ambivalence toward the Americans. Give either side a chance
and they'll start lashing out (or at the very least putting on airs).
The Germans and Russians sided with the French in their opposition to
the Iraq invasion, but only the French were taken to task for it.
However the whole thing was so silly that it really didn't warrant
much concern. Moreover I personally consider Chirac a despicable
fool, a crook and a hypocrite. So...

I like Minnelli but I don't think he is what we need. An American in
Paris is one of my least favorite musicals (despite the stunning
ballet). At least it didn't have Maurice Chevalier, like the
awful "Gigi", but Guetary isn't much better. I'll take "Funny face"
any time. "All good Americans should come here to die" goes the
song "Bonjour Paris". Of course the view of France is as cartoonish
as in the Minnelli (Joe Dante must like the conflation of Montmartre,
Montparnasse and St Germain des Pres) but who cares?

But really, most Americans, I think, know or care little or nothing
about France. How many have ever seen a French film (outside of
auteurists and big-city snobs)? A few might say, like Kathy
Selden, "I saw one, once..." The problem with this country is its
incredibly ethnocentric attitude. An American movie is described as a
comedy, a drama, a western, whatever; a foreign movie is just
described as "foreign". That tells it all...
JPC
3902


From: jaketwilson
Date: Mon Nov 10, 2003 1:10am
Subject: Re: Pretty good use of SF locations by neither Hitchcock nor Daves
 
> Relating to the film purely visually would, for one thing, mean
> you're not paying attention to rhythm, pacing, sequence, or sound.
> Which I somehow doubt is the case, Peter! I don't think there's
> anything wrong with refining a view of narrative art to its non-
> narrative aspects, particularly when you know the art well. But if
a
> film engages you on a narrative level (that is, if a narrative
> exists, not if it successfully pulls you in), there seems to me to
be
> an obligation to acknowledge the narrative. I think art is
> fundamentally about experience, and part of the transpersonal
> experience that Fred goes for (and which I go for as well) can be,
to
> me, communicated in narrative film throughout character
psychology.

Hear, hear.

What puzzles me a bit about the extreme formalist stance is the
insistence that certain kinds of responses to art are "aesthetic",
hence legitimate, and others "non-aesthetic". Where does this
distinction come from? Legitimately or not, much art does presume
upon and exploit our shared capacity for such all-too-human emotions
as attraction to physical beauty, imaginative sympathy for suffering,
and curiosity about future events.

If responding aesthetically means leaving all this behind, well, I
guess I'm not an aesthete. But I still don't see why narrative should
automatically be opposed to form -- as if storytelling wasn't one of
the oldest arts of all.

JTW
3903


From: David Ehrenstein
Date: Mon Nov 10, 2003 1:19am
Subject: Re: Re: Pretty good use of SF locations by neither Hitchcock nor Daves
 
"Where does this
distinction come from?"

Pure unadulterated snobbery wedded to a disinclination
to regard "the artist" as anything less than God-like.

--- jaketwilson wrote:


__________________________________
Do you Yahoo!?
Protect your identity with Yahoo! Mail AddressGuard
http://antispam.yahoo.com/whatsnewfree
3904


From: David Ehrenstein
Date: Mon Nov 10, 2003 1:24am
Subject: Re: Re: France We Love You
 
"An American movie is described as a
comedy, a drama, a western, whatever; a foreign movie
is just
described as "foreign". That tells it all..."

You got it! And sometimes it's like pulling teeth to
get people to see a movie that deals with things that
deeply concern them because it's "foreign."

BTW, on my first trip to Paris in 83 I found myself
deposited by taxi on the Champs-Elysee at the precise
spot where Fred Astaire began the "Bonjour Paris"
number in "Funny Face." Inspired, but woefully
jet-lagged, I started to go into a chorus of it -- and
keeled right over onto the sidewalk.

--- jpcoursodon wrote:


__________________________________
Do you Yahoo!?
Protect your identity with Yahoo! Mail AddressGuard
http://antispam.yahoo.com/whatsnewfree
3905


From: Robert Keser
Date: Mon Nov 10, 2003 1:30am
Subject: Re: France We Love You
 
To me, Minnelli was a figure who repeatedly honored French culture
(despite the fostering of national stereotypes that involved) and
engaged European culture in general (even Brigadoon is in
Europe!). That certainly seems out-of-fashion in present-day
America, which is getting increasingly insular and anti-intellectual
by the day, as David rightly notes. I also prefer Funny Face,
but we have to take what we can get nowadays.

(Cukor said that Gigi was "too ooh-la-la" for him, and Leslie
Caron reported that her friends in Paris would approach her
with visible embarrassment and tell her how sorry they were
about Gigi).

--Robert Keser
>
by@yahoogroups.com, "jpcoursodon" wrote:
> I like Minnelli but I don't think he is what we need. An American
in
> Paris is one of my least favorite musicals (despite the stunning
> ballet). At least it didn't have Maurice Chevalier, like the
> awful "Gigi", but Guetary isn't much better. I'll take "Funny face"
> any time. "All good Americans should come here to die" goes the
> song "Bonjour Paris".
3906


From: Tosh
Date: Mon Nov 10, 2003 1:39am
Subject: Re: France We Love You
 
I am trying to do my part by only putting out ONLY French literature
in the U.S.! Viva Vian, Gainsbourg and Debord!
--
Tosh Berman
TamTam Books
http://www.tamtambooks.com
3907


From: jpcoursodon
Date: Mon Nov 10, 2003 1:34am
Subject: Re: France We Love You
 
David, this sounds to good to be true. And think that I have
walked on that very spot thousands of times and never started into a
chorus of the song.
But surely (can I call you surely?) you asked the cab to deposit
you at that very spot...
JPC


--- In a_film_by@yahoogroups.com, David Ehrenstein
wrote:
> "An American movie is described as a
> comedy, a drama, a western, whatever; a foreign movie
> is just
> described as "foreign". That tells it all..."
>
> You got it! And sometimes it's like pulling teeth to
> get people to see a movie that deals with things that
> deeply concern them because it's "foreign."
>
> BTW, on my first trip to Paris in 83 I found myself
> deposited by taxi on the Champs-Elysee at the precise
> spot where Fred Astaire began the "Bonjour Paris"
> number in "Funny Face." Inspired, but woefully
> jet-lagged, I started to go into a chorus of it -- and
> keeled right over onto the sidewalk.
>
> --- jpcoursodon wrote:
>
>
> __________________________________
> Do you Yahoo!?
> Protect your identity with Yahoo! Mail AddressGuard
> http://antispam.yahoo.com/whatsnewfree
3908


From: David Ehrenstein
Date: Mon Nov 10, 2003 1:41am
Subject: Re: Re: France We Love You
 
"But surely (can I call you surely?) you asked the cab
to deposit
you at that very spot..."

Actuallyi didn't. Itwas sheer chance -- which I took
as an omen. That was a great first trip. I saw
Chereau's production of Genet's "The Screens" with
Maria Casares and Duras' "Savannah Bay" with Bulle
Ogier and Madeleine Renaud.

And at the movies, Rozier's "Maine Ocean" which is
literally unknown in the U.S.

--- jpcoursodon wrote:


__________________________________
Do you Yahoo!?
Protect your identity with Yahoo! Mail AddressGuard
http://antispam.yahoo.com/whatsnewfree
3909


From: jpcoursodon
Date: Mon Nov 10, 2003 1:41am
Subject: Re: France We Love You
 
-
How can you be French and not feel embarrassed by a movie
like "Gigi"? Of course you might enjoy it as camp, and/or with the
help of a strong dose of "irony" -- "au seconde degre" as the French
say.

Brigadoon -- a dismal failure -- is NOT in Europe, as any one British
will indignantly point out.
JPC

-- In a_film_by@yahoogroups.com, "Robert Keser" wrote:
> To me, Minnelli was a figure who repeatedly honored French culture
> (despite the fostering of national stereotypes that involved) and
> engaged European culture in general (even Brigadoon is in
> Europe!). That certainly seems out-of-fashion in present-day
> America, which is getting increasingly insular and anti-
intellectual
> by the day, as David rightly notes. I also prefer Funny Face,
> but we have to take what we can get nowadays.
>
> (Cukor said that Gigi was "too ooh-la-la" for him, and Leslie
> Caron reported that her friends in Paris would approach her
> with visible embarrassment and tell her how sorry they were
> about Gigi).
>
> --Robert Keser
> >
> by@yahoogroups.com, "jpcoursodon" wrote:
> > I like Minnelli but I don't think he is what we need. An American
> in
> > Paris is one of my least favorite musicals (despite the stunning
> > ballet). At least it didn't have Maurice Chevalier, like the
> > awful "Gigi", but Guetary isn't much better. I'll take "Funny
face"
> > any time. "All good Americans should come here to die" goes the
> > song "Bonjour Paris".
3910


From: Fred Camper
Date: Mon Nov 10, 2003 1:57am
Subject: Re: Re: Pretty good use of SF locations by neither Hitchcock nor Daves
 
jaketwilson wrote:

>....Legitimately or not, much art does presume
>upon and exploit our shared capacity for such all-too-human emotions
>as attraction to physical beauty, imaginative sympathy for suffering,
>and curiosity about future events....
>

Yes, but in my view, a very bad film can do those things very well,
summoning up in me the same emotions summoned by, for example, a violent
argument between two people on a street.

> ...as if storytelling wasn't one of the oldest arts of all.
>
>
And what makes it an art in literature is the way the story is told, the
use of language, not the story itself. And what makes narrative film an
art is the *way* the story is filmed, not the themes or the emotions
that can be identified therein.

This is my view, anyway, and this is why I remain supsicious of
justifying a film based on the emotions produced by the narrative or the
actors.

- Fred
3911


From: Robert Keser
Date: Mon Nov 10, 2003 1:58am
Subject: Re: France We Love You
 
Brigadoon is NOT in Europe? Where else would Cyd Charisse
struggle with a Scottish burr and the men would all wear kilts?
(Hmmm. Insert quip here).

Anyway, I'm quite fond of Minnelli's fluent and lyrical sequence
where all the villagers pursue the rebel to the borders of Brigadoon,
in the grand tradition of his fantasia scenes.

--Robert Keser

--- In a_film_by@yahoogroups.com, "jpcoursodon"
wrote:
>
> Brigadoon -- a dismal failure -- is NOT in Europe, as any one
British
> will indignantly point out.
> JPC
>
> -- In a_film_by@yahoogroups.com, "Robert Keser"
wrote:
> > To me, Minnelli was a figure who repeatedly honored French
culture
> > (despite the fostering of national stereotypes that involved) and
> > engaged European culture in general (even Brigadoon is in
> > Europe!).
3912


From: filipefurtado
Date: Mon Nov 10, 2003 1:43am
Subject: Re: Re: France We Love You
 
>The problem with this country is its
> incredibly ethnocentric attitude. An American movie is descr
ibed as a
> comedy, a drama, a western, whatever; a foreign movie is jus
t
> described as "foreign". That tells it all...
>

Well, in Brazil, brazilian movies are known as... well,
brazilian movies, a very weird and esoteric entity, that
should be keep in a completly different world from all the
other movies. Seriously, brazilian distributors even avoid
open two brazilian films in the same week (more or less like
an american studio avoiding two open two romantic comedies in
the same week...).

Filipe


---
Acabe com aquelas janelinhas que pulam na sua tela.
AntiPop-up UOL - … grŠtis!
http://antipopup.uol.com.br
3913


From: Zach Campbell
Date: Mon Nov 10, 2003 2:17am
Subject: Re: Pretty good use of SF locations by neither Hitchcock nor Daves
 
Fred wrote:
> Yes, but in my view, a very bad film can do those things very well,
> summoning up in me the same emotions summoned by, for example, a
violent
> argument between two people on a street.

And when a very great film does these things as part of its aesthetic-
narrative strategy, wouldn't it be wise to acknowledge that? I agree
(and don't think anyone here is really disputing) that it's a bit
misguided to endorse a film to others purely on the grounds that
it's 'very moving,' as this in itself says little about the work in
question. But the way a film moves a viewer, or the multiple
possibilities in which a single scene might move a viewer, can be all
too important. It is *impossible* to discuss A.I. fruitfully, for
instance, if one does not discuss how the film structures our
sympathies, prejudices, assumptions, and other emotional investments.

> And what makes it an art in literature is the way the story is
> told, the use of language, not the story itself. And what makes
> narrative film an art is the *way* the story is filmed, not the
> themes or the emotions that can be identified therein.

I wonder if this is a question of 'form over content' in opposition
to 'form creates content,' two formalist-friendly positions on the
same wavelength but in other ways quite different. Is the "story
itself" really that separable from "the way the story is told"? I'm
not so sure it is anymore ...

--Zach
3914


From: Tag Gallagher
Date: Mon Nov 10, 2003 2:36am
Subject: Re: Re: France We Love You
 
Why no one speak of LUST FOR LIFE?
3915


From: jpcoursodon
Date: Mon Nov 10, 2003 3:01am
Subject: Re: France We Love You
 
--- In a_film_by@yahoogroups.com, Tag Gallagher wrote:
>

Why no one speak of LUST FOR LIFE?


Great movie. Off topic. Tag, I don't want to get carried away.
Don't we have other fish to fry right now?
3916


From: jaketwilson
Date: Mon Nov 10, 2003 3:07am
Subject: films & arguments (was: SF locations)
 
--- In a_film_by@yahoogroups.com, Fred Camper wrote:
> jaketwilson wrote:
>
> >....Legitimately or not, much art does presume
> >upon and exploit our shared capacity for such all-too-human
emotions
> >as attraction to physical beauty, imaginative sympathy for
suffering,
> >and curiosity about future events....
> >
>
> Yes, but in my view, a very bad film can do those things very well,
> summoning up in me the same emotions summoned by, for example, a
violent
> argument between two people on a street.

I can certainly imagine myself being touched, horrified or amused by
an argument in the street. I might even try writing a story as a way
of sharing my impressions with others.

Similarly, there is visual beauty and complexity in nature as well as
in movies. So what? Why does this mean some kinds of experiences are
valuable and others worthless?

JTW
3917


From: Fred Camper
Date: Mon Nov 10, 2003 3:12am
Subject: Re: Re: Pretty good use of SF locations (now form/content in narrative film)
 
Zach,

Of course my position is stated in an oversimplified way. "Form over
content," "form creates content," "form does a complicated
interdependent dance with content each of them influencing and actively
creating each other" -- I agree with all of these depending on the film,
my mood, and who or what I'm responding to. As you know, in my own
writing on narrative films I emphasize (in my own auto-critique,
excessively) the relationship of the style to the story.

But maybe my trouble with "A.I." is that it does depend so much on the
way it "structures our sympathies." That is, I think there may be a
difference between me and many others here. If the way it structures our
sympathies isn't a whole lot different from the way a live theater
version might do so, if the "way" doesn't depend on the compositions
being much more than just lovely to look at, then it's not going to
float my boat -- and it didn't. A lot of the writing on Hollywood films
I read, here and elsewhere, amounts to descriptions of moods evoked, and
this is where I wonder if that's all there is to those films. Please
don't misunderstand me -- I'm just expressing a friendly difference with
others here, even though my tone when doing so tends to acquire a
certain religious fervor. But I am in favor of multiple religions -- in
our group and in our country.

- Fred
3918


From: Fred Camper
Date: Mon Nov 10, 2003 3:21am
Subject: Re: films & arguments (was: SF locations)
 
jaketwilson wrote:

>-
>I can certainly imagine myself being touched, horrified or amused by
>an argument in the street....there is visual beauty and complexity in nature as well as in movies. So what? Why does this mean some kinds of experiences are valuable and others worthless?
>
>
>
Because a picture of nature in a movie can never equal the beauty of
actual nature if all one does is take a picture of it. Seeing nature
whole, walking in wilderness, living in nature, is an experience that
can never be captured on film, and certainly not by simply making
pictures of those things. Similarly, the excitement and danger of seeing
an argument on the street -- I was thinking of a nearly violent one I
witnessed between what I took to be a pimp and his drug-addled
prostitute -- is different from film too, not the least because it's
"live" and conveys a different kind of risk.

I'm advocating a modernist position that cinema shouldn't try to
duplicate other kinds of experiences, that art should be true to its
materials. A filmmaker as allegedly characrter-centered as Howard Hawks
does this through composition, lighting, and editing rhythms: watching a
Hawks film is not the same thing as spending time with friends. A great
film of an argument on a street would achieve greatness by, for example,
using unstable Fullerian editing and camera movements to create uniquely
cinematic, film-aesthetic emotions. And those emotions are different
from emotions experienced in "real life," though they are certainly
connected too. One example: the sudden eruption of violence between the
Troy Donahue and Susan Kohner characters in Sirk's "Imitation of Life."
A great film of nature would try to capture the essentials of its
structure, or some aspects of natural processes, not simply take
pictures of it. And in doing so, it would do so through cinematic means.
See my review of the films of Christ Welsby on my Web site for what I
take to be one example of this.

- Fred
 
3919


From: Tag Gallagher
Date: Mon Nov 10, 2003 3:44am
Subject: Re: Re: France We Love You
 
Maybe I missed the topic. I thought it had something to do with
Minnelli's visions of France.


jpcoursodon wrote:

> --- In a_film_by@yahoogroups.com, Tag Gallagher wrote:
> >
>
> Why no one speak of LUST FOR LIFE?
>
>
> Great movie. Off topic. Tag, I don't want to get carried away.
> Don't we have other fish to fry right now?
>
>

 


3920


From: Robert Keser
Date: Mon Nov 10, 2003 4:12am
Subject: Re: France We Love You
 
The topic was indeed Minnelli's visions of France (but maybe
Lust For Life had too much about Belgium!) That film, though,
certainly puts the lie to any idea of Minnelli romanticizing the
country. The scenes of Van Gogh ministering to the mining
workers are quite terrifyingly bleak and gritty with hopelessness,
just as Madame Bovary's village existence seems emotionally
arid and stunted. I've never found Gigi as offensive as other others
do, partly because I see it as proceeding from the same critical
place, only taking off on absurdly colorful flights of musical fancy
and character fantasy. Then again, I also think of the autumn
leaves swirling decoratively around the grounds of Versailles in
The Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse...

--Robert Keser

--- In a_film_by@yahoogroups.com, Tag Gallagher wrote:
> Maybe I missed the topic. I thought it had something to do with
> Minnelli's visions of France.
>
>
> jpcoursodon wrote:
>
> > --- In a_film_by@yahoogroups.com, Tag Gallagher wrote:
> > >
> >
> > Why no one speak of LUST FOR LIFE?
> >
> >
> > Great movie. Off topic. Tag, I don't want to get carried away.
> > Don't we have other fish to fry right now?
> >
> >
3921


From:
Date: Sun Nov 9, 2003 11:26pm
Subject: A formalist's thoughts on formalism
 
I think some of our non-formalists (whose opinions, incidentally, I have
nothing but respect for; Jake is one of the smartest guys I know) probably get a
little nervous when I start floating out ideas like "I have no trouble zoning
out on [story and character] and simply relating to the film as a profoundly
beautiful work of visual art." And, I don't know, they probably have a right to
get nervous in that this is probably pretty radical and I wouldn't
necessarily recommend looking at a film you've never seen before this way.

I'm trying in my own head to pin down what is MOST important in film art. I
don't think that the things found in a screenplay - whether they're characters
or plots or themes - are as important as the things a director does. That
makes me an auteurist. But at an even finer level of analysis, I don't think
that ALL of the things a director does are equally important. For me, the MOST
important thing a director does is to create a world ("a way of seeing" is
Fred's expression, I think) through mise-en-scene. I suppose that makes me a
formalist (though we might need a better term than this, I'm not sure.) Now I
know that Fred and others have said before that when you're dealing with a
narrative film on the level of a "7 Women" or "Ugetsu" or "Chimes at Midnight" (my
selections) it's going to be tough to separate any of the elements in them.
But my gut tells me that it is possible to say, yes, Welles' mise-en-scene is
ultimately more vital to his film's greatness than the performances or even the
plot - I select this example because I am continually awed by the
performances in "Chimes at Midnight" and because I find the Hal-Falstaff relationship to
be one of the most moving in literature. And yet I still recognize that, at
least for me, the film would not be capital-G Great if it wasn't for Welles'
mise-en-scene. Come to think of it, Shakespeare is a useful example of how
great stories seldom make great films; I can count the great films made from
Shakespeare on one hand!

I'm drifting off the original point I was making in my response to David. I
wrote that I can appreciate "Vertigo" on a "visual" level alone. And, to
Zach, I guess I'd define "visual" as the compositions (which includes the lighting
and the blocking of the actors and objects), the camera moves, and the way
compositions bounce off each other through editing. I guess I'm losing
something by looking at the film this way, but I wonder how much? I keep thinking of
Tag's comment about how a film's story is the director's excuse to shoot off
into other galaxies. When you know a film very well, what's wrong with just
spending time in those galaxies?

The past year has been a real period of growth for me both in terms of the
breadth of films I've seen (this was a year where I saw, for the first time,
most of the late Premingers, the last few Walshes, and a few important ones from
the '40s, virtually the whole filmography of Mulligan, some of the key '50s
Cukors, etc., etc.) and in terms of how I look at film. Mind you, I've been an
auteurist virtually since day one, but I think I have over the past year
experienced something of a transformation similar to the one Jaime described in
relation to "Our Daily Bread."

Peter


[Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
3922


From:
Date: Sun Nov 9, 2003 11:34pm
Subject: Woody Allen's September
 
In a message dated 11/8/2003 14:26:28 Eastern Standard Time,
jpcoursodon@y... writes:

> I did -- in "50 ans de cinema americain" although I called
> it "minor" and more of an exercise than an achievement. I wrote one
> could watch it several times without getting bored. I should watch it
> again!
>

It's funny that this film should come up in the midst of another one of our
group's discussions of form vs. content, because "September" is a movie where
I'm actually not sure that the dialogue and story are all that good, yet I
think the movie nearly achieves greatness on a few occasions. I remember thinking
when I first saw it that Allen had evolved greatly in his blocking of actors
and staging of scenes and that he was helped in this department by the spatial
confinement of the film: it's all set in one house, so he was kind of forced
to be creative and not allow the thing to turn into a photographed play. He
seemed to really get expressive in terms of positioning the actors and camera
in relation to the emotions being expressed in a scene. I also remember the
blackout and thunderstorm which occurs midway through as being effective in this
sense. On a purely aesthetic level, it's also a very beautiful film. Carlo
Di Palma has identified it as the favorite film he photographed for Allen.
How did you defend the film in your book, JP?

I also agree with everything Damien wrote about "Everyone Says I Love You."
He's exactly right about the film's warmth towards its characters. This is
why Allen's '90s work is so strange (and fascinating) for me; he makes a film as
generous as "Everyone Says" and then follows it with a work as bitter as
"Deconstructing Harry."

Peter


[Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
3923


From: Fred Camper
Date: Mon Nov 10, 2003 4:31am
Subject: Group business: a slightly revised Statement of Purpose
 
We have revised our group's Statement of Purpose a little bit. The
revision was looked at by the other five "founding members" of our group
(the people who were in on the initial email discussions that led to our
founding), and we made a change based on the comments of one of them.
The changes are intended mostly for new members; our group doesn't lack
for members or posts, and we wanted to refine things a little bit. No
one currently posting should feel out of line even if you've posted
something at odds with the statement. As moderators we intend to
continue to enforce the rule against personal attacks on anyone in or
out of the group, but we will not likely go after an occasional post
that doesn't jibe perfectly with the statement, and in the interest of
free-ranging discussions are not going to become overly aggressive
moderators.

If you're interested, please take a look at the proposed new statement
at http://www.fredcamper.com/T/Purpose.html. If we don't hear any
persuasive objections in a week, it will become our new statement, and
prospective members will be referred to it. The current statement can
still be found in the "files" section of the group's Web site.

Fred Camper and Peter Tonguette
Your friendly moderators
3924


From: jerome_gerber
Date: Mon Nov 10, 2003 5:09am
Subject: Re: Group business: a slightly revised Statement of Purpose
 
Fred...you have a period at the end of html which is not letting us
link in...I'm there once it's removed...Jerry--- In
a_film_by@yahoogroups.com, Fred Camper wrote:
> We have revised our group's Statement of Purpose a little bit.
The
> revision was looked at by the other five "founding members" of
our group
> (the people who were in on the initial email discussions that
led to our
> founding), and we made a change based on the comments of
one of them.
> The changes are intended mostly for new members; our group
doesn't lack
> for members or posts, and we wanted to refine things a little
bit. No
> one currently posting should feel out of line even if you've
posted
> something at odds with the statement. As moderators we
intend to
> continue to enforce the rule against personal attacks on
anyone in or
> out of the group, but we will not likely go after an occasional
post
> that doesn't jibe perfectly with the statement, and in the interest
of
> free-ranging discussions are not going to become overly
aggressive
> moderators.
>
> If you're interested, please take a look at the proposed new
statement
> at http://www.fredcamper.com/T/Purpose.html. If we don't hear
any
> persuasive objections in a week, it will become our new
statement, and
> prospective members will be referred to it. The current
statement can
> still be found in the "files" section of the group's Web site.
>
> Fred Camper and Peter Tonguette
> Your friendly moderators
3925


From: Fred Camper
Date: Mon Nov 10, 2003 5:24am
Subject: Re: Re: Group business: a slightly revised Statement of Purpose
 
jerome_gerber wrote:

>Fred...you have a period at the end of html
>
Thanks; I keep forgetting that Yahoo software means you shouldn't put
anything right after a url. Others who post urls here should bear that
in mind.

The url for the revised statement is
http://www.fredcamper.com/T/Purpose.html

- Fred
3926


From: David Ehrenstein
Date: Mon Nov 10, 2003 5:31am
Subject: Re: A formalist's thoughts on formalism
 
"I keep thinking of
> Tag's comment about how a film's story is the
> director's excuse to shoot off
> into other galaxies. When you know a film very
> well, what's wrong with just
> spending time in those galaxies? "

Which is precisely what happens in "Looney Tunes --
Back in Action."

When I started seriously devouring and writing about
film, back in the mid-60's, I was a die-hard auteurist
with one foot firmly planted in the avant-garde. Today
my ideas about auteurism, and commercial film in
general, have changed, and the a-g scene I knew has
almost completely evaporated.

Lately I've been tending to regard worthwhile films on
a one-by-one basis, no matter who made them. Even in
the cases of filmmakers towards whom I'm very deeply
committed (Chereau, Rivette, Todd Haynes, Gus Van
Sant, Wong Kar Wai, Chris Marker, Alain Resnais ) it's
still a step-by-step process.

A lot of this is related to my growing taste for
slowing down to savor the details.

--- ptonguette@a... wrote:


__________________________________
Do you Yahoo!?
Protect your identity with Yahoo! Mail AddressGuard
http://antispam.yahoo.com/whatsnewfree
3927


From: George Robinson
Date: Mon Nov 10, 2003 6:00am
Subject: Re: Re: France We Love You
 
And I try to do my part by fighting against that gang of criminal idiots in
Washington.

The man who does not read good books
has no advantage over the man who cannot read them.
--Mark Twain
3928


From: Damien Bona
Date: Mon Nov 10, 2003 6:09am
Subject: Re: France: We Love You!
 
--- In a_film_by@yahoogroups.com, MG4273@a... wrote:
> The current political climate will soon pass - and the sooner the
better!
> The deep love Americans have for France will endure.


Mike, like you I am a proud, unabashed Francophile. DUring the
period leading up to Bush's war on the Iraqi people, I made several
television appearances (as it was also Oscar season). At the time, as
you undoubtedly remember, the yahoos and jingoists in the media (not
to mention the spineless politicians) were all festooning their
lapels with American flag pins. I made my own statement by wearing a
French flag pin.

I remember my friends and I laughing with disbelief that we were
suddenly considering the heretofore odious Jacques Chiras to be a
hero.

Oh, and along with the freedom fried politicians, let's not forget
the idiotic restaurant owners who poured their bottles of French wine
down the drain. Not only was that a crime against nature in and of
itself, but the fools had already paid for the wine so they were only
spiting themselves.


My first time in Paris, my most exciting film site visit was seeing
the steps in front of Sacre-Couer, where Tony Curtis and Jack Lemmon
drove their cars in Blake Edwards's The Great Race. My favorite
Funny Face location was the staircase in the Louvre Audrey Hepburn
glides down. And speaking of Audrey, I have pictures of myself re-
enacting the finale of Charade at Palais Royale.
3929


From: Damien Bona
Date: Mon Nov 10, 2003 6:28am
Subject: Re: Spielberg
 
--- In a_film_by@yahoogroups.com, ptonguette@a... wrote:
I know that I sometimes jot off posts
> here without detailing why a film is aesthetically great. And yet
I basically
> think of myself as a formalist in that the elements of a movie's
form are the
> things that matter most to me. So when I talk about the "other
stuff" in a
> film I regard as great - the themes, the emotions, the
performances, whatever - I
> may be getting a little lazy, but rest assurred that I feel I could
defend
> that film aesthetically.
>

Well-stated, Peter. My feeling regarding A Film By has always been
that the members of the group are all pretty much in the same boat in
terms of how we look at movies (no matter what the differences in our
aesthetic judgments may be -- and every day it becomes more clear
that there are some great gulfs between people here, auteurists all
though we may be) And so, if a film is called "moving," I assume
that it's understood that the work is moving because of the
director's mise-en-scene, pacing, exploration of themes, etc. and not
because of an inherent emotional content in the material. Otherwise,
we might well be singing the praises of Fred W. WIlcox and Lassie
Come Home.

I don't think it's due to laziness that we often don't talk about
specific formal elements. It's the nature of the Internet and a
matter of budgeting one's time that we can't in a post get into as
much specific detail as we would in a journal article. And so within
this group, I think it's fine if someone praises a movie for being
emotionally affecting without delving into, say, the camera movements
that work to heighten that reaction.
3930


From: Damien Bona
Date: Mon Nov 10, 2003 6:40am
Subject: Brigadoon
 
--- In a_film_by@yahoogroups.com, "Robert Keser" wrote:
>
> Anyway, I'm quite fond of Minnelli's fluent and lyrical sequence
> where all the villagers pursue the rebel to the borders of
Brigadoon,
> in the grand tradition of his fantasia scenes.
>


I love Brigadoon and think it's one of Minnelli's most beautiful
(both visually and emotionally), heartfelt and personal works.

In its insularity, the land of Brigadoon itself is an apt metaphor
for the artistic/sensitive temperament Minnelli scrutinizes in so
many of his pictures. Indeed, the sequence of Gene Kelly back in New
York sitting in a bar but in his own dream world, oblivious to the
desperate boisterousness around him, can be seen at the perfect
capsulization of Minnelli's entire ouevre.

Plus, there's that most glorious of all glorious Lerner & Loewe
scores.
3931


From: Yoel Meranda
Date: Mon Nov 10, 2003 6:59am
Subject: "elephant" ?
 
I've seen elephant today and I think it's almost worthless.
But why the title 'elephant'?

yoel
3932


From: jaketwilson
Date: Mon Nov 10, 2003 7:42am
Subject: Re: films & arguments (was: SF locations)
 
--- In a_film_by@yahoogroups.com, Fred Camper wrote:

> I'm advocating a modernist position that cinema shouldn't try to
> duplicate other kinds of experiences, that art should be true to
its materials. A filmmaker as allegedly characrter-centered as Howard
Hawks does this through composition, lighting, and editing rhythms:
> watching a Hawks film is not the same thing as spending time with
friends. A great film of an argument on a street would achieve
> greatness by, for example, using unstable Fullerian editing and
camera movements to create uniquely cinematic, film-aesthetic
emotions. And those emotions are different from emotions experienced
> in "real life," though they are certainly connected too.

Well...

I imagine that meeting Drew Barrymore in real life would be a very
different experience from watching any of her films, and seeing her
act in a play would be different again. Which suggests that Drew
Barrymore's screen presence is a artistic resource specific to cinema.

But then one could argue that ALL the emotions we experience while
watching films are, by definition, "cinematic" -- what else could
they be? And how do we decide which techniques and approaches
are "uniquely cinematic" and which aren't? And assuming the filmmaker
succeeds in moving or delighting us, why should it matter whether or
not comparable results could have been achieved in another medium? I
don't think A.I. would work as a play, but I can imagine the story
retaining some of its power as, say, a graphic novel: saying this
proves it isn't "cinema" is like saying poems are better than novels
because novels can be translated into other languages.

JTW

PS: Peter, thanks for the compliment in your post on formalism!
Obviously, this is a complex topic we're not likely to exhaust in a
hurry...
3933


From: Rick Segreda
Date: Mon Nov 10, 2003 8:16am
Subject: Re: France We Love You...and they love AND hate us.
 
Ah, the French...one moment they're blasting us for being more Napoleonic than their own Napoleon, while at the same time expressing a wild enthusiasm for Jerry Lewis and Mickey Rourke that surpasses sanity.

On the other hand (and shore), I am not so sure that American Francophilia will ever extend to the hoi-poloi. Which is regrettable, but DeToqueville would probably understand.




---------------------------------
Do you Yahoo!?
Protect your identity with Yahoo! Mail AddressGuard

[Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
3934


From: Rick Segreda
Date: Mon Nov 10, 2003 8:23am
Subject: Re: Pretty good use of SF locations by neither Hitchcock nor Daves
 
I always thought Copolla's "The Rain People" was a neglected gem as far as San Francisco movies go. Then there's Richard Lester's great Petulia, which also featured Shirely Knight.

A not bad San Francisco movie is something I saw years ago called "The Presidio," with Mark Harmon and Sean Connery. Not great, but not bad either.


---------------------------------
Do you Yahoo!?
Protect your identity with Yahoo! Mail AddressGuard

[Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
3935


From: Damien Bona
Date: Mon Nov 10, 2003 8:34am
Subject: Re: SF Locations
 
--- In a_film_by@yahoogroups.com, MG4273@a... wrote:
> PS I never could enjoy "The Streets of San Francisco" or any other
of the
> "Quinn Martin Productions" TV crime shows. They were inoffensive -
but deadly
> dull. I tended to like more comic crime shows - "Burke's
Law", "Riptide",
> "Moonlighting", "Simon and Simon", "Remington Steele".

I always liked The Streets Of San Francisco because even though it
was a QUinn Martin cop show, it had two very liberal, McGovern-
supporting actors in the leads. To the teenage me, this made the
show very cool.

Mike, were you a fan of Harry O?

-- Damien
3936


From: Rick Segreda
Date: Mon Nov 10, 2003 8:41am
Subject: Re: Woody Allen's September
 
I liked "Everyone Says" so much I even bought the CD and hummed my way through Julia Robert's flat contralto. And yes, I liked it...but Damien and Peter are hitting on something that resonates with my feelings about Woody. I think Woody's great when he's warm, generous, and even sentimental (Annie Hall, Manhattan, Zelig, Hannah & Her Sisters, Radio Days) and pretty repellant when he's self-pitying, elitist, and cynical (Stardust Memories, Deconstructing Harry).

Maureen Dowd recently did a pretty devastating analysis of Woody's desperate spiritual and aesthetic devolution in this late stage of his life and career, wherebye Woody is now selling himself out to stay afloat professionally in a manner that in "Manhattan" (and in interviews back then) he swore he never would.

It's sad, and I hope that he reclaims enough of his own artistic integrity so that his next project will remind us why we ever put money down to see a Woody Allen movie in the first place.




"I also agree with everything Damien wrote about' Everyone Says I Love You.'
He's exactly right about the film's warmth towards its characters. This is
why Allen's '90s work is so strange (and fascinating) for me; he makes a film as
generous as 'Everyone Says' and then follows it with a work as bitter as
'Deconstructing Harry.'"

Peter



---------------------------------
Do you Yahoo!?
Protect your identity with Yahoo! Mail AddressGuard

[Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
3937


From: Rick Segreda
Date: Mon Nov 10, 2003 8:51am
Subject: SF Locations: Television
 
I wasn't gonna mention television, but, oh well: "Tales of the City," which self-consciously referenced Hitch's mise-en-scene from "Vertigo."

I was always a fan of "Streets of San Francisco," with my adolescent gay heart going pitter-patter for Michael Douglas. The show itself holds up pretty well; I recently watched a re-run and I was surprised at how good the writing and acting were. And who can forget John Davidson as a homocidal drag queen? (Talk about having a bad hair day!)



Damien Bona wrote:
--- In a_film_by@yahoogroups.com, MG4273@a... wrote:
> PS I never could enjoy "The Streets of San Francisco" or any other
of the
> "Quinn Martin Productions" TV crime shows. They were inoffensive -
but deadly
> dull. I tended to like more comic crime shows - "Burke's
Law", "Riptide",
> "Moonlighting", "Simon and Simon", "Remington Steele".

I always liked The Streets Of San Francisco because even though it
was a QUinn Martin cop show, it had two very liberal, McGovern-
supporting actors in the leads. To the teenage me, this made the
show very cool.

Mike, were you a fan of Harry O?

-- Damien


Yahoo! Groups SponsorADVERTISEMENT

To unsubscribe from this group, send an email to:
a_film_by-unsubscribe@yahoogroups.com



Your use of Yahoo! Groups is subject to the Yahoo! Terms of Service.


---------------------------------
Do you Yahoo!?
Protect your identity with Yahoo! Mail AddressGuard

[Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
3938


From: Jaime N. Christley
Date: Mon Nov 10, 2003 8:53am
Subject: Re: France We Love You...and they love AND hate us.
 
> expressing a wild enthusiasm for Jerry Lewis ... that
> surpasses sanity.

Hmm, are you sure you can accurately say this about "the French"?
That is, all of them? Or most of them? Or even the most vocal of
French cultural commentators?

I know a number of things: that Godard and others have praised his
filmmaking (and his films are more than praiseworthy), that his films
gross more in Europe than in the U.S., and that he was awarded the
Legion of Honor in 1984. However, I haven't come across any more
evidence that they love him insanely - unless Jay Leno jokes count as
evidence - and whenever people are asked what they mean when they use
they mention the "fact" that "the French love Jerry Lewis," they
usually clam up. (Jonathan Rosenbaum has hinted at the idea that
they may view Lewis' onscreen persona(s) as that of the
representative American; this idea is far more fascinating than
simply saying "the French love Jerry Lewis" and leaving it at that.)

A friend of mine recently wrote a two-part essay on Lewis for an
independent American magazine called "The Believer." I mentioned it
on a_film_by a while back but nobody seemed interested. One of his
main ideas was that, even if the French loved Jer as much as everyone
insists that they do, perhaps it's time for America to try and
reclaim him as a national icon, i.e. to match that love. I suspect
that won't even begin to happen until after his death, if it happens
at all. Oh well, he's an icon to me, for a lot of great things.

-Jaime
3939


From: jaketwilson
Date: Mon Nov 10, 2003 11:39am
Subject: Re: France We Love You...and they love AND hate us.
 
> A friend of mine recently wrote a two-part essay on Lewis for an
> independent American magazine called "The Believer." I mentioned
it
> on a_film_by a while back but nobody seemed interested.

Jaime, that reminds me -- thanks to your tip I picked up a copy of
THE BELIEVER in a Melbourne bookstore and read part 1 of your pal's
essay. I thought it was terrific, as is Jerry, who thanks to regular
Saturday afternoon TV screenings remains reasonably popular over here.

If Americans are still embarrassed by him, why do they tolerate Adam
Sandler?

JTW
3940


From: Jaime N. Christley
Date: Mon Nov 10, 2003 0:00pm
Subject: Re: Jerry Lewis [was France We Love You]
 
> Jaime, that reminds me -- thanks to your tip I picked up a copy of
> THE BELIEVER in a Melbourne bookstore and read part 1 of your pal's
> essay. I thought it was terrific, as is Jerry, who thanks to
> regular
> Saturday afternoon TV screenings remains reasonably popular over
> here.

That's terrific news Jake, and I'll pass on the kind word to the
writer.

> If Americans are still embarrassed by him, why do they tolerate
> Adam Sandler?

There are a couple of movies where I like Sandler, but the answer is
probably that he isn't strong enough of a comedian, or on-screen
presence, to embarrass anybody.

-Jaime
3941


From: joe_mcelhaney
Date: Mon Nov 10, 2003 0:20pm
Subject: gigi/brigadoon
 
Is GIGI really that detested in France? I've always loved the film
(as well as AN AMERICAN IN PARIS -- I cannot go along with the
auteurist tendency to toss both of these films out of the Minnelli
canon). However, I have certainly never felt that GIGI was
attempting to present itself as some kind of authentic picture of
French life but rather as an American musical fantasy (often camp in
tone) about that culture. Of course we could endlessly debate the
pros and cons of this somewhat touristic approach and I've met many
Americans (including many of my students) who shudder at the film
although for other reasons -- specifically, I think, the ways in
which the film can be seen as "a patently sexist fantasy about little
girls," as James Naremore has put it. I don't agree with that
reading either but I do think it's symptomatic of the kinds of
misunderstandings that have arisen over the film. But is GIGI any
more "oo-la-la" (as Cukor put it) than, say, FRENCH CAN CAN or ELENA
ET LES HOMMES? Or for that matter FUNNY FACE, which so many people
here seem to prefer? (I don't.) Since Jean-Pierre Coursodon provided
a Leslie Caron quote about her embarrassment in terms of GIGI, I'll
provide another one: In a VILLAGE VOICE interview with Arthur Bell
in the early 1980s she said that GIGI was her favorite film and
Minnelli her favorite director. Is she talking out of both sides of
her mouth, one for the French and one for the Americans?

Alain Resnais is one French fan of GIGI and listed it as such in a
book that was published in the late 1970s, I believe, in which
filmmakers and critics were asked to provide lists of their favorite
films as well as their choice for films which were underrated. GIGI,
if memory serves me correctly, was on Resnais's choice for an
underrated film. Was he perhaps responding to some kind of French
hostility towards GIGI? And does anyone remember this book or
remember its title? It was in a large hardback format. I couldn't
afford it during my undergraduate days and I've been searching for it
ever since I became a rich academic. (In the same book, Rohmer listed
the Mankiewicz CLEOPATRA was an underrated film.) And when I met
Jean-Loup Bourget at a Max Ophuls conference last March he told me
that he loved all of Minnelli, "even THE SANDPIPER." As for AN
AMERICAN IN PARIS, I suppose that many of you saw the recent
interview with Chris Marker in FILM COMMENT in which he claims that
he and Resnais saw the film in London when it came out and that they
loved the film so much they went to see the first showing of it every
day for days afterwards?

I know this is off topic in terms of France, but I also completely
agree with Damien Bona about BRIGADOON, another misunderstood
Minnelli film. Elsaesser's essay on Minnelli (still the best
critical analysis of this cineaste in English) lists it as one of the
three greatest of his musicals, along with THE BAND WAGON and THE
PIRATE. But this is pretty much a lone voice.
3942


From: Robert Keser
Date: Mon Nov 10, 2003 1:09pm
Subject: Re: Woody Allen's September
 
Count me as another supporter of Everyone Says I Love You,
and I also love the CD, especially for the rendition of "Cuddle
Up a Little Closer" in Hindi. I tried showing several of the dance
numbers in a class about the musical, but the more closely one
examines them, the more chaotic and indifferently staged they
seem. However, this may be irrelevant because the movie seems
to operate from an aesthetic that celebrates amateur performance,
relaxed and free from rigorous discipline, what with happily
tone-deaf singing by Drew Barrymore and Julia Roberts. As
Woody Allen's "sweet and lowdown" music often suggests, this
seems like a generosity toward people: EVERYONE can be a star,
EVERYONE can sing and dance, EVERYONE says I love you
(and it's also reflected in the warmth of the equally chaotic
Alda/Hawn household). The final Woody Allen/Goldie Hawn
combination dance/levitation on the Ile Saint Louis seems to
bless this aesthetic with the magic that cinema can create, in
line with the magical events in The Purple Rose of Cairo.

--Robert Keser

--- In a_film_by@yahoogroups.com, Rick Segreda teurwannabe2000@y...> wrote:
> I liked "Everyone Says" so much I even bought the CD and hummed my
way through Julia Robert's flat contralto. And yes, I liked
it...but Damien and Peter are hitting on something that resonates
with my feelings about Woody. I think Woody's great when he's
warm, generous, and even sentimental (Annie Hall, Manhattan, Zelig,
Hannah & Her Sisters, Radio Days) and pretty repellant when
he's self-pitying, elitist, and cynical (Stardust Memories,
Deconstructing Harry).
>
3943


From:
Date: Mon Nov 10, 2003 8:27am
Subject: Quinn Martin Productions; Marvin Chomsky
 
Some thoughts on these TV shows.
1) Karl Malden is an excellent actor, but I always thought he was operating
in an aesthetic vacuum on "The Streets of San Francisco" - an American TV cop
show (1972-1977). This was one of many dramatic series that came out of Quinn
Martin Productions.
2) Each episode of most TV shows have different writers and directors. This
is especially true of hour-long mystery and science fiction shows - the types
of shows that are perhaps closest to traditional narrative feature films.
Because of this, each episode should be judged independently, being the work of a
different director, as well as a different writer, guest cast, etc. I violated
this principle by dismissing the whole series. Still, the random viewings of
various Quinn Martin Production TV shows I've seen over the years tend to be
dull, dull, dull. They are certainly not offensive, in any way, as I made clear
in my previous post, and I certainly have no objection to anyone else enjoying
them. But I've rarely found anything about them to be creative, either.
3) The Quinn Martin Production show I like best was "Banyon" (1972-1973). In
particular, the episode:
"Just Once" (12-27-72) Writer: Mann Rubin Director: Marvin Chomsky.
Chomsky is most famous for his work on the mini-series "Roots" and
"Holocaust". This episode was in a vastly lighter mode. I have not seen it since its
first broadcast, but recall it as a gracefully made work. If TV series were as
easy to see as feature films, episodes like these would probably not have fallen
off most film historians' radar.
Banyon was shot on location in Los Angeles' spectacular Bradbury Building
(built by George Wyman in 1893). It was the finest hour in the early career of
actor Robert Forster, whose career was later revived by Quentin Tarantino.
4) Other people on the list have probably seen more Quinn Martin Productions
than I. I encourage them to specify episodes they found creative or
imaginative.
5) I saw almost nothing of "Harry-O". William L. DeAndrea in "Encylopedia
Mysteriosa" says that it is one of the two best private eye shows in US TV
history.
6) Quinn Martin Productions all showed the whole cast in their roles at the
beginning, in the tradition of early 1930's Warner Brothers films. I always
found this to be a great way to start a movie!

Mike Grost
3944


From: hotlove666
Date: Mon Nov 10, 2003 1:50pm
Subject: Gigi
 
I love eevry film of Minnelli, including The Sandpiper. Bellour's
Analaysis of Film contains a good structural analysis of Gigi.
3945


From: Chris Fujiwara
Date: Mon Nov 10, 2003 2:06pm
Subject: Re: gigi/brigadoon
 
--- In a_film_by@yahoogroups.com, "joe_mcelhaney"
wrote:
>
> Alain Resnais is one French fan of GIGI and listed it as such in a
> book that was published in the late 1970s, I believe, in which
> filmmakers and critics were asked to provide lists of their
favorite
> films as well as their choice for films which were underrated.
GIGI,
> if memory serves me correctly, was on Resnais's choice for an
> underrated film. Was he perhaps responding to some kind of French
> hostility towards GIGI? And does anyone remember this book or
> remember its title? It was in a large hardback format. I couldn't
> afford it during my undergraduate days and I've been searching for
it
> ever since I became a rich academic. (In the same book, Rohmer
listed
> the Mankiewicz CLEOPATRA was an underrated film.) And when I met

The book has the great title The Most Important and Misappreciated
American Films Since the Beginning of Cinema. It was published by the
Royal Film Archive of Belgium in 1978.

It's an incredibly fun book.

However, some corrections. Resnais does not list Gigi among either
his "most important films" or his "misappreciated" ones. (He does
have The Band Wagon on the former list, and, incidentally, Funny Face
on the latter.) Marcel Ophuls listed Gigi as "misappreciated" (and
used an asterisk to indicate that it also belonged to a third
category, that of his favorite films).

Also, Rohmer did not participate, and the index shows no votes for
Mankiewicz's Cleopatra.
3946


From: Chris Fujiwara
Date: Mon Nov 10, 2003 2:22pm
Subject: Re: France We Love You...and they love AND hate us.
 
--- In a_film_by@yahoogroups.com, "Jaime N. Christley"
wrote:

> A friend of mine recently wrote a two-part essay on Lewis for an
> independent American magazine called "The Believer." I mentioned
it
> on a_film_by a while back but nobody seemed interested.

I was very interested, picked up the magazine on your recommendation,
and found B. Kite's "The Jerriad: A Clown Painting," part 1, to be
excellent. I included it in a very short bibliography of writings on
Jerry that will be published with a Great Directors piece going up
later this month (?) on Senses of Cinema.

My only, mild, criticism of the piece - I bring this up only because
it relates to something earlier in this discussion - is that I
believe it's completely unnecessary for Americans writing in praise
of Lewis either to apologize for their enthusiasm or to say in
effect, as your friend does, "The French were right." If we all just
ignore this stupid "French/Lewis" thing, a toothless banality that
condescends both to the nation and the man, it will eventually go
away, as it deserves to have done 30 years ago.
3947


From: Ruy Gardnier
Date: Mon Nov 10, 2003 2:39pm
Subject: Re: "elephant" ?
 
Apparently "Elephant" is the name of the documentary Van Sant used as basis
for his own film.
As for its worthlessness, maybe it would be useful to dwelve into Notes on
the cinematographer.

----- Original Message -----
From: "Yoel Meranda"
To:
Sent: Monday, November 10, 2003 4:59 AM
Subject: [a_film_by] "elephant" ?


> I've seen elephant today and I think it's almost worthless.
> But why the title 'elephant'?
>
> yoel
>
>
>
> To unsubscribe from this group, send an email to:
> a_film_by-unsubscribe@yahoogroups.com
>
>
>
> Your use of Yahoo! Groups is subject to http://docs.yahoo.com/info/terms/
>
>
3948


From: Dan Sallitt
Date: Mon Nov 10, 2003 3:11pm
Subject: Re: "elephant" ?
 
> Apparently "Elephant" is the name of the documentary Van Sant used as basis
> for his own film.

Not a documentary, but an unusual 40-minute 1989 fiction TV film by the
outstanding British director Alan Clarke, who died of cancer not too
long after its airing. Set in Northern Ireland, the film is an almost
wordless series of interludes in which characters who are never
identified move through an urban setting, tracked by Clarke's Steadicam,
until they encounter violence. For the Clarke film, "elephant" meant
"the elephant in the room," the social-political context which the film
omits but which is necessary for the viewer to give the film unity.

Van Sant was inspired by Clarke, but not to the extent of using the
earlier film as a basis. I presume that the threat of violence among
American youth is now the elephant in the room.

Clarke hit his stride in the mid-80s and was turning out a series of
superb films - my favorites are CONTACT, RITA SUE AND BOB TOO,
CHRISTINE, THE FIRM, and ELEPHANT - when he died at age 54. - Dan
3949


From: David Ehrenstein
Date: Mon Nov 10, 2003 3:45pm
Subject: Re: "elephant" ?
 
AIDS actually.

--- Dan Sallitt wrote:
"Not a documentary, but an unusual 40-minute 1989
fiction TV film by the
outstanding British director Alan Clarke, who died of
cancer not too
long after its airing"

__________________________________
Do you Yahoo!?
Protect your identity with Yahoo! Mail AddressGuard
http://antispam.yahoo.com/whatsnewfree
3950


From: David Ehrenstein
Date: Mon Nov 10, 2003 3:48pm
Subject: Re: Gigi
 
I've seen filmographies that claim Nico appears in a
party scene in "The Sandpiper," but I don't recall her
and its been years since I've seen the thing.

Can anyone conform?

--- hotlove666 wrote:
> I love eevry film of Minnelli, including The
> Sandpiper. Bellour's
> Analaysis of Film contains a good structural
> analysis of Gigi.
>
>


__________________________________
Do you Yahoo!?
Protect your identity with Yahoo! Mail AddressGuard
http://antispam.yahoo.com/whatsnewfree
3951


From: David Ehrenstein
Date: Mon Nov 10, 2003 3:58pm
Subject: Re: Re: films & arguments (was: SF locations)
 
Not really.

http://ehrensteinland.com/htmls/bride/g002/b_davidehrenstein-drewbarrymore.html

--- jaketwilson wrote:


"> I imagine that meeting Drew Barrymore in real life
> would be a very
> different experience from watching any of her films,
> and seeing her
> act in a play would be different again."

__________________________________
Do you Yahoo!?
Protect your identity with Yahoo! Mail AddressGuard
http://antispam.yahoo.com/whatsnewfree
3952


From: jpcoursodon
Date: Mon Nov 10, 2003 6:08pm
Subject: Re: gigi/brigadoon
 
I don't think GIGI is particularly detested in France. You'd have to
ask "by whom?" anyway... The French have always been so used to see
Hollywood movies taking place (or supposed to be taking place) in
France that they had no particular reason to dislike GIGI or AN
AMERICAN IN PARIS. If French audiences were able to stomach the Logan
version of the Pagnol trilogy (FANNY)they're obviously able to
stomach anything.

Of course GIGI is a musical fantasy without any pretention to giving
an authentic picture of French life. All musicals are. I just find
FUNNY FACE, which is as much of a fantasy, delightful and GIGI
distasteful. I don't toss GIGI out of the Minnelli canon; I think
it's a very Minnellian movie (superb direction, of course). But after
all a film that won nine Oscars including best picture can hardly be
considered a neglected, underrated gem in need of auteurist
reappraisal.

To say the film is a "patently sexist fantasy" is beside the point.
The film is about a time and place where everything and everybody
was "sexist", a term that wouldn't be invented for nearly a hundred
years because nobody at the time would have understood what the hell
it meant. You might as well object to a film about Attila the Hun
because the title character ignores the democratic process.

No, GIGI is not more "oo la la" than French films taking place
roughly at the same time (the Renoirs) but I guess the French have a
right to be Oh la la with their own culture. On the other hand FUNNY
FACE doesn't strike me at all as "oo la la" (I'm never sure of the
spelling of this exclamation, which actually is NOT French at all, at
least not in the sense attributed to it by Americans).

By the way I didn't provide the quote about Caron's embarrassment;
someone else did. I wasn't even aware of it. She may say (and mean
it) that Minnelli is her favorite director, but since she never
worked with another director approching his stature (except for Walsh
in the extremely minor GLORY ALLEY)it doesn't mean much.
JPC
--- In a_film_by@yahoogroups.com, "joe_mcelhaney"
wrote:
> Is GIGI really that detested in France? I've always loved the film
> (as well as AN AMERICAN IN PARIS -- I cannot go along with the
> auteurist tendency to toss both of these films out of the Minnelli
> canon). However, I have certainly never felt that GIGI was
> attempting to present itself as some kind of authentic picture of
> French life but rather as an American musical fantasy (often camp
in
> tone) about that culture. Of course we could endlessly debate the
> pros and cons of this somewhat touristic approach and I've met many
> Americans (including many of my students) who shudder at the film
> although for other reasons -- specifically, I think, the ways in
> which the film can be seen as "a patently sexist fantasy about
little
> girls," as James Naremore has put it. I don't agree with that
> reading either but I do think it's symptomatic of the kinds of
> misunderstandings that have arisen over the film. But is GIGI any
> more "oo-la-la" (as Cukor put it) than, say, FRENCH CAN CAN or
ELENA
> ET LES HOMMES? Or for that matter FUNNY FACE, which so many people
> here seem to prefer? (I don't.) Since Jean-Pierre Coursodon
provided
> a Leslie Caron quote about her embarrassment in terms of GIGI, I'll
> provide another one: In a VILLAGE VOICE interview with Arthur Bell
> in the early 1980s she said that GIGI was her favorite film and
> Minnelli her favorite director. Is she talking out of both sides
of
> her mouth, one for the French and one for the Americans?
>
> Alain Resnais is one French fan of GIGI and listed it as such in a
> book that was published in the late 1970s, I believe, in which
> filmmakers and critics were asked to provide lists of their
favorite
> films as well as their choice for films which were underrated.
GIGI,
> if memory serves me correctly, was on Resnais's choice for an
> underrated film. Was he perhaps responding to some kind of French
> hostility towards GIGI? And does anyone remember this book or
> remember its title? It was in a large hardback format. I couldn't
> afford it during my undergraduate days and I've been searching for
it
> ever since I became a rich academic. (In the same book, Rohmer
listed
> the Mankiewicz CLEOPATRA was an underrated film.) And when I met
> Jean-Loup Bourget at a Max Ophuls conference last March he told me
> that he loved all of Minnelli, "even THE SANDPIPER." As for AN
> AMERICAN IN PARIS, I suppose that many of you saw the recent
> interview with Chris Marker in FILM COMMENT in which he claims that
> he and Resnais saw the film in London when it came out and that
they
> loved the film so much they went to see the first showing of it
every
> day for days afterwards?
>
> I know this is off topic in terms of France, but I also completely
> agree with Damien Bona about BRIGADOON, another misunderstood
> Minnelli film. Elsaesser's essay on Minnelli (still the best
> critical analysis of this cineaste in English) lists it as one of
the
> three greatest of his musicals, along with THE BAND WAGON and THE
> PIRATE. But this is pretty much a lone voice.
3953


From: jpcoursodon
Date: Mon Nov 10, 2003 7:27pm
Subject: Jerry redux
 
The "fact" that the French "love" Jerry Lewis has been mentioned in
just about every article about France I have read here in the past 25
years at least. It's just something you're supposed to say (and
snicker at) when France is mentioned.

Reality check:

The Martin-Lewis comedies were very popular in France throughout the
fifties. At first their audiences could be described as juvenile and
lowbrow. However the cinephilic revues (mainly Cahiers du Cinema and
Positif) started getting interested in Lewis in the mid-fifties,
toward the end of the Martin-Lewis partnership, and especially as a
result of his collaboration with Frank Tashlin, who was admired by
both camps. For example in 1958 #29 of Positif had a long piece on
Tashlin by Roger Tailleur, another by Seguin, and an article on Lewis
by Benayoun ("Simple Simon ou l'anti-James Dean"). When Lewis started
directing his own films he became a full-fledged "auteur" and Cahiers
kept raving about his films throughout the sixties. So there was the
rare phenomenon of both ends of the French audience -- lowbrow and
highbrow -- embracing the same comedian (it hadn't happened since
Chaplin, and to a lesser degree Keaton) although perhaps not for the
same reasons. However it is safe to say that a considerable section
of the French movie audience -- call it middle-brow if you will --
continued to consider Lewis a low-class clown, and the cinephilic
infatuation for him another snobbish pose. I myself at the time was
very ambivalent about Lewis, and also Tashlin, who I felt was being
overrated by both Cahiers and Positif and many buffs I knew. THE
BELLBOY and THE LADIE'S MAN finally convinced me that Lewis was
indeed an auteur. I have made the case (with some reservations) for
Lewis both in "American Directors" and "50 ans".

I don't think Lewis's French fame has survived past the eighties.
Young audiences today barely know who he is. I don't think there has
been a Lewis retrospective anywhere in a long time (maybe I'm
mistaken)...

JPC
3954


From: joe_mcelhaney
Date: Mon Nov 10, 2003 7:32pm
Subject: minnelli corrections
 
My sincere thanks to Chris Fujiwara for giving me the title of the
book I've been looking for over the last two decades. Now it's off
to Alibris for me. Also, thanks to Chris for the corrections in
terms of my mis-remembering Resnais (rather than Marcel Ophuls)
listing GIGI as an underrated film and for Rohmer doing the same for
CLEOPATRA. I was clearly projecting my own fantasies and desires
onto this elusive book. Not to be too obstinate about it, though, I
suspect that Resnais likes GIGI and Rohmer likes CLEOPATRA anyway.
In terms of the former, there's also Sarris's well-known argument
about the gossiping extras in GIGI anticipating the ghostly
mannequins of MARIENBAD.

Also my apologies to Jean-Pierre for mis-attributing the Caron quote
about GIGI to him. I should never read and then respond to these
posts at 6:30 a.m. Interestingly, Caron reportedly did not even want
Minnelli to direct GIGI but tried to persuade Arthur Freed to hire
Charles Walters (who ended up doing some retakes anyway) or George
Cukor to direct. I'm still not clear about one thing, though: What
exactly is it that is so distasteful about GIGI? Michael Powell
said that the film was enough to turn him off of "show biz"
altogether.

As for Nico for being an extra in THE SANDPIPER, I never heard that
before but I'll look at my tape tonight. (Monique Van Vooren is, of
course, quite visible more than once in GIGI.) How about a Nico
dusk-to-dawn program of LA DOLCE VITA, CHELSEA GIRLS and THE
SANDPIPER?
3955


From: jpcoursodon
Date: Mon Nov 10, 2003 7:35pm
Subject: Re: Gigi
 
--- In a_film_by@yahoogroups.com, "hotlove666"
wrote:
> I love eevry film of Minnelli, including The Sandpiper. Bellour's
> Analaysis of Film contains a good structural analysis of Gigi.


But even the best structural analysis of a movie is not going to
make me like it if I don't very much care for in the first place. I
love many Minnelli films and like many others, including The
Sandpiper, but I don't feel obligated to unconditionally love
everything he ever directed in deference to auteurist orthodoxy.
JPC
3956


From: David Ehrenstein
Date: Mon Nov 10, 2003 7:54pm
Subject: Re: minnelli corrections
 
"How about a Nico
dusk-to-dawn program of LA DOLCE VITA, CHELSEA GIRLS
and THE
SANDPIPER?"

Sounds like a plan! I just picked up for 7 bucks at
Amoeba a dupe of a dupe of LE BERCEAU DE CRISTAL.
Fascinating.

I wish decent prints of LA CICATRICE INTERIEURE were
available.



--- joe_mcelhaney wrote:


__________________________________
Do you Yahoo!?
Protect your identity with Yahoo! Mail AddressGuard
http://antispam.yahoo.com/whatsnewfree
3957


From: Jonathan Rosenbaum
Date: Mon Nov 10, 2003 8:24pm
Subject: Re: France We Love You...and they love AND hate us.
 
> My only, mild, criticism of the piece - I bring this up only
because
> it relates to something earlier in this discussion - is that I
> believe it's completely unnecessary for Americans writing in praise
> of Lewis either to apologize for their enthusiasm or to say in
> effect, as your friend does, "The French were right." If we all
just
> ignore this stupid "French/Lewis" thing, a toothless banality that
> condescends both to the nation and the man, it will eventually go
> away, as it deserves to have done 30 years ago.

I agree with you, Chris--and should add that I was disappointed to
see Joe Dante perpetuating the same toothless banality during the
Paris sequence of LOONEY TUNES: BACK IN ACTION, despite my overall
enjoyment of both the film and the Lewis posters we see for WHICH WAY
TO THE FRONT? and SMORGASBORD. I assume this was Joe's way of doing a
Lewis tribute, and I certainly understand the impulse--but wish he
could have found some other way of articulating such a tribute.

Incidentally, the "fun" book you were just describing was issued by
the Belgian Film Archives and was spearheaded by the late Jacques
Ledoux.

Jonathan
3958


From: Jonathan Rosenbaum
Date: Mon Nov 10, 2003 8:30pm
Subject: Re: France We Love You...and they love AND hate us.
 
--- In a_film_by@yahoogroups.com, "Jaime N. Christley"
wrote:
>
> > expressing a wild enthusiasm for Jerry Lewis ... that
> > surpasses sanity.
>
> Hmm, are you sure you can accurately say this about "the French"?
> That is, all of them? Or most of them? Or even the most vocal of
> French cultural commentators?


For the record, Lewis has himself noted in recent years that he's far
more popular in several other countries--including Italy and Japan,
for instance--than he is in France. And it's worth adding that (a)
much of the French critical industry on Lewis was led by Robert
Benayoun, who died many years ago, and (b) today Woody Allen is far
more popular in France than Lewis is. One indication of the former:
several years back, when I was interviewed by the hip weekly Les
Incorruptibles, they partially indicated how weird I was in the
introductory blurb by noting that I preferred Lewis to Allen.

Jonathan
3959


From: Jonathan Rosenbaum
Date: Mon Nov 10, 2003 8:33pm
Subject: Re: Jerry redux
 
>
> I don't think Lewis's French fame has survived past the eighties.
> Young audiences today barely know who he is. I don't think there
has
> been a Lewis retrospective anywhere in a long time (maybe I'm
> mistaken)...
>
> JPC

No, JP, I don't believe you are mistaken. And I wish I'd read this
post before I wrote my own, which duplicates some of the same points.
3960


From: joe_mcelhaney
Date: Mon Nov 10, 2003 8:34pm
Subject: nico
 
Well, now I'm envious of David Ehrenstein's dupe. And speaking of
Nico, did anyone see the Warhol ARI AND MARIO, which BAM showed a
couple of weeks ago? Nico has to go out somewhere (although the trip
seems to consist of her only going to the other side of the camera
at the beginning of the film and then coming in again near the end,
with the apartment door clearly visible at the far right of the
shot, a door which is, in fact, used by another character early on.)
Nico asks Mario Montez, in full drag, to babysit Ari. One high point
of the film is Mario's confused rendition of "I'm an Indian, Too" as
Ari cowers behind a curtain. Another high point takes place after
Nico "returns" and Ari goes into a heavily-miked bathroom off to the
left to urinate. Mario and Nico begin a conversation which is
largely drowned out by the deafening, off-screen sound of Ari
urinating.

An amazing film, right up there with GIGI.
3961


From: David Ehrenstein
Date: Mon Nov 10, 2003 8:51pm
Subject: Re: nico
 
This is a reel that was originally part of the first
"cut" of THE CHELSEA GIRLS. There's anoher reel, now
known as "Afternoon" (featuring Edie Sedgewick and
Dorothy Dean) that was also part of this first cut.
After the film went uptown to the "Cinema Rendezvous"
new reels were put in and these were taken out. When
first shown in THE CHELSEA GIRLS they were projected
silent -- the reel sown alongside them being the
primary sound reel for that given 35 minutes.

--- joe_mcelhaney wrote:


__________________________________
Do you Yahoo!?
Protect your identity with Yahoo! Mail AddressGuard
http://antispam.yahoo.com/whatsnewfree
3962


From: David Ehrenstein
Date: Mon Nov 10, 2003 8:55pm
Subject: Re: Re: France We Love You...and they love AND hate us.
 
"I assume this was Joe's way of doing a
Lewis tribute, and I certainly understand the
impulse--but wish he
could have found some other way of articulating such a
tribute."

No, no, no. You're missing the point. Joe plays with
iconographic cliches. Because we are in Paris there
HAS to be a festival of obscure Jerry Lewis films at
the base of the Effill tower -- which is of course
right next to the Louvre.

That's why I insist (see an earlier post) that the
entire film ACTUALLY takes place in Las Vegas.


--- Jonathan Rosenbaum
wrote:


__________________________________
Do you Yahoo!?
Protect your identity with Yahoo! Mail AddressGuard
http://antispam.yahoo.com/whatsnewfree
3963


From: joe_mcelhaney
Date: Mon Nov 10, 2003 9:06pm
Subject: Re: nico
 
David--Thanks so much for the info on ARI AND MARIO. My Warhol
literature is horribly dated but after seeing some of the films
again recently, and being so astonished by them all over again (as
well as a couple of new discoveries), I need to do some catching up
in terms of what has been written. Stephen Koch's book describes a
version of CHELSEA GIRLS which opens with the Eric Emerson monologue
although in the version we have now that comes near the end, as does
all of the color footage. I take it this idea of saving the color
until the end was something that did not arise until later in the
cutting? The soundtrack to ARI AND MARIO is so wonderful, though, I
can't imagine it silent.






--- In a_film_by@yahoogroups.com, David Ehrenstein
wrote:
> This is a reel that was originally part of the first
> "cut" of THE CHELSEA GIRLS. There's anoher reel, now
> known as "Afternoon" (featuring Edie Sedgewick and
> Dorothy Dean) that was also part of this first cut.
> After the film went uptown to the "Cinema Rendezvous"
> new reels were put in and these were taken out. When
> first shown in THE CHELSEA GIRLS they were projected
> silent -- the reel sown alongside them being the
> primary sound reel for that given 35 minutes.
>
> --- joe_mcelhaney wrote:
>
>
> __________________________________
> Do you Yahoo!?
> Protect your identity with Yahoo! Mail AddressGuard
> http://antispam.yahoo.com/whatsnewfree
3964


From: programming
Date: Mon Nov 10, 2003 9:56pm
Subject: Re: Warhol books
 
Joe M. wrote:

"David--Thanks so much for the info on ARI AND MARIO.  My Warhol
literature is horribly dated but after seeing some of the films
again recently, and being so astonished by them all over again (as
well as a couple of new discoveries), I need to do some catching up
in terms of what has been written."


Callie Angell (of the Andy Warhol Film Project) has written a couple of very
good small exhibition catalogues over the last couple of years. I can check
specifics at home if anyone wants me to.

She has been doing exhaustive research for years now in preparation for a
Warhol Films catalog raisone (am I spelling this right?). It is getting
close to completion and promises to be an amazing document of W's film work.

Patrick (Chicago)
3965


From: Michael Lieberman
Date: Mon Nov 10, 2003 10:36pm
Subject: Re: Warhol film rentals
 
I run a small student film society and was wondering how to aquire 16mm prints of Warhol's films to rent. Everyone always talks Warhol, nobody sees his work. It's
about time!

Mike



----- Original Message -----
From: programming
Date: Mon, 10 Nov 2003 15:56:04 -0600
To: a_film_by
Subject: Re: [a_film_by] Warhol books





Joe M. wrote:



"David--Thanks so much for the info on ARI AND MARIO.  My Warhol

literature is horribly dated but after seeing some of the films

again recently, and being so astonished by them all over again (as

well as a couple of new discoveries), I need to do some catching up

in terms of what has been written."





Callie Angell (of the Andy Warhol Film Project) has written a couple of very

good small exhibition catalogues over the last couple of years.  I can check

specifics at home if anyone wants me to.



She has been doing exhaustive research for years now in preparation for a

Warhol Films catalog raisone (am I spelling this right?).  It is getting

close to completion and promises to be an amazing document of W's film work.



Patrick (Chicago)













To unsubscribe from this group, send an email to:

a_film_by-unsubscribe@yahoogroups.com









Your use of Yahoo! Groups is subject to the Yahoo!">http://docs.yahoo.com/info/terms/">Yahoo! Terms of Service.






--
__________________________________________________________
Sign-up for your own personalized E-mail at Mail.com
http://www.mail.com/?sr=signup

Search Smarter - get the new eXact Search Bar for free!
http://www.exactsearchbar.com/
3966


From: programming
Date: Mon Nov 10, 2003 11:10pm
Subject: Re: Warhol film rentals
 
> I run a small student film society and was wondering how to aquire 16mm prints
> of Warhol's films to rent. Everyone always talks Warhol, nobody sees his work.
> It's
> about time!
>
> Mike

The Warhol films available for rental are all distributed by the Circulating
Film and Video Library at the Museum of Modern Art.

Call Kitty at (212) 708-9532

Poor Little Rich Girl is amazing (and my favorite).

Two other lesser known titles that are amazing:

Soap Opera
Inner and Outer Space (or maybe it's Outer and Inner Space?) - if you can
show side by side 16mm


Patrick (Chicago)
3967


From: jpcoursodon
Date: Mon Nov 10, 2003 11:18pm
Subject: Re: France We Love You...and they love AND hate us.
 
--- In a_film_by@yahoogroups.com, "Jonathan Rosenbaum"
wrote:
>
>
>
>
>
> For the record, Lewis has himself noted in recent years that he's
far
> more popular in several other countries--including Italy and Japan,
> for instance--than he is in France. And it's worth adding that (a)
> much of the French critical industry on Lewis was led by Robert
> Benayoun, who died many years ago, and (b) today Woody Allen is far
> more popular in France than Lewis is. One indication of the former:
> several years back, when I was interviewed by the hip weekly Les
> Incorruptibles, they partially indicated how weird I was in the
> introductory blurb by noting that I preferred Lewis to Allen.
>
> Jonathan

I agree, Jonathan, and our posts do dovetail.

Benayoun died in 1997, that's not so many years ago, but it's
true that he hadn't been writing on Allen for a while (I think his
last review of an Allen film was ALICE). However POSITIF is still
very much interested in Allen. In February 1998 they had a "Dossier"
on Allen with eight articles and two interviews (including reprints
of old Benayoun pieces) and every single recent Allen movie has
received a rave or near-rave in the mag. I reviewed a few Allen films
for them myself (HUSBANDS AND WIVES, NEW YORK STORIES...)but have
become somewhat disenchanted with his output, especially the awful
HOLLYWOOD ENDING.

The French hip weekly is Les Inrockuptibles (a pun, or spoonerism).

I would find it difficult to decide whether I "prefer" Allen or
Lewis because there is hardly any point of comparison (except that
they're both Jewish). It's like chosing between Minnelli and
Eisenstein.

Also it's hard (and unfair to Lewis) to compare a very active
filmmaker and one who has been inactive for many years when assessing
their degree of present popularity.

JPC
3968


From: jpcoursodon
Date: Mon Nov 10, 2003 11:20pm
Subject: Re: France We Love You...and they love AND hate us.
 
--- In a_film_by@yahoogroups.com, David Ehrenstein
wrote:
>
>
> No, no, no. You're missing the point. Joe plays with
> iconographic cliches. Because we are in Paris there
> HAS to be a festival of obscure Jerry Lewis films at
> the base of the Effill tower -- which is of course
> right next to the Louvre.
>
> That's why I insist (see an earlier post) that the
> entire film ACTUALLY takes place in Las Vegas.
>
Do you mean in reality the Eiffel Tower is not next to the Louvre?
>
> --- Jonathan Rosenbaum
> wrote:
>
>
> __________________________________
> Do you Yahoo!?
> Protect your identity with Yahoo! Mail AddressGuard
> http://antispam.yahoo.com/whatsnewfree
3969


From: David Ehrenstein
Date: Mon Nov 10, 2003 11:28pm
Subject: Re: Warhol books
 
I've corresponded frequently with Callie over the
years. She's done Beyond Yeoman work, uncovering all
sorts of things. To give but one example, while Andy
made only one 3 1/2 silent screen test/portrait of
everyone he shot TONS of Phillip Fagin screen
test/portraits.

The most difficult taks is sorting out ****(Four
Stars) the 25 hour movie ( note: 25, not 24) which was
shown once and once only in 1967 before being
disassembled. "Loves of Ondine," "Imitation of Christ"
and "Tub Girls" are festures derived from it along
with the never-discussed "Brigid Polk: Detective"


--- programming
wrote:
> Joe M. wrote:
>
> "David--Thanks so much for the info on ARI AND
> MARIO.  My Warhol
> literature is horribly dated but after seeing some
> of the films
> again recently, and being so astonished by them all
> over again (as
> well as a couple of new discoveries), I need to do
> some catching up
> in terms of what has been written."
>
>
> Callie Angell (of the Andy Warhol Film Project) has
> written a couple of very
> good small exhibition catalogues over the last
> couple of years. I can check
> specifics at home if anyone wants me to.
>
> She has been doing exhaustive research for years now
> in preparation for a
> Warhol Films catalog raisone (am I spelling this
> right?). It is getting
> close to completion and promises to be an amazing
> document of W's film work.
>
> Patrick (Chicago)
>
>
>
>


__________________________________
Do you Yahoo!?
Protect your identity with Yahoo! Mail AddressGuard
http://antispam.yahoo.com/whatsnewfree
3970


From: David Ehrenstein
Date: Mon Nov 10, 2003 11:31pm
Subject: Re: Warhol film rentals
 
My favorites are "Beauty #2," "My Hustler," "Horse,"
"Vinyl," and "The Life of Juanita Castro."

--- programming
wrote:


__________________________________
Do you Yahoo!?
Protect your identity with Yahoo! Mail AddressGuard
http://antispam.yahoo.com/whatsnewfree
3971


From: hotlove666
Date: Mon Nov 10, 2003 11:52pm
Subject: Re: Jerry Redux
 
Jonathan Rosenbaum wrote: "I agree with you, Chris--and
should add that I was disappointed to see Joe Dante
perpetuating the same toothless banality during the Paris
sequence of LOONEY TUNES: BACK IN ACTION, despite my
overall enjoyment of both the film and the Lewis posters we see
for WHICH WAYTO THE FRONT? and SMORGASBORD. I
assume this was Joe's way of doing a Lewis tribute, and I
certainly understand the impulse--but wish he could have found
some other way of articulating such a tribute."

Huh?
3972


From: Michael Lieberman
Date: Tue Nov 11, 2003 2:38am
Subject: Re: Warhol film rentals
 
"Vinyl", "Beauty #2" and "Outer and Inner Space" are at the top of my most anticipated. Can't wait to delve!

Mike



----- Original Message -----
From: David Ehrenstein
Date: Mon, 10 Nov 2003 15:31:06 -0800 (PST)
To: a_film_by@yahoogroups.com
Subject: Re: [a_film_by] Warhol film rentals





My favorites are "Beauty #2," "My Hustler," "Horse,"

"Vinyl," and "The Life of Juanita Castro."



--- programming

wrote:

3973


From: Paul Gallagher
Date: Tue Nov 11, 2003 2:48am
Subject: Lewis and Allen
 
I read that Woody Allen offered "Take the Money and Run" to
Jerry Lewis to direct, but Lewis couldn't negotiate a deal with
the production company.

Allen later offered "Bananas" to Lewis, but Lewis was filming "The
Day the Clown Cried" in Europe.

Paul
3974


From: joe_mcelhaney
Date: Tue Nov 11, 2003 2:58am
Subject: Re: Nico in The Sandpiper
 
--- In a_film_by@yahoogroups.com, David Ehrenstein
wrote:
> I've seen filmographies that claim Nico appears in a
> party scene in "The Sandpiper," but I don't recall her
> and its been years since I've seen the thing.
>
> Can anyone conform?

I took out my tape of THE SANDPIPER tonight and looked for Nico
during the party sequence in which she is credited in some sources
(including IMDB) as being one of the dancers. I couldn't spot her
dancing but there is a woman sitting behind Charles Bronson (as
Bronson, Taylor, Burton and James Edwards have a disucssion) who
looks something like her -- blonde hair, bangs, full lips, etc. --
although the hair is shorter than normal for her for this period. If
this is not her, then I don't know where she could be. It's hard to
make out faces in a letterboxed tape like this. I'd have to see it
in 35mm. again.

An intersting sequence for her to be in, though, considering that the
discussion the characters are involved in is all about hashish and
heroin and finding oblivion at the end of a needle.





__________________________________
> Do you Yahoo!?
> Protect your identity with Yahoo! Mail AddressGuard
> http://antispam.yahoo.com/whatsnewfree
3975


From: Damien Bona
Date: Tue Nov 11, 2003 3:25am
Subject: Re: Woody Allen's September
 
--- In a_film_by@yahoogroups.com, Rick Segreda
wrote:
> I think Woody's great when he's warm, generous, and even
>sentimental (Annie Hall, Manhattan, Zelig, Hannah & Her Sisters,
>Radio Days) and pretty repellant when he's self-pitying, elitist,
>and cynical (Stardust Memories, Deconstructing Harry).
>

Rick, I think youhave it exactly right. Where one traditionally
divided Allen's works into the comedies and dramas, it really is the
tone that differentiates his works, not the genre. For instance,
Another Woman is, I feel, a major work with a genuine compassion for
the characters that is lacking in Interiors and October, as well as
Deconstructing Harry and Purple Rose Of Cairo. There are a few films
that blend tones (e.g. Broadway Danny Rose; Crimes And Misdemeanors)
but in general the more generous of spirit a particular Woody ALlen
film is, the more effective it tends to be.
3976


From: Damien Bona
Date: Tue Nov 11, 2003 3:28am
Subject: Re: SF Locations: Television
 
--- In a_film_by@yahoogroups.com, Rick Segreda
wrote:
> I was always a fan of "Streets of San Francisco," with my
>adolescent gay heart going pitter-patter for Michael Douglas. The
>show itself holds up pretty well; I recently watched a re-run and I
>was surprised at how good the writing and acting were. And who can
>forget John Davidson as a homocidal drag queen? (Talk about having a
>bad hair day!)

Michael Chabon, who wrote Wonder Boys, said he was pleased with
Michael Douglas's bring cast in the film version because, he said, he
thought back to Streets Of San Francisco and felt that even though
Douglas's character was a cop, he probably had a joint in his jacket
pocket.
3977


From: Damien Bona
Date: Tue Nov 11, 2003 3:48am
Subject: Re: gigi/brigadoon
 
--- In a_film_by@yahoogroups.com, "joe_mcelhaney"
wrote:
> Of course we could endlessly debate the
> pros and cons of this somewhat touristic approach and I've met many
> Americans (including many of my students) who shudder at the film
> although for other reasons -- specifically, I think, the ways in
> which the film can be seen as "a patently sexist fantasy about
little
> girls," as James Naremore has put it. I don't agree with that
> reading either but I do think it's symptomatic of the kinds of
> misunderstandings that have arisen over the film. But is GIGI any
> more "oo-la-la" (as Cukor put it) than, say, FRENCH CAN CAN or
ELENA
> ET LES HOMMES? Or for that matter FUNNY FACE, which so many people
> here seem to prefer?

I love both Gigi and Funny Face (admittedly Funny Face a bit more),
but if one says that the Minnelli is "a patently sexist fantasy about
little girls," then one is obliged also to set forth the equally
specious argument that the Donen is a treatise against the
undertaking of intellectual pursuits by women, who should be dressing
up fashionably and alluringly the better to please a man rather than
hanging out with Existentialists in Montparnasse.
3978


From: David Ehrenstein
Date: Tue Nov 11, 2003 4:15am
Subject: Re: Re: Nico in The Sandpiper
 
"An intersting sequence for her to be in, though,
considering that the
discussion the characters are involved in is all about
hashish and
heroin and finding oblivion at the end of a needle."

Maybe that's why she was given the credit. The film
was a 1965 release, meaning that parts of it were shot
in '64. And as far as I know she was in New York at
that time -- not L.A.

--- joe_mcelhaney wrote:


__________________________________
Do you Yahoo!?
Protect your identity with Yahoo! Mail AddressGuard
http://antispam.yahoo.com/whatsnewfree
3979


From: Chris Fujiwara
Date: Tue Nov 11, 2003 4:59am
Subject: Re: France We Love You...and they love AND hate us.
 
I too was unhappy with the Lewis posters in Looney Tunes Back in
Action.... Theoretically I can buy the "Las Vegas" explanation
advanced by David E., but I didn't enjoy seeing those shots in the
movie. I felt that Dante should have known better.

--- In a_film_by@yahoogroups.com, "Jonathan Rosenbaum"
wrote:
>
>
> > My only, mild, criticism of the piece - I bring this up only
> because
> > it relates to something earlier in this discussion - is that I
> > believe it's completely unnecessary for Americans writing in
praise
> > of Lewis either to apologize for their enthusiasm or to say in
> > effect, as your friend does, "The French were right." If we all
> just
> > ignore this stupid "French/Lewis" thing, a toothless banality
that
> > condescends both to the nation and the man, it will eventually go
> > away, as it deserves to have done 30 years ago.
>
> I agree with you, Chris--and should add that I was disappointed to
> see Joe Dante perpetuating the same toothless banality during the
> Paris sequence of LOONEY TUNES: BACK IN ACTION, despite my overall
> enjoyment of both the film and the Lewis posters we see for WHICH
WAY
> TO THE FRONT? and SMORGASBORD. I assume this was Joe's way of doing
a
> Lewis tribute, and I certainly understand the impulse--but wish he
> could have found some other way of articulating such a tribute.
>
> Incidentally, the "fun" book you were just describing was issued by
> the Belgian Film Archives and was spearheaded by the late Jacques
> Ledoux.
>
> Jonathan
3980


From: hotlove666
Date: Tue Nov 11, 2003 5:02am
Subject: Late Minnelli
 
My favorite Minnelli critic, Blake Lucas, argues that the last four
are dialogues, in the manner of Plato, with all the permutations of
man and woman as teacher and student: woman teaching man (The
Sandpiper), man teaching woman (On a Clear Day...), man teaching man
(Goodbye, Charlie, even though...) and woman teaching woman (A Matter
of Time).
3981


From: Jaime N. Christley
Date: Tue Nov 11, 2003 5:32am
Subject: Jerry in Israel
 
I've been reading reports that, in about a year, Jerry will get his
own film festival in Tel Aviv, in conjunction with the Steven
Spielberg Jewish Film Archives. Jerry is expected to attend. No
word as to which films will be screened (there are hard-to-believe
rumors that THE DAY THE CLOWN CRIED will be one of them), but there
you go. You know as much as I. Do.

Know.

-Jaime
3982


From: hotlove666
Date: Tue Nov 11, 2003 5:39am
Subject: Re: France We Love You...
 
Chris Fujiwara wrote:
I too was unhappy with the Lewis posters in Looney Tunes Back in
Action.... Theoretically I can buy the "Las Vegas" explanation
advanced by David E., but I didn't enjoy seeing those shots in the
movie. I felt that Dante should have known better.

Really?
3983


From: Rick Segreda
Date: Tue Nov 11, 2003 6:58am
Subject: Le Jerry Lewis et le Europe (and Jaco van Dormael's "The Eighth Day")
 
At first I was going to post an analysis as to why the French love Jerry the way they do, but now I find out the Italians love him even more. I remember Fassbinder did a Godardian Lewis tribute in "The Year of 13 Moons." But maybe it is not a French thing as it is something more uniquely continental-European.

As a kid I did think Lewis was funny, but years later, when I checked out his movies again on AMC...well, I thought he was pretty lame. Though, to be fair to Lewis, comedy is the hardest thing to pull off, and creating durably funny comedies that are still funny years past their social and cultural time frame is even harder.

But I don't think the French, Germans, and Italians love him because he's even moderately ha-ha funny, but because the sugary, innocent, waif-like Lewis persona appeals to something in the European soul that is, by our American standards, sentimental to the point of squishiness.

As a useful cross-reference, I am thinking especially of Jaco van Dormael's "The Eighth Day," a sort of European "Rain Man," only featuring an actual developmentally disabled actor, Pascal Duquenne, in a "heartwarming" tale that was so disgustingly (by my cranky standards) sentimental (it features soulfully singing mice) that I kept hoping for Leatherface to show up with his chainsaw and shred the characters and scenery. I know I took Jim Hoberman to task for not liking movies with warm human feelings, but even I have to draw the line. Yet the film was a massive hit across the continent.

But in looking at how highly Lewis is still regarded over there, I suspect that Lewis unexpectedly tapped into this squishiness when he created the "Jerry Lewis" movie persona. This uniquely European squishiness must be the flip side of Europe's gloom culture that gave us existentialism and even nihilism.


---------------------------------
Do you Yahoo!?
Protect your identity with Yahoo! Mail AddressGuard

[Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
3984


From: J. Mabe
Date: Tue Nov 11, 2003 7:06am
Subject: Re: Lewis tribute in "The Year of 13 Moons"
 
--- Rick Segreda wrote:
I remember
> Fassbinder did a Godardian Lewis tribute in "The
> Year of 13 Moons."

I think I've only seen two Lewis films, but "13 moons"
is one of my favorites... what's the tribute? I must
have missed it.

Josh Mabe


__________________________________
Do you Yahoo!?
Protect your identity with Yahoo! Mail AddressGuard
http://antispam.yahoo.com/whatsnewfree
3985


From: Jaime N. Christley
Date: Tue Nov 11, 2003 7:17am
Subject: Re: Lewis tribute in "The Year of 13 Moons"
 
> I think I've only seen two Lewis films, but "13 moons"
> is one of my favorites... what's the tribute? I must
> have missed it.

The fellow that Elvira goes to see in the office building, he's
watching (and re-enacting) a scene from YOU'RE NEVER TOO YOUNG
(Taurog, 1955). According to the IMDb, Lewis pretends to be a 12-
year-old to avoid being falsely convicted for a bank hold-up.

-Jaime
3986


From: hotlove666
Date: Tue Nov 11, 2003 8:12am
Subject: Lewis as filmmaker
 
First of all, I think The Patsy is hilarious. When The Step Bothers
come out and do their dazzling act to nothing but scattered applause,
and walk off past the unfortunate who has to follow them ("Tough
audience!"), or when he's dying on stage and crickets are chirping in
the audience - that's funny! Funnier than most Chaplin, actually.

Also, he's not just a persona (setting aside for the moment that he
plays a number of characters with very different personae in The
Family Jewels, including a cynical clown and a comic gangster who
performs New York, New York with his minions when they realize
they're on camera) - he's a filmmaker whose Paramount films are the
most beautiful and the most modern films of that era in their use of
space, color, camera movement, montage, decor and every other element
of filmmaking, outdistancing even Tashlin, the veteran cartoonist, in
that department, by a country mile. In The Bellboy he already does it
all with practical locations and black and white. His images have had
a huge influence on Godard, Spike Lee, Joe Dante, Paul Thomas
Anderson, Scorsese (his best film), the Coens, and many other
modernists.

Then there's his sense of fantasy, and the dreamlike inventiveness
that appealed so much to the surrealism-loving Positif crowd; the one-
of-a-kind improvs (the cowboy in Three On a Couch: "I'm too tall to
die!" or the General in Which Way to the Front); the intriguing
fables (The Big Mouth, for example, which is not unlike Oliveira's
Mon Cas); the mythologizing of self (in The Nutty Professor, of
course - that Buddy Love is really a sentimental character - but also
in The Patsy, my personal favorite, and One More Time, where he used
Lawford and Davis as surrogates for Dean and Jer, or the opening of
Smorgasbord, built around his own much-publicized suicide attempt);
the elegance of his physical comedy when he was young, and the
uncompromising irreverence that makes Woody Allen, pardon me, look
like a timid schnook (to Ralph Bunch on the Telethon: "Tell me Ralph,
how do you deal with the ego problems?").

Say what you want about all that, Rick, and love it or hate it, but
don't reduce him to The Kid, which is one small facet of what he
does. And don't assume that his fans, who are worldwide,
aren't "getting" it. I remember riding on a subway in NY and
overhearing two office workers conversing earnestly about the scene
he plays with his thumb in The Errand Boy - a very sentimental scene,
but memorably so because of the imagery. And don't underestimate the
hatred that a certain type of person feels for Jerry Lewis. The drug
dealer who ran The Hollywood Cafe until the cops shut it down refused
to switch the tv to the Telethon when I asked him to last year
because it was his restaurant and he wasn't going to have the damn
thing on. And there's the story my friend Alan told (posted here back
in the day, then taken down, so here goes again) about asking a
theatre manager in the San Fernando Valley what kind of people saw
Jerry Lewis movies when he played them. "We don't think of them as
people," he said.
3987


From: joe_mcelhaney
Date: Tue Nov 11, 2003 0:10pm
Subject: Re: Nico in The Sandpiper
 
--- In a_film_by@yahoogroups.com, David Ehrenstein
wrote:
> "An intersting sequence for her to be in, though,
> considering that the
> discussion the characters are involved in is all about
> hashish and
> heroin and finding oblivion at the end of a needle."
>
> Maybe that's why she was given the credit. The film
> was a 1965 release, meaning that parts of it were shot
> in '64. And as far as I know she was in New York at
> that time -- not L.A.
>
> --- joe_mcelhaney wrote:

Acutally, the interiors for THE SANDPIPER were shot in Paris (due to
the tax situation of Taylor/Burton) and not California. Was Nico in
Paris then?
>
>
> __________________________________
> Do you Yahoo!?
> Protect your identity with Yahoo! Mail AddressGuard
> http://antispam.yahoo.com/whatsnewfree
3988


From: joe_mcelhaney
Date: Tue Nov 11, 2003 0:19pm
Subject: Re: Late Minnelli
 
--- In a_film_by@yahoogroups.com, "hotlove666"
wrote:
> My favorite Minnelli critic, Blake Lucas, argues that the last four
> are dialogues, in the manner of Plato, with all the permutations of
> man and woman as teacher and student: woman teaching man (The
> Sandpiper), man teaching woman (On a Clear Day...), man teaching
man
> (Goodbye, Charlie, even though...) and woman teaching woman (A
Matter
> of Time).

What a fascinating way of reading these Minnellis. (It makes him
sound like late Rossellini.) Has Lucas published this anywhere? I
only know his piece on FATHER OF THE BRIDE.

In the annals of Am I the Only Person Who Read That? I seem to recall
seeing an interview with Liza Minnelli around the time that NEW YORK,
NEW YORK was reissued in the early 1980s in which she said that she
had recently bought all of the original footage from A MATTER OF TIME
off of Arkoff and was hoping to restore it. Does anyone know if this
is true and if she is still in possession of this footage?
3989


From: George Robinson
Date: Tue Nov 11, 2003 0:53pm
Subject: Re: Re: Late Minnelli
 
I actually did my master's thesis at Columbia on Minnelli's late films
(everything after Gigi) and will probably weigh in here shortly. Right now
I'm covering a Jewish music conference and trying to meet some deadlines
(you remember those, right?).

g

The man who does not read good books
has no advantage over the man who cannot read them.
--Mark Twain
3990


From: David Ehrenstein
Date: Tue Nov 11, 2003 2:41pm
Subject: Re: Re: Nico in The Sandpiper
 
Hmm. A Paris connection would be more likely as she
was there frequently. But I'm still not entirely
convinced.
--- joe_mcelhaney wrote:

> >
> > --- joe_mcelhaney wrote:
>
> Acutally, the interiors for THE SANDPIPER were shot
> in Paris (due to
> the tax situation of Taylor/Burton) and not
> California. Was Nico in
> Paris then?
> >
> >
> > __________________________________
> > Do you Yahoo!?
> > Protect your identity with Yahoo! Mail
> AddressGuard
> > http://antispam.yahoo.com/whatsnewfree
>
>


__________________________________
Do you Yahoo!?
Protect your identity with Yahoo! Mail AddressGuard
http://antispam.yahoo.com/whatsnewfree
3991


From: David Ehrenstein
Date: Tue Nov 11, 2003 2:44pm
Subject: Re: Re: Lewis tribute in "The Year of 13 Moons"
 
The song they do is called "Let's Face the Music."

"You're Never Too Young" is a remake of "The Major and
the Minor" with Jerry in the Ginger Rogers role.

--- "Jaime N. Christley"
wrote:
>
> > I think I've only seen two Lewis films, but "13
> moons"
> > is one of my favorites... what's the tribute? I
> must
> > have missed it.
>
> The fellow that Elvira goes to see in the office
> building, he's
> watching (and re-enacting) a scene from YOU'RE NEVER
> TOO YOUNG
> (Taurog, 1955). According to the IMDb, Lewis
> pretends to be a 12-
> year-old to avoid being falsely convicted for a bank
> hold-up.
>
> -Jaime
>
>


__________________________________
Do you Yahoo!?
Protect your identity with Yahoo! Mail AddressGuard
http://antispam.yahoo.com/whatsnewfree
3992


From: joe_mcelhaney
Date: Tue Nov 11, 2003 3:00pm
Subject: Re: Nico in The Sandpiper
 
One person who might be able to confirm is Paul Morrissey (if anybody
here knows him). A MATTER OF TIME also contains some actors one would
not normally associate with Minnelli, including Nico's friend Tina
Aumont (badly dubbed), Gabriele Ferzetti (from L'AVVENTURA), Fernando
Rey, and Anna Proclemer, the prostitute from VOYAGE IN ITALY,
although Arkoff cut her out of the final version.


--- In a_film_by@yahoogroups.com, David Ehrenstein
wrote:
> Hmm. A Paris connection would be more likely as she
> was there frequently. But I'm still not entirely
> convinced.
> --- joe_mcelhaney wrote:
>
> > >
> > > --- joe_mcelhaney wrote:
> >
> > Acutally, the interiors for THE SANDPIPER were shot
> > in Paris (due to
> > the tax situation of Taylor/Burton) and not
> > California. Was Nico in
> > Paris then?
> > >
> > >
> > > __________________________________
> > > Do you Yahoo!?
> > > Protect your identity with Yahoo! Mail
> > AddressGuard
> > > http://antispam.yahoo.com/whatsnewfree
> >
> >
>
>
> __________________________________
> Do you Yahoo!?
> Protect your identity with Yahoo! Mail AddressGuard
> http://antispam.yahoo.com/whatsnewfree
3993


From: David Ehrenstein
Date: Tue Nov 11, 2003 3:52pm
Subject: Re: Re: Nico in The Sandpiper
 
Far more Nico-savvy than Paul on this score is Nico
Papatakis (after whom Nico was named, you know)

Tina Aumont is the daughter of Maria Montez.

No, I am not making this up.

She also appears in Bertolucci's "Partner" and Losey's
Modesty Blaise" -- along with a slew of mid-70's
Garrel films.

--- joe_mcelhaney wrote:
> One person who might be able to confirm is Paul
> Morrissey (if anybody
> here knows him). A MATTER OF TIME also contains some
> actors one would
> not normally associate with Minnelli, including
> Nico's friend Tina
> Aumont (badly dubbed), Gabriele Ferzetti (from
> L'AVVENTURA), Fernando
> Rey, and Anna Proclemer, the prostitute from VOYAGE
> IN ITALY,
> although Arkoff cut her out of the final version.


__________________________________
Do you Yahoo!?
Protect your identity with Yahoo! Mail AddressGuard
http://antispam.yahoo.com/whatsnewfree
3994


From: hotlove666
Date: Tue Nov 11, 2003 4:13pm
Subject: Re: Late Minnelli
 
Blake's book has never been finished, because he wrongly believes the
Harvey book did him out of his chance. He's been toiling over
screenplays instead. The news about Matter of Time is the best I've
heard in ages. I haven't heard any more, but I'll follow up. I hope
she's still friends with Scorsese - he could be very helpful. (He has
a good editor.)
3995


From: joe_mcelhaney
Date: Tue Nov 11, 2003 5:01pm
Subject: Re: Late Minnelli/Tina Aumont
 
--- In a_film_by@yahoogroups.com, "hotlove666"
wrote:
> Blake's book has never been finished, because he wrongly believes
the Harvey book did him out of his chance. He's been toiling over
> screenplays instead. The news about Matter of Time is the best I've
> heard in ages. I haven't heard any more, but I'll follow up. I hope
> she's still friends with Scorsese - he could be very helpful. (He
has > a good editor.)

Oh, please tell Blake to dust off his Minnelli manuscript and finish
it when there's a lull in his screenplay writing. How could Harvey's
book have possibly done him out of his chance? The book is terrible
and even if it weren't it's 15 years old now. I'm trying to assemble
a Minnelli anthology at the moment, collecting some pieces that
haven't been collected (going back to the SEQUENCE years), hoping to
have some things translated from the French that have been
unavailable here in English (Douchet, Domarchi, Daney, Fieschi, etc.)
as well as searching for some new pieces on him. If Blake (or anyone
here reading this) is interested, please let me know.

Restoring A MATTER OF TIME would be a heroic effort. Given the
international cast, it's hard to say what shape the "original"
soundtrack is in (Arkoff took the cut away from Minnelli before he
could supervise the dubbing) and it would also need a new score since
Arkoff hired some Italian hack to plug up the holes in all the
material that was cut -- as well as to play over the added stock
footage. Given how weak Liza's performance is in the version we have
now, it would either be very brave of her to restore the film; or it
might give her a second chance since there were reportedly alternate
takes of scenes that Minnelli wanted to use of her which were in the
lab in Rome but which Arkoff would not pay to have shipped to Los
Angeles where Minnelli was doing the cutting.

And yeah, Tina Aumont is Maria's daughter (as well as Jean-Pierre's,
of course). Like Nico, she also made a Fellini film: SATYRICON.
Isabella Rossellini also turns up at the end of A MATTER OF TIME as a
nun (looking just a bit like her mother in THE BELLS OF ST. MARY'S
but given the name of Sister Pia!). In this film about an older
woman passing on her sensibility and her vision to a younger woman,
three famous daughters of six very famous parents (two of them major
film directors)seem to be carrying on their own public family
traditions, albeit each in their very different ways.
3996


From: David Ehrenstein
Date: Tue Nov 11, 2003 5:43pm
Subject: Re: Re: Late Minnelli
 
Marty has aways spoken of her very warmly, but I doubt
they've seen other in years. He would be ideal for
putting "A Matter of Time" together properly. Wish
Liza could be put together properly.

Her rendition of "Do It Again" is the high point of
the released version of the film.

I'd always been under the impression that it was
"unfinished" anyway on that Minnelli's health, and the
money, ran out before he could shoot the film he
really wanted to make.

It has the ugliest-looking credits ever slapped on a
movie.
--- hotlove666 wrote:
> Blake's book has never been finished, because he
> wrongly believes the
> Harvey book did him out of his chance. He's been
> toiling over
> screenplays instead. The news about Matter of Time
> is the best I've
> heard in ages. I haven't heard any more, but I'll
> follow up. I hope
> she's still friends with Scorsese - he could be very
> helpful. (He has
> a good editor.)
>
>


__________________________________
Do you Yahoo!?
Protect your identity with Yahoo! Mail AddressGuard
http://antispam.yahoo.com/whatsnewfree
3997


From: David Ehrenstein
Date: Tue Nov 11, 2003 9:10pm
Subject: Re: Re: Late Minnelli/Tina Aumont
 
"How could Harvey's
book have possibly done him out of his chance? The
book is terrible
and even if it weren't it's 15 years old now. "

A tad harsh, IMO. Harvey certainly had his limitations
-- made worse by the fact that he was trying to outrun
"Time's Winged Wastebasket" (Gore Vidal's phrase) But
ultimately I can't rouse myself to dis anyone who
calls "Two Weeks in Another Town"
"The Bad and the Beautiful's Little Dividend."

--- joe_mcelhaney wrote:


__________________________________
Do you Yahoo!?
Protect your identity with Yahoo! Mail AddressGuard
http://antispam.yahoo.com/whatsnewfree
3998


From: joe_mcelhaney
Date: Tue Nov 11, 2003 10:09pm
Subject: Re: Late Minnelli/Tina Aumont
 
--- In a_film_by@yahoogroups.com, David Ehrenstein
wrote:
> "How could Harvey's
> book have possibly done him out of his chance? The
> book is terrible
> and even if it weren't it's 15 years old now. "
>
> A tad harsh, IMO. Harvey certainly had his limitations
> -- made worse by the fact that he was trying to outrun
> "Time's Winged Wastebasket" (Gore Vidal's phrase) But
> ultimately I can't rouse myself to dis anyone who
> calls "Two Weeks in Another Town"
> "The Bad and the Beautiful's Little Dividend."
>
> --- joe_mcelhaney wrote:
>
Funny, I don't remember that quip about TWO WEEKS and I just re-read
that section of the book this summer since there's a chapter on TWO
WEEKS in my own (forthcoming) book. (Harvey's book is full of quips,
if I remember correctly.) But what he says about the film itself!
Oy. You're probably right and "terrible" is too harsh a judgement.
If he'd just written a monograph on the musicals it might have been
stronger. Gregg Rickman's review of the book in FILM QUARTERLY was
very good and called particular attention to the fact that Harvey had
the resources of a major publisher behind him (rare in a film book of
this nature) and essentially squandered them.
>
> __________________________________
> Do you Yahoo!?
> Protect your identity with Yahoo! Mail AddressGuard
> http://antispam.yahoo.com/whatsnewfree
3999


From: David Ehrenstein
Date: Wed Nov 12, 2003 1:23am
Subject: Re: Re: Late Minnelli/Tina Aumont
 
I'll be very interested to see what you have to say
about "Two Weeks" Jay, as the film was very important
to me at the time it came out in that it was central
to revising my feelings about Hollywood films.

I love the climactic party ("orgy") scene with Leslie
Uggams singing "Don't Blame Me," and Doulas' final
flip-out cued by the fall of a Minnelli-yellow scarf.

And to top it all off he's standing next to Peggy
Moffat when it does!

It would make a great double-feature with "Contempt."

--- joe_mcelhaney wrote:


__________________________________
Do you Yahoo!?
Protect your identity with Yahoo! Mail AddressGuard
http://antispam.yahoo.com/whatsnewfree
4000


From: Fernando Verissimo
Date: Tue Nov 11, 2003 3:41am
Subject: ELEPHANT & THE SHINING, KEN PARK
 
*this message contains SPOILERS*

There are some other references to THE SHINING in ELEPHANT: like Jack Torrance, Alex is a frustrated artist and the killers examining the school plans reminds me of Jack watching his prey walking the miniature labyrinth.

This kind of thing should not come as a surprise since it's made by the same guy that gave us his own private PSYCHO, but it troubles me anyway. Is Van Sant encouraging us to make some kind of a transverse reading, and, if that's the case (which I think it is), what's his point?

THE SHINING, among other things, is a study about a father-child relationship -- it shows the father as impotent, destructive. Although ELEPHANT leaves some space for us to imagine the possibility of a reconciliation through disaster, as we see John and his father meeting in the end and trying to understand the massacre together, it's "father figures" are equally impotent and destructive (I'm not thinking only about John's father, but also about the principal, who is the only victim that hears an explanation of why he is killed -- it happens in the sequence that features Bennie, also).

Also, deliberately, we are never able to see Alex's parents, even when his mother shows up in a scene. Far from suggesting that Van Sant is trying to establish a cause or explanation for the massacre (after all, Alex's partner is killed before fully explaining his reasons by Alex himself, the mentor), I can't help to regard his references to THE SHINING as an invitation for us to take a shortcut through Kubrick's film as a way to understand Van Sant's own commentaries on fatherhood.

Regarding this aspect, other film that seems to be a major influence to ELEPHANT is Larry Clark's and Ed Lachman's KEN PARK. Apart from the obvious relations between Van Sant's and Clark's oeuvres in a general way, it seems to me that these films relate in such a wide variety of approaches, methods and themes (KEN PARK itself making quite a strong case of fatherhood as a destructive instance). Even when it comes to the simple yet excepcional (in both cases) use of the cards displaying the character's names as a way of introducing their stories (I can't tell exactly if the printing type used in the cards is the same, but that's an impression from a first viewing).

I'm currently writing an article about the relations between these films, so I'd really benefit from your opinions. I'm also pretty curious about your thoughts on KEN PARK, which I think is a great film, but I'm quite alone trying to champion it.

Fernando
www.contracampo.com.br


Bill wrote:
Second of all SPOILER as I hinted in an earlier post, he is an
hommage to Scatman Crothers in The Shining. (J. Hoberman's rather
supercillioius review, like mine before I started trimming,
emphasizes the similarities between the corridors of the school and
the corridors of the Overlook.)

Like Crothers, Bennie is an aborted deus ex machina, whose entire
trajectory we follow only to have the mission brutally and stupidly
terminated seconds after he comes within sight of one of the killers.
(According to Newsweek, by the way, SK filmed the last shot of
Crothers getting out of the Snowcat and going up to the door of the
Overlook 85 times.)

The moment where Bennie helps the girl out the window is indeed
touching, and continues the Kubrick analogy because at the end Danny
and Wendy drive off in Scatman's Snowcat, which wouldn't have been
there if he hadn't driven it there and gotten killed - Bennie's
heroism is also not completely in vain.

[Non-text portions of this message have been removed]

a_film_by Main Page
Home    Film    Art     Other: (Travel, Rants, Obits)    Links    About    Contact