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4101


From:
Date: Fri Nov 14, 2003 4:08pm
Subject: Re: Welles and cutting
 
"The unseen Welles movie I've written most about, "The Dreamers," looks to be
a return, actually, to the more measured cutting style of some of the other
films."

Where have you written about this, Peter? I'd like to read.

Brent
4102


From:
Date: Fri Nov 14, 2003 4:09pm
Subject: Re: Welles and cutting
 
"No, he never gave him one dime. Jaglom is the THE most
disgusting Phoebe in the history of the cinema."

Whoa, what's a "Phoebe"?
4103


From:
Date: Fri Nov 14, 2003 4:16pm
Subject: Re: Re: Welles & IVAN THE TERRIBLE
 
"Interesting that Welles would do a flip flop on IVAN, from enjoying
it while watching it with Wilson (I think Rita Hayworth was with them
too) then officially criticize the film later, at one point even
calling IVAN the worst film ever made by a great cineaste (which it
most emphatically is NOT)."

My memory of his initial newspaper piece is that his response was pretty mixed, largely positive though a bit condescending (think he says he napped through bits of it -- or Rita accused him of nodding off but he responded he was deep in thought or something)

"I wonder to what extent he may also have resented the film on some
level in that Eisenstein was clearly pushing the envelope here and
succeeding, making the kind of baroque extravaganza -- about as
formally audacious as the cinema can get -- while still making a work
which appealed to a popular spectator, certainly one of Welles's
goals as well but one in which popular success usually eluded him?"

Did IVAN succeed anywhere with a mass of popular spectators, to use your term? I'm asking, I don't know.
4104


From: David Ehrenstein
Date: Fri Nov 14, 2003 4:25pm
Subject: Re: Welles and cutting
 
"All About Eve" -- last scene.

Back in the 60's the waiters at Max's Kansas City were
called "The Phoebes."

--- kitebw@a... wrote:
> "No, he never gave him one dime. Jaglom is the THE
> most
> disgusting Phoebe in the history of the cinema."
>
> Whoa, what's a "Phoebe"?
>


__________________________________
Do you Yahoo!?
Protect your identity with Yahoo! Mail AddressGuard
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4105


From: jpcoursodon
Date: Fri Nov 14, 2003 4:32pm
Subject: Re: Welles on Minnelli and others
 
--- In a_film_by@yahoogroups.com, kitebw@a... wrote:
> In a message dated 11/13/2003 5:41:39 PM Eastern Standard Time,
> jpcoursodon@y... writes:
>
> > In the same interview he also put down Nicholas Ray: "I'm not
> > interested. I walked out after four reels of Rebel Without a
Cause. I
> > get angry just thinking about that movie."
>
> Did he go into more detail about his gripe with that film? I'd be
interested
> to know. The rest of those judgements stand at odds with other
remarks, maybe
> he was trying to get a rise out of his audience.
>
[Non-text portions of this message have been removed]

No he didn't. That was the entire quotation. They (Bazin, Bitsch,
Domarchi, the interviewers) should have pressed him. Why such intense
dislike?
4106


From:
Date: Fri Nov 14, 2003 11:53am
Subject: Re: Re: Welles and K. Anger
 
In a message dated 11/14/03 10:55:47 AM, vincentlobrutto@y... writes:

>All the wine commercials, and appearances on hokey tv shows can never ever
>change that.

And those wine commercials (and silly roles as an actor) frequently
subsidized his own work as a director! It's true that he was never able to complete
many of those self-subsidized projects, but, as Jonathan R. has often said, each
one remained incomplete for different reasons. (With "The Other Side of the
Wind," it was entirely a legal thing; "Don Quixote," on the other hand, you
could speculate that he enjoyed working and re-working so much that he may have
never wanted to 'finish' it.) Plus there's the point I always make: an
unfinished, fragmentary Welles film is worth a hundred finished movies by John Q.
Hollywood. We just have to learn to accept his unfinished cinema as a
legitimate part of his canon.

The story of Spielberg not helping Welles out is well documented and was
confirmed to me personally by Welles' close friend Jim Steinmeyer. Welles wanted
Spielberg's wife at the time, Amy Irving, to act in Welles' film "Cradle Will
Rock" (based on the true events surrounding Welles' attempts to stage the play
of the same name in the '30s). Welles, Irving, and Spielberg went out to
lunch. Not only did Spielberg not offer any financial support whatsoever, but he
left Welles with the check for the lunch.

I'm also not too keen on comparing Welles and Anger. Welles is possibly my
favorite filmmaker - narrative or non-narrative. Anger is someone whose work
I'm just discovering and love; "Puce Moment" is truly amazing!

Peter
4107


From: jpcoursodon
Date: Fri Nov 14, 2003 5:01pm
Subject: Re: Welles on Minnelli and others
 
--- In a_film_by@yahoogroups.com, "Jaime N. Christley"
wrote:
>
> > He liked Dreyer, Mizoguchi, Jerry Lewis (as comedian), De Sica
(bad
> auteurist rep), Ford (of course), Hawks, Walsh, Lang (!), Lubitsch,
> Murnau, Rene Clair, Renoir ("I've loved him most of all).
>
> -Jaime

In that same 1958 interview, of course, Welles made the famous
statement that before making Citizen Kane, he watched Stagecoach
forty times, and his explanation for it was interesting: "I didn't
need to follow the example of someone who had something to say, but
of someone who would showe me how to say what i had to say."

In another interview (a press conference before the screening of
Touch of Evil at the Bruxelles Film Festival) Welles made the point
that most film directors are just technicians, or just good with
actors, and have no recognizable personality (they could play musical
chairs and exchange their films and no one would know the
difference). Only five per cent are true fimmnakers: in their case
the difference would be glaring. You can't mistake a Renoir film for
another's: "he writes his name on every frame."

Auteurists can drink to that.

JPC
4108


From: joe_mcelhaney
Date: Fri Nov 14, 2003 5:04pm
Subject: Re: Welles & IVAN THE TERRIBLE
 
--- In a_film_by@yahoogroups.com, kitebw@a... wrote:
> >
> Did IVAN succeed anywhere with a mass of popular spectators, to use
your term? I'm asking, I don't know.

Part I of IVAN was a great success within the Soviet Union, winning
the Stalin prize. Welles was only commenting on Part I and his
offical mixed response was more typical of the kind of reception IVAN
received here (a reception which had its basis in politics as much as
aesthetics)although there was some strong support for the film: TIME
placed IVAN on its Ten Best list for 1947 and Chaplin sent Eisenstein
a telegram calling Part I "the greatest historic film that has ever
been made." As far as people lining up in great droves for it here
in 1946-47, that I don't know but then that so rarely happens for
foreign language films.

Part II is another story entirely. Stalin banned it and it was not
released until 12 years later.
4109


From: Dan Sallitt
Date: Fri Nov 14, 2003 5:11pm
Subject: Re: Re: Welles on auteurism
 
> In another interview (a press conference before the screening of
> Touch of Evil at the Bruxelles Film Festival) Welles made the point
> that most film directors are just technicians, or just good with
> actors, and have no recognizable personality (they could play musical
> chairs and exchange their films and no one would know the
> difference). Only five per cent are true fimmnakers: in their case
> the difference would be glaring. You can't mistake a Renoir film for
> another's: "he writes his name on every frame."
>
> Auteurists can drink to that.

You could argue, though, that people felt that way long before the rise
of auteurism. One contribution of auteurists was to expand the list of
directors with recognizable personalities, so that directors from Hawks
to Joseph H. Lewis to Richard Bartlett were added to that list that
Welles wanted to keep very short. - Dan
4110


From: joe_mcelhaney
Date: Fri Nov 14, 2003 5:33pm
Subject: Re: Welles on Minnelli and others
 
--- In a_film_by@yahoogroups.com, "jpcoursodon"
wrote:
> The rest of those judgements stand at odds with other
> remarks, maybe he was trying to get a rise out of his audience.
> >
> > They (Bazin, Bitsch, Domarchi, the interviewers) should have
pressed him. Why such intense dislike?


Given the strong support for Rossellini on the part of Bazin, for
Bitsch in terms of Ray, and Domarchi in terms of Minnelli, it seems
entirely plausible that Welles (who was also inhaling quite a bit of
scotch during the interview) was baiting the group. Let's not forget
he was a director as well as an actor, not only performing for the
group but also manipulating and provoking them. Also, Ray was a kind
of John Housemen protegee going back to the theater in the 1930s and
later producing THEY LIVE BY NIGHT and ON DANGEROUS GROUND, and
Welles and Houseman were firmly on the outs by this period. Houseman
was having some success in Hollywood at this time (although mainly in
terms of prestige rather than financial reward) while Welles was
grabbing what he could, wherever and whenever. Houseman's other
major collaborator during this period was Minnelli: THE BAD AND THE
BEAUTIFUL, THE COBWEB, LUST FOR LIFE. I also wonder if Welles was
aware of -- and unamused by -- the parody of him in THE BAND WAGON.
4111


From:
Date: Fri Nov 14, 2003 0:43pm
Subject: Re: Welles and cutting
 
In a message dated 11/14/03 11:13:06 AM, kitebw@a... writes:

>Where have you written about this, Peter? I'd like to read.

Brent, here's my piece on "The Dreamers":

http://www.sensesofcinema.com/contents/03/27/welles_dreamers.html

Thank you for your interest!

Peter
4112


From:
Date: Fri Nov 14, 2003 0:43pm
Subject: Re: Re: Welles & IVAN THE TERRIBLE
 
In a message dated 11/14/2003 12:10:12 PM Eastern Standard Time,
joe_mcelhaney@y... writes:

> As far as people lining up in great droves for it here
> in 1946-47, that I don't know but then that so rarely happens for
> foreign language films.

Did people line up for it in Russia, I wonder? I'm just not sure that
critical acclaim or even the positive responses of repertory or college audiences
(both of which Welles certainly has as well) are enough to certify it a popular
success. And I'm not knocking Ivan -- it's my favorite Eisenstein -- just
having some difficulty with the comparison.

Brent


[Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
4113


From:
Date: Fri Nov 14, 2003 0:47pm
Subject: Re: Re: Welles on auteurism
 
In a message dated 11/14/2003 12:19:29 PM Eastern Standard Time,
sallitt@p... writes:

> One contribution of auteurists was to expand the list of
> directors with recognizable personalities, so that directors from Hawks
> to Joseph H. Lewis to Richard Bartlett were added to that list that
> Welles wanted to keep very short. - Dan

But there's also Welles the student of Ford and Welles the public advocate of
Wm. Castle's "When Strangers Marry." So I'm not sure he was such an arthouse
hardliner.

Brent


[Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
4114


From:
Date: Fri Nov 14, 2003 0:54pm
Subject: Re: Re: Welles on Minnelli and others
 
In a message dated 11/14/2003 12:42:06 PM Eastern Standard Time,
joe_mcelhaney@y... writes:

> Also, Ray was a kind
> of John Housemen protegee going back to the theater in the 1930s and
> later producing THEY LIVE BY NIGHT and ON DANGEROUS GROUND, and
> Welles and Houseman were firmly on the outs by this period.

In the case of Rebel, my guess is Welles was turned off by the depiction of
the adult world as almost exclusively corrupt, cowardly, and dishonest as
opposed to the untrammeled wildness, beauty, and freedom of Youth. These are just
the kinds of dichotomies he strives to complicate in his own work.

There may well be more than this going on in the film, I don't know it well
enough to say, but if so, I guess he didn't stick around for it.

Brent


[Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
4115


From: hotlove666
Date: Fri Nov 14, 2003 6:12pm
Subject: Welles and 'Rebel', money, Spielberg, Jaglom
 
The depiction of Jim's father is painfully bad caricature. There is
indeed more than that going on later, however.

The fraternal rivalry interpretation of Welles' remarks about
Minnelli and Ray sounds dead-on to me.

As for the performance aspect of that interview: It's been oft-told,
but here goes again. When I interviewed him on the phone for 3
hours in 1982, it was at his insistence - he was in NY, I was in
LA, and he made me wait a week before finally calling and doing
the interview. In the middle of it he said, "I'm glad I can't see your
face - I'll tell fewer lies to please you."

The Cradle Will Rock was sabotaged first by the producer, who
was unskilled in the not-always-contemptible rules of Hollywood
and shot himself in the foot a couple of times in front of
witnesses, then by Spielberg refusing to make one call to Uni
Classics to repair the damage, because he didn't want his wife
in Rome boinking Italians - the film was going to be shot at
Cinecitta.

As for his not helping financially, Spielberg is a tightwad.

Jaglom is much worse than that. He had a million lunches with
Welles, portrayed himself everywhere as his champion and
didn't put up any money when star financing for Brass Ring fell
through. (Henry is from a family of Swiss bankers - he's very
wealthy.) He did, however, surreptitiously tape all those lunch
conversations - something Welles was furious about when he
learned of it, two weeks before his death. Now Henry gives out
Orson Welles Awards and uses OW as the logo on his films - I
believe: I don't go to them. Creepy, huh?

He is confronted about his surreptitious taping by a very drunken
Laslo Szabo in Andre S. Labarthe's last "Cineastes de notre
temps," "The Big O." There are things I don't care for in that film,
but the Jaglom scene is worth the price of admission.
4116


From:
Date: Fri Nov 14, 2003 2:34pm
Subject: Re: Welles and Merv and Wine
 
Another tiresome thing about the "Welles reduced to X (hawking wine, doing
magic tricks on talk shows, etc." is that it ignores the fact that he had ALWAYS
done such stuff and apparently took some pleasure in it. Trading "genius"
jokes w/ Charlie McCarthy isn't worlds removed from enduring fat quips from
Johnny Carson, neither is voicing the Shadow that far off from narrating
"Transformers." There's an excellent discussion of the critical unease inspired by
Welles' travels thru the pop stream in "Orson Welles, Shakespeare, and Popular
Culture" (Welles books need better titles!)

I just realized that there's no actual Merv content in this post. To rectify,
will state in passing my excitement that SCTV is finally to be released on
DVD -- their Merv is better than the real thing.

Brent


[Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
4117


From: joe_mcelhaney
Date: Fri Nov 14, 2003 9:45pm
Subject: Re: Welles & IVAN THE TERRIBLE
 
--- In a_film_by@yahoogroups.com, kitebw@a... wrote:
> In a message dated 11/14/2003 12:10:12 PM Eastern Standard Time,
> joe_mcelhaney@y... writes:
>
> > As far as people lining up in great droves for it here
> > in 1946-47, that I don't know but then that so rarely happens for
> > foreign language films.
>
> Did people line up for it in Russia, I wonder? I'm just not sure
that critical acclaim or even the positive responses of repertory or
college audiences both of which Welles certainly has as well) are
enough to certify it a popular success. And I'm not knocking Ivan --
it's my favorite Eisenstein -- just having some difficulty with the
comparison.

I'm sorry but I can't give you any firm figures here. None of my
books on Eisenstein or Russian cinema state in capital letters: BIG
HIT WITH THE PEOPLE. (In 1945, the Soviets may have been busier
lining up for food and coal than for movies.) The fact that the film
won the Stalin prize should tell us, though, that if IVAN did not
break box-office records in the Soviet Union it did well enough. If
it had failed to find an audience it is highly unlikely it would have
won the top prize that year. Stalin had zero interest in art films as
ends in themselves but instead wanted an aesthetically bold Soviet
cinema which could still speak to the masses and be in line with his
politics. NEVSKY was a film which succeeded on that level and so did
part one of IVAN.

As for the ongoing repertory and college status of Welles and
Eisenstein, certainly both remain popular as you state. But speaking
strictly from personal experience, I can truthfully say that, apart
from CITIZEN KANE, Welles is something of a tough sell in
classrooms. Students are not by any means hostile towards Welles but
he is a difficult filmmaker for them, especially with CHIMES AT
MIDNIGHT. They have to be led by the hand and taken through the
films carefully -- which is one of the reasons why they're in a
classroom anyway so that's not a problem. But immediately perceiving
what Welles is up to after KANE is something of which I have found
only a handful of students are capable, although many of them
eventually come around. Surprisingly, the Eisenstein films I show
(STRIKE, POTEMKIN, OCTOBER, NEVSKY, IVAN)don't present the same
problems.

I don't know how many members of this group regularly teach film and
if your own experience either contradicts and confirms my own.
>
> >
>
> [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
4118


From:
Date: Fri Nov 14, 2003 5:08pm
Subject: Re: Re: Welles & IVAN THE TERRIBLE
 
In a message dated 11/14/2003 5:01:46 PM Eastern Standard Time,
joe_mcelhaney@y... writes:

> I'm sorry but I can't give you any firm figures here. None of my
> books on Eisenstein or Russian cinema state in capital letters: BIG
> HIT WITH THE PEOPLE. (In 1945, the Soviets may have been busier
> lining up for food and coal than for movies.) The fact that the film
> won the Stalin prize should tell us, though, that if IVAN did not
> break box-office records in the Soviet Union it did well enough. If
> it had failed to find an audience it is highly unlikely it would have
> won the top prize that year. Stalin had zero interest in art films as
> ends in themselves but instead wanted an aesthetically bold Soviet
> cinema which could still speak to the masses and be in line with his
> politics.

I think it more likely that any film Stalin endorsed would get heavily
promoted and shown and that people would see what they were offered.

My point is really only that I find the idea that Welles was jealous of
Eisenstein for having created a genuinely populist (and popular) work kind of hard
to credit.

That said, I do like Hoberman's description of it as "intermittently the best
Flash Gordon serial ever made."


[Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
4119


From: David Ehrenstein
Date: Fri Nov 14, 2003 10:27pm
Subject: Re: Re: Welles & IVAN THE TERRIBLE
 
I find it all too easy to understand. Look at the
camera angles of middle-period Welles, particularly
"Mr.Arkadin" and "Touch of Evil" -- pure Eisenstein.

I grealy revere Welles as a film artist ("F For Fake"
is my favorite) but he was not only a showman, he was
also a blowhard. The whole bit about looking at
"Stagecoach" over and over is nonsense. The editing
style of "Stagecoach' couldn't have LESS to do with
"Kane," and the editing style of Fitz Lang --
particularly "M" -- couldn't have MORE.

--- kitebw@a... wrote:
> My point is really only that I find the idea that
> Welles was jealous of
> Eisenstein for having created a genuinely populist
> (and popular) work kind of hard
> to credit.



4120


From: hotlove666
Date: Fri Nov 14, 2003 10:52pm
Subject: Welles in the classroom
 
I have never taught film, but I wonder if they could be feeling what I feel - I
don't enjoy Welles' films at all. I find them depressing.

That may just be because of all the depressing experiences I've had with
them, but I think it's intrinsic to the films. The first hour of Kane is fun; the
second is a major bummer. Ambersons is a major bummer and would be
even more so if we could see the whole thing, although there is always the
counterweight of the pleasure that comes from seeing a perfect thing
rounding to its conclusion, however grim. In Welles that pleasure is more akin
to the sublime than it is to beauty, if you go back to the 18th century theories
of the sublime and beautiful as stemming frtom sensations of unpleasure and
pleasure.

It may just be me - I find Chabrol intensely depressing, too. I can't watch him
anymore. And in that case there is no esthetic counterforce, or at least not
enough of one.

Undoubtedly Eisenstein was striving to make films for the masses, like
Hitchcock, and I think he succeeded on the whole. That's why they are both
so pleasurable.


4121


From: jpcoursodon
Date: Fri Nov 14, 2003 11:14pm
Subject: Welles in 1958 interview (again)
 
I just pulled out "This Is Orson Welles" -- a book edited by a member
of this Group, and to which at least four other members contributed
in some way (according to the acknowledgments) -- and opened it at
random and this is what you read on page 140, where Bogdanovich reads
to Welles from the famous 1958 interview and Welles makes fun of his
accent in French. Welles: "I don't know what I told 'em. They put
down what they wanted to hear. I know just how it went: 'Qu'est-ce
que vous pensez de Meezagooochee?' 'Ah!' The big approving 'Ah!' you
understand, because I'd be getting too tired by then to compose
anything more complicated by way of a sentence in cinematic French...
In fact all I did say was 'Ah!'"

Some of the above should be in italics, and I skipped a bit.

So the "Ah!" became "J'admire le cinema japonais, Mizoguchi et
Kurosawa..." -- which was standard procedure at the time... Welles
pretended to PB he had never heard of Mizoguchi, just as he had
pretended to the Cahiers trio he had forgotten Fritz Lang's name, had
never seen a film by him.


By the way, this seems to indicate that the interview was conducted
in French, which Cahiers never made clear. I wonder how much
rewriting of the tapes' content went on to get the finished product.

JPC
4122


From: jpcoursodon
Date: Fri Nov 14, 2003 11:27pm
Subject: Re: Welles in the classroom
 
An auteurist who hates Welles? WOW! Aren't you afraid of being
excommunicated, Bill?

This is scary. next someone might come out of the closet and say
he/she can't stand Hawks, or Sirk, or Ophuls. Then the end of the
auteurist world as we know it is in sight...

I don't know your reasons for disliking Chabrol, but I tend to
agree. recently I've looked again at several of his most highly
praised films and found them very dated, flimsy and superficial.

JPC
--- In a_film_by@yahoogroups.com, "hotlove666"
wrote:
> I have never taught film, but I wonder if they could be feeling
what I feel - I
> don't enjoy Welles' films at all. I find them depressing.
>
> That may just be because of all the depressing experiences I've had
with
> them, but I think it's intrinsic to the films. The first hour of
Kane is fun; the
> second is a major bummer. Ambersons is a major bummer and would be
> even more so if we could see the whole thing, although there is
always the
> counterweight of the pleasure that comes from seeing a perfect
thing
> rounding to its conclusion, however grim. In Welles that pleasure
is more akin
> to the sublime than it is to beauty, if you go back to the 18th
century theories
> of the sublime and beautiful as stemming frtom sensations of
unpleasure and
> pleasure.
>
> It may just be me - I find Chabrol intensely depressing, too. I
can't watch him
> anymore. And in that case there is no esthetic counterforce, or at
least not
> enough of one.
>
> Undoubtedly Eisenstein was striving to make films for the masses,
like
> Hitchcock, and I think he succeeded on the whole. That's why they
are both
> so pleasurable.
4123


From:
Date: Fri Nov 14, 2003 6:29pm
Subject: Welles and the masses
 
On the subject of Welles and the masses, there's a great quote from either
"Filming 'Othello'" or "Filming 'The Trial'" in which Welles says with a laugh
that he's been looking for a mass audience all his life. To echo something
Jonathan told me when I interviewed him for my piece on "The Dreamers," I think
that Welles really felt he could connect with audiences if his films were
distributed properly. Sometimes he may have been misguided in believing this; I
have a hard time imagining an "F for Fake" reaching a widely appreciate mass
audience (at least in America). But isn't there an anecdote in Joseph McBride's
"Orson Welles" where he talks about seeing "Chimes" at some run-down theatre
during the last day of its run with a wildly enthusiastic crowd of (pardon the
expression) non-cinephiles, just regular people? And at least 1/3 (or maybe
more) of the audience who first saw the original "Ambersons" felt it was one of
the greatest films ever made.

Peter


[Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
4124


From: jpcoursodon
Date: Fri Nov 14, 2003 11:50pm
Subject: Re: Welles and the masses
 
Welles said he had made Touch of Evil for the widest possible
audience, but the film failed in the US for lack of promotion -- no
one saw it. Was he wrong in thinking so? The problem with Welles and
audiences was that at the time (the forties and fifties)all movies
were supposed to please the general audience (the "masses"?)and
Ambersons, among others, was not likely to delight everybody --
although interestingly, as Peter mentions, close to half of the
comment cards at the "disastrous" Pomona preview were favorable
("Exceedingly good;" "Magnificent;" "best picture I've ever seen")
This, mind you, from people who had come to see The Fleet's in. Today
as stylistically daring a film would find its own audience (people
like those who loved the film at that Pomona preview). But of course
Welles was ahead of its time and no one knew how to market his stuff.
JPC




--- In a_film_by@yahoogroups.com, ptonguette@a... wrote:
> On the subject of Welles and the masses, there's a great quote from
either
> "Filming 'Othello'" or "Filming 'The Trial'" in which Welles says
with a laugh
> that he's been looking for a mass audience all his life. To echo
something
> Jonathan told me when I interviewed him for my piece on "The
Dreamers," I think
> that Welles really felt he could connect with audiences if his
films were
> distributed properly. Sometimes he may have been misguided in
believing this; I
> have a hard time imagining an "F for Fake" reaching a widely
appreciate mass
> audience (at least in America). But isn't there an anecdote in
Joseph McBride's
> "Orson Welles" where he talks about seeing "Chimes" at some run-
down theatre
> during the last day of its run with a wildly enthusiastic crowd of
(pardon the
> expression) non-cinephiles, just regular people? And at least 1/3
(or maybe
> more) of the audience who first saw the original "Ambersons" felt
it was one of
> the greatest films ever made.
>
> Peter
>
>
> [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
4125


From: programming
Date: Sat Nov 15, 2003 0:33am
Subject: Re: Welles fragments?
 
Peter T. wrote:

> (Of course, this raises another issue entirely; why are avant-garde artists
> like Anger and Brakhage allowed to make fragments of several minutes, but a
> narrative filmmaker like Welles can't?)


Well, Brakhage, Anger, etc. aren't making "fragments." Even though much of
their work is quite short, the films are complete and whole artistic
creations, not fragments of unfinished films (with the exception of Anger's
Puce Moment, which is a fragment).

This is not to diminish any artistic merit that Welles' various fragments or
unfinished projects have (none of which I've seen or know much about). But
there is a necessary difference between a completed film by an artist (no
matter how long or short it is!) and something that never reached a
completed state according to the director's intentions.

[Peter, if you didn't really mean unfinished fragments, but completed short
works, then disregard all above!!]


Best,

Patrick (Chicago)

(Those in Chicago, remember that Chicago Filmmakers is showing some Brakhage
*fragments* Friday, November 21 - 8pm - at Columbia College (600 S. Michigan
Ave.) and Fred and I are doing a semi-public screening of many more
Saturday, November 22 here at Chicago Filmmakers (5243 N. Clark St.). Be
sure to introduce yourself!)
4126


From: Tag Gallagher
Date: Sat Nov 15, 2003 0:43am
Subject: Re: Re: Welles & IVAN THE TERRIBLE
 
Curious this topic, since both Eisenstein and Welles copied Ford so much...
4127


From: Tag Gallagher
Date: Sat Nov 15, 2003 0:46am
Subject: Re: Re: Welles & IVAN THE TERRIBLE
 
Open you eyes! Let the truth pour in!


David Ehrenstein wrote:

> The whole bit about looking at
> "Stagecoach" over and over is nonsense. The editing
> style of "Stagecoach' couldn't have LESS to do with
> "Kane,"
4128


From: jpcoursodon
Date: Sat Nov 15, 2003 1:36am
Subject: Re: Welles & IVAN THE TERRIBLE
 
Let's have a Tag-David fight to the finish on this fascinating
subject. I'll sit ringside.
JPC



--- In a_film_by@yahoogroups.com, Tag Gallagher wrote:
> Open you eyes! Let the truth pour in!
>
>
> David Ehrenstein wrote:
>
> > The whole bit about looking at
> > "Stagecoach" over and over is nonsense. The editing
> > style of "Stagecoach' couldn't have LESS to do with
> > "Kane,"
4129


From: Tag Gallagher
Date: Sat Nov 15, 2003 1:38am
Subject: yuck, yuck & superyuck
 
http://film.guardian.co.uk/features/page/0,11456,1082823,00.html

The Guardian (aka Peter Bradshaw, Xan Brooks, Molly Haskell, Derek
Malcolm, Andrew Pulver, B Ruby Rich and Steve Rose) have tried to bust
into OUR act by naming, in order, "The world's 40 best directors."

Heading the list are two figures of extraordinarily blah and derivative
talent.
Missing from the list are Rohmer, Ferrara and the Straubs.




[Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
4130


From: Patrick Ciccone
Date: Sat Nov 15, 2003 1:52am
Subject: Re: yuck, yuck & superyuck
 
Michael Moore--originality 18
Alexander Sokurov--originality 16

ETC.
4131


From: David Ehrenstein
Date: Sat Nov 15, 2003 1:56am
Subject: Re: yuck, yuck & superyuck
 
Not to mention Patrice Chereau!

This list is worthless.

--- Tag Gallagher wrote:
>
http://film.guardian.co.uk/features/page/0,11456,1082823,00.html
>
> The Guardian (aka Peter Bradshaw, Xan Brooks, Molly
> Haskell, Derek
> Malcolm, Andrew Pulver, B Ruby Rich and Steve Rose)
> have tried to bust
> into OUR act by naming, in order,

__________________________________
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4132


From: David Ehrenstein
Date: Sat Nov 15, 2003 1:57am
Subject: Re: Re: Welles & IVAN THE TERRIBLE
 
OK, you can play Joanne Dru.

--- jpcoursodon wrote:
> Let's have a Tag-David fight to the finish on
> this fascinating
> subject. I'll sit ringside.
> JPC
>
>
>
> --- In a_film_by@yahoogroups.com, Tag Gallagher
> wrote:
> > Open you eyes! Let the truth pour in!
> >
> >
> > David Ehrenstein wrote:
> >
> > > The whole bit about looking at
> > > "Stagecoach" over and over is nonsense. The
> editing
> > > style of "Stagecoach' couldn't have LESS to do
> with
> > > "Kane,"
>
>


__________________________________
Do you Yahoo!?
Protect your identity with Yahoo! Mail AddressGuard
http://antispam.yahoo.com/whatsnewfree
4133


From: Tag Gallagher
Date: Sat Nov 15, 2003 1:58am
Subject: Re: Re: Welles & IVAN THE TERRIBLE
 
You can be John Wayne.


David Ehrenstein wrote:

> OK, you can play Joanne Dru.
>
> --- jpcoursodon wrote:
> > Let's have a Tag-David fight to the finish on
> > this fascinating
> > subject. I'll sit ringside.
> > JPC
> >
> >
> >
> > --- In a_film_by@yahoogroups.com, Tag Gallagher
> > wrote:
> > > Open you eyes! Let the truth pour in!
> > >
> > >
> > > David Ehrenstein wrote:
> > >
> > > > The whole bit about looking at
> > > > "Stagecoach" over and over is nonsense. The
> > editing
> > > > style of "Stagecoach' couldn't have LESS to do
> > with
> > > > "Kane,"
> >
> >
>
>
> __________________________________
> Do you Yahoo!?
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>
> Yahoo! Groups Sponsor
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>
>
>
> To unsubscribe from this group, send an email to:
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[Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
4134


From: Peter Tonguette
Date: Sat Nov 15, 2003 2:00am
Subject: Re: Welles fragments?
 
Patrick writes:

> Well, Brakhage, Anger, etc. aren't making "fragments." Even though
much of
> their work is quite short, the films are complete and whole artistic
> creations, not fragments of unfinished films (with the exception of
Anger's
> Puce Moment, which is a fragment).

Yes, this is exactly right of course - sloppy writing on my part to
not distinguish between the two. (Although in fairness to me, when I
wrote that post I had just viewed "Puce Moment" - a genuine fragment
-
for the first time so I was probably thinking of it.)

The way I would 'justify' the Welles fragments as being part of the
Welles canon would be to invoke, as Bill Krohn has, the fragments of
the great poets (i.e., Kubla Kahn) as a precedent. I myself might
get
a little poetic in my definitions here, but in a sense I would argue
that something as perfect and self-contained as the 'garden fragment'
(detailed in my article) from Welles' unfinished "The Dreamers" is,
in
your words, as much of a "whole artistic creation" as a short work by
Brakhage or long work by Welles.

I wish I could be there for the Brakhage screening!

Peter


--------
4135


From: jpcoursodon
Date: Sat Nov 15, 2003 2:08am
Subject: Re: Welles & IVAN THE TERRIBLE
 
That's not exactly what I had in mind but -- so be it.
(Tag, shouldn't you be packing?)
JPC

--- In a_film_by@yahoogroups.com, Tag Gallagher wrote:
> You can be John Wayne.
>
>
> David Ehrenstein wrote:
>
> > OK, you can play Joanne Dru.
> >
> > --- jpcoursodon wrote:
> > > Let's have a Tag-David fight to the finish on
> > > this fascinating
> > > subject. I'll sit ringside.
> > > JPC
> > >
> > >
> > >
> > > --- In a_film_by@yahoogroups.com, Tag Gallagher
> > > wrote:
> > > > Open you eyes! Let the truth pour in!
> > > >
> > > >
> > > > David Ehrenstein wrote:
> > > >
> > > > > The whole bit about looking at
> > > > > "Stagecoach" over and over is nonsense. The
> > > editing
> > > > > style of "Stagecoach' couldn't have LESS to do
> > > with
> > > > > "Kane,"
> > >
> > >
> >
> >
> > __________________________________
> > Do you Yahoo!?
> > Protect your identity with Yahoo! Mail AddressGuard
> > http://antispam.yahoo.com/whatsnewfree
> >
> > Yahoo! Groups Sponsor
> > ADVERTISEMENT
> > click here
> >
<http://rd.yahoo.com/SIG=12c1ahtdj/M=267637.4116732.5333197.1261774/D=
egroupweb/S=1705021019:HM/EXP=1068947843/A=1853618/R=0/*http://www.net
flix.com/Default?mqso=60178338&partid=4116732>
> >
> >
> >
> > 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
> > <http://docs.yahoo.com/info/terms/>.
>
>
>
>
> [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
4136


From: Peter Tonguette
Date: Sat Nov 15, 2003 2:09am
Subject: Re: yuck, yuck & superyuck
 
It's the sort of list that makes one momentarily embarrassed to be a
Kiarostami fan (if THESE people like him, etc.)

Incidentally, Ms. B. Ruby Rich is the genius who several months ago
tried to peg the lack of successful women directors in Hollywood on
Orson Welles.

Peter


-----
4137


From: jaketwilson
Date: Sat Nov 15, 2003 2:18am
Subject: Re: Welles in the classroom
 
--- In a_film_by@yahoogroups.com, "hotlove666"
wrote:
> I have never taught film, but I wonder if they could be feeling
what I feel - I
> don't enjoy Welles' films at all. I find them depressing.

I'm interpreting this statement as another turn of the spiral, but
even so I'm astonished by it.

As far as Welles not appealing to a mass audience goes, it can't be
just received opinion which has kept KANE atop the consensus Best Of
All Time list -- going by my limited observation, it speaks much more
directly to a modern audience than anything of Eisenstein's.

In general, I don't see anything "difficult" or esoteric about any of
Welles' films, except maybe ARKADIN. With decent marketing, there's
no reason even F FOR FAKE couldn't have been a hit -- if the
assumption is there's no public for idiosyncratic, rambling pseudo-
documentaries, what about BOWLING FOR COLUMBINE?

As for "depressing", I find more optimism in Welles than in, say,
Hitchcock or Lang. Change and decay is all around in his work, and
death is perhaps his central theme, but his style -- composed, as
various people have intimated here, of fragments that seem constantly
on the verge of flying apart -- displays anything but loss of
vitality, and gestures towards energies that don't exhaust themselves
with the individual ego. Peter says something similar in his DREAMERS
piece, and I think of Joseph Cotton's line in AMBERSONS, only partly
ironic in context: "Times that are gone aren't old, they're dead.
There aren't any times but new times." Or the Chartres scene from F
FOR FAKE, a gentle reproof to auteurists everywhere: "Does a name
really matter all that much?"

JTW
4138


From: Tosh
Date: Sat Nov 15, 2003 2:28am
Subject: Gurardian list
 
Hmm, I can't really comment on the Guardian list of 'great' directors
- because I haven't seen at least half of their (the directors) work.
The ranking of talent is silly -

David Lynch I understand - at least he's consistant -but Scorsese I
think lost his way. 'Gangs of New York' was a major disappointment
to me - and his current Howard Hughes project sounds rather 'who
cares'. I think the days of Taxi Driver, New York, New York,
Goodfellas are way gone. He needs to recharge his creative battery

I was shocked that Godard wasn't on the list. The Cohen
Brothers...it's a joke right? Why wasn't Guy Ritchie on the list?
He's not great, but at least he makes British gangster films which
are enjoyable. Wow! He makes one bad movie with wife - and they
forget him already!


--
Tosh Berman
TamTam Books
http://www.tamtambooks.com
4139


From: Tag Gallagher
Date: Sat Nov 15, 2003 2:26am
Subject: Re: Re: yuck, yuck & superyuck
 
People want to credit Welles with Everything!
How did she reason this one?





Peter Tonguette wrote:

>
>
> Incidentally, Ms. B. Ruby Rich is the genius who several months ago
> tried to peg the lack of successful women directors in Hollywood on
> Orson Welles.
>
4140


From: Richard Modiano
Date: Sat Nov 15, 2003 2:32am
Subject: Re: Space/Gus
 
--- In a_film_by@yahoogroups.com, kitebw@a... wrote:
>
> I'd like to see his shorts, read about one called "The Discipline
of DE" that sounds interesting too (based on the Burroughs story. I'm
not really a fan of WSB but do think that piece should be included in
future collections of writings on Bresson).

The Burroughs piece is not a story. DE refers to "Do Easy" and it's
a way of living, a kind of mindfulness similiar to Buddhist
mindfulness. Burroughs describes what he means by do easy in THE
JOB. I'm guessing that Burroughs collaborated with Van Sant on the
film. Burroughs also collaborated on some movies with Anthony Balch
when he was living in London in the 1960s.

Richard
4141


From: Peter Tonguette
Date: Sat Nov 15, 2003 3:19am
Subject: Re: Welles in the classroom
 
Jake writes:

> In general, I don't see anything "difficult" or esoteric about any
of
> Welles' films, except maybe ARKADIN.

And that is arguably due to the recutting of that film! I believe
Welles himself considered the story of "Arkadin" as the "greatest
popular story" (or something to that effect) he ever put to film.
Who
knows if what Welles thought of as his story's popular appeal would
have translated to the actual film, but I'm pretty confident in
saying
that we just can't tell from the versions of the movie circulating at
the moment.

> I think of Joseph Cotton's line in AMBERSONS, only partly
> ironic in context: "Times that are gone aren't old, they're dead.
> There aren't any times but new times."

I love that line of Cotten's and the way Welles uses it to segue into
the camera move that follows. I think Welles was at once being
ironic
in his use of the line (as he was deeply nostalgic for things past)
but also, kind of, believed in it too (his father was, as is well
known, an inventor and certainly no man could have accomplished as
much as OW did without believing on some level that things will get
better.)

Anyway, I'll be curious for Bill to elaborate on his initial post.
Certainly I know him to be one of the most ardent and insightful
Welles scholars and supporters around. I'll just say that personally
I can't relate to the idea of Welles' work being depressing. Even
when his films are unbearably sad (as they often are; "Chimes at
Midnight" is simply shattering), I get a charge out of them that I
get with very few other artists on this earth. It's the same sort of
charge I get out of a "Make Way For Tomorrow" or "Barry Lyndon" -
works which are, in their way, tragic, even painful, in their
representation of 'the human condition.'

Peter

-----
4142


From: Peter Tonguette
Date: Sat Nov 15, 2003 3:23am
Subject: Re: yuck, yuck & superyuck
 
Tag writes:

> People want to credit Welles with Everything!
> How did she reason this one?

Tag, see post 1826 and the posts which follow:

http://groups.yahoo.com/group/a_film_by/message/1826

Peter


-----
4143


From: filipefurtado
Date: Sat Nov 15, 2003 3:32am
Subject: Re: Re: yuck, yuck & superyuck
 
Well, no Rivette, no Oliveira, no Godard, no Straub, but they
sure find room to Gaspar Noe and Michael Winerbottom.

Filipe


---
Acabe com aquelas janelinhas que pulam na sua tela.
AntiPop-up UOL - É grátis!
http://antipopup.uol.com.br
4144


From: Tag Gallagher
Date: Sat Nov 15, 2003 3:39am
Subject: Re: yuck, yuck & superyuck
 
Welles ought to be on the list. He keeps coming out with new movies.
4145


From: jpcoursodon
Date: Sat Nov 15, 2003 4:54am
Subject: A list is a list...
 
Since the Guardian List is so despicable, I think it is the duty of
everyone in this Group to submit their own list of the 40 Best
Directors (or 20, or 400, or 4, or whatever...)
JPC
4146


From: jaketwilson
Date: Sat Nov 15, 2003 6:07am
Subject: Re: yuck, yuck & superyuck
 
--- In a_film_by@yahoogroups.com, Tag Gallagher wrote:
> http://film.guardian.co.uk/features/page/0,11456,1082823,00.html
>
> The Guardian (aka Peter Bradshaw, Xan Brooks, Molly Haskell, Derek
> Malcolm, Andrew Pulver, B Ruby Rich and Steve Rose) have tried to
bust
> into OUR act by naming, in order, "The world's 40 best directors."
>
> Heading the list are two figures of extraordinarily blah and
derivative
> talent.

All lists drawn up by groups, rather than individuals, tend to be
worthless except as indexes of who's fashionable and who's not. But
I'll happily give three cheers for Lynch and two for Scorsese.

JTW
4147


From: Robert Keser
Date: Sat Nov 15, 2003 6:10am
Subject: Re: Re: yuck, yuck & superyuck
 
This is the Freedom Fries List! Gaspar Noe, instead of Resnais,
Marker, Godard, Rivette, Assayas, Téchiné, or Chéreau.
And what about Frederick Wiseman and Im Kwon-Taek and
Seijun Suzuki and Bellocchio and the Straubs? And none of
the grand elders, from Oliveira to Ichikawa to Antonioni to Ingmar
Bergman. Oh, please...

--Robert Keser

--- In a_film_by@yahoogroups.com, "filipefurtado"
wrote:
> Well, no Rivette, no Oliveira, no Godard, no Straub, but they
> sure find room to Gaspar Noe and Michael Winerbottom.
4148


From: Dan Sallitt
Date: Sat Nov 15, 2003 6:13am
Subject: Re: A list is a list...
 
> Since the Guardian List is so despicable, I think it is the duty of
> everyone in this Group to submit their own list of the 40 Best
> Directors (or 20, or 400, or 4, or whatever...)

This list isn't to my taste, and there are a few odd surprises in there
(Pawlikowski?), but on the whole I think it's a pretty reasonable
summary of which directors are getting the most attention these days
from serious filmgoers. Auteurist taste has always been a little
off-center, so it's not surprising that the Guardian's choices rub
A_Film_By the wrong way.

Here are some of the people from whom I'd most hope for a home run if
they made a film right now:

Breillat
Dardennes Bros.
Leigh
Chabrol
Rohmer
Haynes
Desplechin
Russell
Suwa
Doillon
Davies
Armitage
Malick
Hartley
Larry Clark
Kiarostami
Pintilie
Tsai
Hong
Imamura

- Dan
4149


From: Robert Keser
Date: Sat Nov 15, 2003 6:17am
Subject: Re: yuck, yuck & superyuck
 
The question Spielberg also raises its pretty head here: how
did he get edged out by the likes of Lukas Moodysson and
Pawel Pawlikowski?

Oh, and where is Hou Hsiao-hsien?!!

--Robert Keser


--- In a_film_by@yahoogroups.com, "jaketwilson" wrote:

> All lists drawn up by groups, rather than individuals, tend to be
> worthless except as indexes of who's fashionable and who's not. But
> I'll happily give three cheers for Lynch and two for Scorsese.
4150


From: Peter Tonguette
Date: Sat Nov 15, 2003 6:54am
Subject: Re: A list is a list...
 
JPC writes:

> Since the Guardian List is so despicable, I think it is the duty of
> everyone in this Group to submit their own list of the 40 Best
> Directors (or 20, or 400, or 4, or whatever...)

As a matter of fact, I've been for the past few months tinkering
with the idea of creating my own personal list of pantheon
directors (named after Sarris' category in "The American
Cinema"), but I'm not sure I'm ready to share it yet.

However you bring up lists at a good time, JP. I've just posted to
the "Files" section of the group the first 'installment' of our
group's Top 10 project. Go there for further description.
Currently "best of all-time" lists are up and soon to come are
everyone's year by year lists.

Peter

---
4151


From: Gabe Klinger
Date: Sat Nov 15, 2003 6:58am
Subject: Re: A list is a list...
 
> This list isn't to my taste, and there are a few odd surprises in there
> (Pawlikowski?), but on the whole I think it's a pretty reasonable
> summary of which directors are getting the most attention these days
> from serious filmgoers.

Yeah, it's a reasonable list, with many agreeable choices and many
disagreeable ones. We see Tsai is there, and yes, it's true, most us
would also list Hou Hsiao-hsien and Edward Yang (and perhaps the petite
or not-so-petite Lee Kang-sheng, who has just made a film as well). I
guess this list is lowbrow enough to include the Wachowski brothers,
but not the Farrellys or Ben Stiller. Some of us just have to live with
that, I guess. Miike is there, but how about Tsui or John Woo? They
would edge him off my list, any day. Young Samira is there, but no
Panahi. I would imagine Assayas, Maddin, Denis, Jarmusch, and Ang Lee
almost made the list...

Anyway, what I really want to know is: do our list members really think
Ferrara, Resnais, Antonioni (c'mon), and even Godard are working at the
top of their powers?

I would say Chantal Akerman is doing some very interesting things these
days...

Adding to Dan's list

de Oliveira
Jia Zhang-ke
Laurent Cantet
Claire Denis
Teresa Villaverde
Naomi Kawase
Amos Gitai
Darezhan Omirbaev
Lou Ye
Jose-Luis Guerin
Pedro Costa
Jane Campion
Noemie Lvovsky
Nagasaki Shunichi
Alain Guiraudie
Lee Chang-dong
Philippe Grandrieux
Pablo Trapero
Kiyoshi Kurosawa
Christopher Münch

and Nanni Moretti!

(Monteiro, you could say, is still at the top of his game, but he's
dead...alas)

Gabe
4152


From: Tosh
Date: Sat Nov 15, 2003 7:13am
Subject: Re: A list is a list...
 
At the least I think Godard's work is always interesting, and 'Praise
of Love' I thought was fantastic.


>
>Anyway, what I really want to know is: do our list members really think
>Ferrara, Resnais, Antonioni (c'mon), and even Godard are working at the
>top of their powers?
>

--
Tosh Berman
TamTam Books
http://www.tamtambooks.com
4153


From: Dan Sallitt
Date: Sat Nov 15, 2003 7:14am
Subject: Re: A list is a list...
 
> Anyway, what I really want to know is: do our list members really think
> Ferrara, Resnais, Antonioni (c'mon), and even Godard are working at the
> top of their powers?

I really liked Resnais' ON CONNAIT LA CHANSON, so I'm open to the
possibility in his case at least.

> Teresa Villaverde
> Jose-Luis Guerin

Don't know their work at all.

> Naomi Kawase

I want to see one more Kawase film before Pantheonizing her, but she's
definitely got it going on.

> Pedro Costa

Gabe, what have you seen by Costa? Are there consensus classics? I
keep hearing good things about him lately - missed my one chance to see
some of his films when they showed at BAM a few years back.

> Alain Guiraudie

Did you catch his new one, which I had hoped would be at Toronto?

> Lee Chang-dong

Three fine films in a row from this guy.

- Dan
4154


From: George Robinson
Date: Sat Nov 15, 2003 7:27am
Subject: For early cinema archeology buffs
 
Anyone on the list who is interested in the various forerunners of the
motion picture will want to take a look at this website, as described in The
Scout Report (an excellent e-newsletter about new websites and the like).

Chronophotographical Projections [Macromedia Flash Reader]
http://web.inter.nl.net/users/anima/index.htm

The process of chronophotography was the name given by Etienne-Jules Marey
in 1882 to describe the time (chronos) photographs of movement sequences.
Needless to say, documenting these various temporal processes, whether it
was a horse running around a track or people walking, was an immensely
difficult procedure. Paying homage to this important predecessor to the
modern motion picture, this website contains a host of materials on the
various individuals who made substantial contributions to this field during
the 19th and early 20th centuries. Along with short video clips, the site
contains extended profiles of key individuals, such as Ottomar Anschutz,
George Demeny, and A.M. Worthington, who was renowned for his early studies
of splashes that involved dropping a ball into a pan containing a mixture of
milk and water. One particular additional feature of this interesting site
is a section dedicated to providing text and images of early period motion
picture machines that were patented in the United States from 1861 to 1897.
The patents profiled here range from Coleman Sellers 1861 "new and useful
Improvement in the Mode of Exhibiting Stereoscopic Pictures of Moving
Objects" to the 1897 patent filed by Thomas A. Edison for a "kinetographic
camera."

George Robinson
The man who does not read good books
has no advantage over the man who cannot read them.
--Mark Twain
4155


From: Patrick Ciccone
Date: Sat Nov 15, 2003 7:38am
Subject: Varia
 
Gabe--
I think Godard is at the top of his powers. I may prefer some of his
1960s films for personal reasons (PIERROT, CONTEMPT, ALPHAVILLE) but I
think IN PRAISE OF LOVE, ORIGIN OF THE 21st CENTURY, HISTOIRES,
NOUVELLE VAGUE rank among his greatest work.

I've detected some curious anti-Godard sentiment here, which I find
funny, since I think he's one of the all time greats (my two favorite
filmmakers are Bresson and Godard, though I'm not asking for everyone
to share that taste).

Tag--
Who besides those three excluded from Guardian's hideous poll would
you pick? I hate that list too!

David--
I don't know too much about Frank O'Hara, but certainly a biopic could
belong to the great films (0NCE UPON A TIME IN AMERICA, maybe POLA X)
which end with a bizarro vehicle death. I took Kenneth Koch's last
poetry classat Columbia, and his pain at O'Hara's death was still
palpable forty years some later.

Patrick
4156


From: Tosh
Date: Sat Nov 15, 2003 7:44am
Subject: Re: Varia
 
Bresson and Godard can't go wrong with those two!


>Gabe--
>I think Godard is at the top of his powers. I may prefer some of his
>1960s films for personal reasons (PIERROT, CONTEMPT, ALPHAVILLE) but I
>think IN PRAISE OF LOVE, ORIGIN OF THE 21st CENTURY, HISTOIRES,
>NOUVELLE VAGUE rank among his greatest work.
>
>I've detected some curious anti-Godard sentiment here, which I find
>funny, since I think he's one of the all time greats (my two favorite
>filmmakers are Bresson and Godard, though I'm not asking for everyone
>to share that taste).

--
Tosh Berman
TamTam Books
http://www.tamtambooks.com
4157


From: Gabe Klinger
Date: Sat Nov 15, 2003 8:02am
Subject: Re: A list is a list...
 
Dan wrote:

> > Naomi Kawase
>
> I want to see one more Kawase film before Pantheonizing her, but she's
> definitely got it going on.

Early in the year I saw LETTER FROM A YELLOW CHERRY BLOSSOM, an hour
long film on a dying friend of Kawase's. Very beautiful. And in 2002 I
saw SKY WIND FIRE AND EARTH, which is 40 minutes I think, but very
dense, starring Kawase herself. I'd like to see it again -- I wasn't in
the mode to fully understand it but I could appreciate the style.

> > Pedro Costa
>
> Gabe, what have you seen by Costa?  Are there consensus classics?

Several a_film_by members consider "Oů gît votre sourire enfoui?" a
masterpiece. I saw the long-cut in Rotterdam and would jump at the
chance to see it again. Costa shoots the Straubs in the dark, from
their backs, as they edit SICILIA! Costa had a funny antic about it
when we all of us fans accosted him after the screening. That the
editing room was actually a classroom, and behind the Straubs and
Costa's camera were several students. At the beginning of the film, the
room was practically full. By the end of the film, and after Straub's
many rants on Chaplin, Ford and who knows what else, there were only
one or two students still lingering. Adrian Martin has a detailed take
on the film in his piece on Rotterdam '02 for Senses of Cinema. I
missed my chance to see IN VANDA'S ROOM, a 3-hour dv film about a junky
named Vanda, but the boys at Contracampo dug it. Anyway it sounds like
my kind of movie. And OSSOS, while not as extreme as IN VANDA'S ROOM
(from what I can gather about the latter), is a great film, maybe a
masterpiece (I have only seen a crappy screener of this one). Enough
for me to be convinced he's a major talent.

> > Alain Guiraudie

> Did you catch his new one, which I had hoped would be at Toronto?

No. I have seen DU SOLEIL POUR LES GUEUX which had a nice atmosphere,
and CE VIEUX RĘVE QUI BOUGE, which was like nothing I have seen.

> > Lee Chang-dong
>
> Three fine films in a row from this guy.

I learned from Tony Rayns that Lee is also some kind of Korean
ambassador for the arts/cultural attache (not to mention an
accomplished novelist).

Gabe
4158


From: George Robinson
Date: Sat Nov 15, 2003 8:21am
Subject: A list is . . .
 
Without getting into the regular wrangle over list-making pro and con, and
admitting that the Guardian list is a mess, in large part because it is
unclear just what the criteria for inclusion really is -- other than to be
breathing and under 65 -- there are certainly a lot of interesting people
missing.

Someone said Ang Lee, but he's on their list. However, if the only
qualification is to still be working, I would add:

Godard
Park Kwang-Su
Hou Hsiao Hsien
Akerman
Straub/Huillet
the Dardenne Bros.
the Taviani Bros.
Nanni Moretti
Chris Marker
Oliveira
Fred Wiseman
Gitai
Mike Leigh
Robert Guedigian
Claire Denis
Edward Yang
Desplechin
Rohmer
Chabrol
Rivette
Loach
Cantet
Eastwood
Francesco Rosi
Avi Mograbi (although he's really a video-maker)
Alan Rudolph
Ousmane Sembene
Otar Iosseliani
Stephen Frears
Bill Condon

And if they're dead-set on including people with only one feature to date:
Julie Bertuccelli
Dover Kosashvili
Ron Havilio (only one feature, but it's six hours long)
Julie Dash

I'm surprised that Spike Lee wasn't on the list -- or did I miss him? I
don't like him at all but he certainly is more interesting than some of the
choices.


And their taste in documentarians is deplorable:
Michael "I'm the only political filmmaker in the world, so love me or you're
evil" Moore and Errol "Mr. Smug" Morris? Please.

George Robinson






The man who does not read good books
has no advantage over the man who cannot read them.
--Mark Twain
4159


From: hotlove666
Date: Sat Nov 15, 2003 9:51am
Subject: Re: Welles in the classroom, the fragments
 
I don't hate Welles' or his films: I loved him and find his films
depressing. They aren't films I would watch for pleasure. As the
thread-head indicates, I was mentioning this as a possible reason why
students have to be sold on Welles. I didn't spend 11 years of my
life on Four Men on a Raft because I hate Welles!

There's a very late Keats fragment I've always loved, written when he
was dying - an unfinished sonnet called "This living hand." Like
Kubla Khan, it is a poem whose genre is "Fragment." I think the
garden scene from The Dreamers is the same kind of thing. And
curiously, it's the one Welles film that gives me pure, unadulterated
pleasure - pleasure that is not laced with pain. I could watch it
over and over if I had a copy. (Leos Carax once said that Marguerite
Duras' films are like pop records you want to play over and over.)

It would be interesting to think through sometime why the other
Welles films are so painful - apart from painful personal
associations I have admitted having with the oeuvre. Whatever he
said, I'm not sure Welles really set out to be an entertainer, and
the reason for that may be something that is, in my opinion, at the
heart of his cinema: a distrust of the medium itself.

I only know one film where Hitchcock deliberately set out to torture
the audience, and it's one of his best: The Wrong Man. But all of
Welles' films are made against the audience. Who deserved it, and do
today more than ever!
4160


From: Henrik Sylow
Date: Sat Nov 15, 2003 11:39am
Subject: Re: A list is a list...
 
--- In a_film_by@yahoogroups.com, "jpcoursodon"
wrote:
> Since the Guardian List is so despicable, I think it is the duty of
> everyone in this Group to submit their own list of the 40 Best
> Directors (or 20, or 400, or 4, or whatever...)
> JPC

To be honest, lists are for kids who has no opinion and needs one.

So here are my suggestions for best living directors, whom I feel
comfortable defending :)

01 - Takeshi Kitano
02 - Michael Mann
03 - David Cronenberg
04 - Steven Soderbergh
05 - The Coen Brothers
06 - Woody Allen
07 - Terrence Malick
08 - Zhang Yimou
4161


From: filipefurtado
Date: Sat Nov 15, 2003 0:32pm
Subject: Re: Re: A list is a list...
 
Without no particular order:
Olivier Assayas
Andre Techine
Jacques Rivette
Claude Chabrol
Jean-Luc Godard
Claire Denis
Arnaud Deplaschin
Laurent Cantet
Eric Rhomer
Philippe Garrell
Leos Carax
Marco Bellochio
Nanni Moretti
Dario Argento
Jean-Marie Straub/Danielle Hulliet
Manoel de Oliveira
Pedro Costa
Dardnenne Bros.
Abbas Kiarostami
Apchatpong Wheresakhul
Jia Zhang-Ke
Kiyoshi Kurosawa
Shohei Imamura
Shinji Ayoama
Tsui Hark
Takeshi Kitano
Edward Yang
Hou Hsio-Housein
Tsai Ming-Liang
Alain Resnais
Xavier Beauvais
Wong Kar-Wai
Rogerio Sganzerla
Eduardo Coutinho
Carlos Reichenbach
Clint Eastwood
Abel Ferrara
Brian DePalma
Joe Dante
John Carpenter
Charles Burnett
Richard Linklater
Tim Burton
Wes Anderson
Todd Haynes
Jim Jamursch
Spike Lee
Monte Hellman (well, he's not officialy retired...)

I'm quite sure I forget some worthy names.

Filipe

> JPC writes:
>
> > Since the Guardian List is so despicable, I think it is th
e duty of
> > everyone in this Group to submit their own list of the 40
Best
> > Directors (or 20, or 400, or 4, or whatever...)
>
> As a matter of fact, I've been for the past few months tinke
ring
> with the idea of creating my own personal list of pantheon
> directors (named after Sarris' category in "The American
> Cinema"), but I'm not sure I'm ready to share it yet.
>
> However you bring up lists at a good time, JP. I've just po
sted to
> the "Files" section of the group the first 'installment' of
our
> group's Top 10 project. Go there for further description.
> Currently "best of all-
time" lists are up and soon to come are
> everyone's year by year lists.
>
> Peter
>
> ---
>
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>


---
Acabe com aquelas janelinhas que pulam na sua tela.
AntiPop-up UOL - É grátis!
http://antipopup.uol.com.br
4162


From: filipefurtado
Date: Sat Nov 15, 2003 0:42pm
Subject: Re: A list is a list...
 
> > Pedro Costa
>
> Gabe, what have you seen by Costa? Are there consensus clas
sics? I
> keep hearing good things about him lately -
missed my one chance to see
> some of his films when they showed at BAM a few years back.
>

Both In Vanda's Room and Oů gît votre sourire enfoui? are
great films. And I've heard some very positive things on
Bones. If any of them play anywhere near you, don't miss it.

Gabe, did you like Le Kang-sheng's The Missing?


Filipe


---
Acabe com aquelas janelinhas que pulam na sua tela.
AntiPop-up UOL - É grátis!
http://antipopup.uol.com.br
4163


From: joe_mcelhaney
Date: Sat Nov 15, 2003 2:23pm
Subject: guardian list
 
Even worse than the list is the criteria used: originality,
intelligence, craft, look, etc. It's like a beauty contest or a
horse show. On that note, I think rather than submit our own lists
as to the most important contemporary filmmakers we should vote on
the cutest ones. Randal Kleiser and Chris Columbus could be on the
list somewhere, couldn't they?
4164


From: iangjohnston
Date: Sat Nov 15, 2003 2:54pm
Subject: Re: A list is a list...
 
--- In a_film_by@yahoogroups.com, Gabe Klinger wrote:

> Anyway, what I really want to know is: do our list members really
think
> Ferrara, Resnais, Antonioni (c'mon), and even Godard are working
at the
> top of their powers?

Godard, on the basis of Eloge de l'Amour, an absolute yes!

Ian
4165


From: David Ehrenstein
Date: Sat Nov 15, 2003 3:00pm
Subject: Re: Varia
 
CONTEMPT as well.

O'Hara was known and loved by so many people it's no
exaggeration to say that nobody EVER got over his
death. His funeral is one of the pivotal events of the
60's. In his lifetime he was dismised by the Academy
as a dillitante -- a "minor poet" at best. His work
has not only lived on, it has come to triumph and
dominate. He is master and a giant.

Todd Haynes' Bob Dylan project is fascinating. He
wants to use episodes of his life -- as lived by other
people (male, femlae, young, old, black, white) as a
way of reconstructing what he calls "the secret
history of the 60's." But to me the real"secret" is
O'Hara.

--- Patrick Ciccone wrote:


> David--
> I don't know too much about Frank O'Hara, but
> certainly a biopic could
> belong to the great films (0NCE UPON A TIME IN
> AMERICA, maybe POLA X)
> which end with a bizarro vehicle death. I took
> Kenneth Koch's last
> poetry classat Columbia, and his pain at O'Hara's
> death was still
> palpable forty years some later.
>
> Patrick
>
>


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4166


From: Dan Sallitt
Date: Sat Nov 15, 2003 3:10pm
Subject: Re: A list is . . .
 
> Park Kwang-Su

Haven't seen his films - is your choice mostly based on TO THE STARRY
ISLAND, or do you know other work by him?

> Alan Rudolph
> Stephen Frears

I felt a little bad about leaving these two guys off my list, because
they're two of my favorites. Frears is such a mystery to me: between,
say, 1978 and 1986, I think he's absolutely world-class, and every time
I revisit the films from this period, I'm just more confirmed in that
belief. But, in my eyes at least, he changed so much after LAUNDRETTE,
and I can't find his talent anymore. Rudolph isn't nearly as extreme a
case, and I still admire his work. In fact, I suspect that BREAKFAST OF
CHAMPIONS, made a few years ago, is going to stand as one of his best
films. But, again, I felt a certain self-consciousness creep into his
personality sometime in the 80s: not enough to make him uninteresting,
but enough to make the enclosed atmosphere of his films feel a little
solipsistic. BREAKFAST was based on a script that was kicking around
from Rudolph's early period, and I can't help but wonder if that gave
the film that little bit of external perspective that I miss from him
lately.

> Julie Dash

Would you most recommend DAUGHTERS OF THE DUST? She's one of those
people about whom I heard bad things that stopped me from checking her
out. What's your line on her?

> Michael "I'm the only political filmmaker in the world, so love me or you're
> evil" Moore and Errol "Mr. Smug" Morris? Please.

Gee, I never pick up smugness from Morris. I like him quite a bit,
actually. - Dan
4167


From: Dan Sallitt
Date: Sat Nov 15, 2003 3:12pm
Subject: Re: Re: A list is a list...
 
> Carlos Reichenbach

Who is this fellow? - Dan
4168


From: David Ehrenstein
Date: Sat Nov 15, 2003 4:04pm
Subject: Re: A list is . . .
 
--- Dan Sallitt wrote:
Frears is such a
> mystery to me: between,
> say, 1978 and 1986, I think he's absolutely
> world-class, and every time
> I revisit the films from this period, I'm just more
> confirmed in that
> belief. But, in my eyes at least, he changed so
> much after LAUNDRETTE,
> and I can't find his talent anymore.

Then it's time to get your eyes examined. SAMMY AND
ROSIE GET LAID and THE GRIFTERS are great, great
films.
Everything he does is worth seeing -- which is more
than I can say for most people.

>
> Gee, I never pick up smugness from Morris. I like
> him quite a bit,
> actually. - Dan

Errol Morris is the most pompous, insufferably smug
creature it has ever been my displeasure to meet.


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4169


From: Tag Gallagher
Date: Sat Nov 15, 2003 4:07pm
Subject: Re: A list is . . .
 
Wouldn't hurt to see some Ford sometime, David...

David Ehrenstein wrote:

>
> Everything he does is worth seeing -- which is more
> than I can say for most people.
>
>
4170


From: David Ehrenstein
Date: Sat Nov 15, 2003 4:22pm
Subject: Re: A list is . . .
 
I've seen TONS of Ford. Were he alive today and
working he'd be on my list.

Just looked at that list again, and it's so STUPID as
to be almost unworthy of comment.

Werner Schroeter is another great filmmaker these
Tarantino-Damaged trendies have overlooked.

I'll bet they've never even heard of him.

--- Tag Gallagher wrote:
> Wouldn't hurt to see some Ford sometime, David...
>
> David Ehrenstein wrote:
>
> >
> > Everything he does is worth seeing -- which is
> more
> > than I can say for most people.
> >
> >
>
>
>


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4171


From: samfilms2003
Date: Sat Nov 15, 2003 4:25pm
Subject: Re: yuck, yuck & superyuck
 
> Oh, and where is Hou Hsiao-hsien?!!

That's what I was going to ask !!

Kiarostami & Sokurov "Look 15" what is this GPA ? ;-) "The Wind Will Carry Us" &
"Mother & Son" alone are Look = top of the charts.....

Tsai "Substance=15" ?

For that matter where are Nathaniel Dorsky & Robert Beavers :) :)

-Sam
4172


From: samfilms2003
Date: Sat Nov 15, 2003 4:28pm
Subject: Re: A list is a list...
 
> Anyway, what I really want to know is: do our list members really think
> Ferrara, Resnais, Antonioni (c'mon), and even Godard are working at the
> top of their powers?

If Eloge de L'Amour isn't an artist working at the top of his powers I don't know
what is...

-Sam
4173


From: Jaime N. Christley
Date: Sat Nov 15, 2003 4:31pm
Subject: 21 GRAMS
 
How much less interesting this board becomes when I have to wade
through the slime trail of various egos to get to some actual
content. Please everyone, remember that when you hit "send,"
*everyone* receives your message in e-mail form (unless they choose
to use the web interface, but even there's still a wading factor).
So please, can we keep the one-to-one correspondence in one of its
appropriate channels - private e-mails, phone calls, letters, instant
messages - ? A little netiquette goes a long damned way.

King Vidor's THE BIG PARADE is a masterpiece, incidentally.

I'm not sure if I would like to see 21 GRAMS. I occasionally glanced
at it from the projection booth last night and it looks like it might
be the slickest depressing movie of all time. Also I had to carry
the entire film, on a single (very large) reel, down from the booth
and across the theater to the rewind table behind the screen. As it
turns out, the whole thing about 21 grams is a load of hooey. It's
21 kilograms if it's an ounce.

-Jaime
4174


From: David Ehrenstein
Date: Sat Nov 15, 2003 4:32pm
Subject: Re: Re: A list is a list...
 
Well I love Godard, but "Eloge D'Amour" is a low point
rather than a high, IMO.

By contrast "Nouvelle Vague" is an all-time high.
--- samfilms2003 wrote:
> > Anyway, what I really want to know is: do our
> list members really think
> > Ferrara, Resnais, Antonioni (c'mon), and even
> Godard are working at the
> > top of their powers?
>
> If Eloge de L'Amour isn't an artist working at the
> top of his powers I don't know
> what is...
>
> -Sam
>
>


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4175


From: Tosh
Date: Sat Nov 15, 2003 4:45pm
Subject: Re: Varia
 
David is correct. O'Hara is for sure was a major talent, a great
poet, an interesting critic, and one of the movers and shakers of the
60's. As an important 60's figure, I would put him up there with
Dylan, Beatles, Beuys, Warhol (and the Factory group), Debord,
Barthes, Ali, James Brown, Godard, Brian Wilson, Ono, Motown, Miles,
and maybe symbolically the Kennedys.


Hmmm, the Sixties! What a fascinating era.


>CONTEMPT as well.
>
>O'Hara was known and loved by so many people it's no
>exaggeration to say that nobody EVER got over his
>death. His funeral is one of the pivotal events of the
>60's. In his lifetime he was dismised by the Academy
>as a dillitante -- a "minor poet" at best. His work
>has not only lived on, it has come to triumph and
>dominate. He is master and a giant.
>
>Todd Haynes' Bob Dylan project is fascinating. He
>wants to use episodes of his life -- as lived by other
>people (male, femlae, young, old, black, white) as a
>way of reconstructing what he calls "the secret
>history of the 60's." But to me the real"secret" is
>O'Hara.
>

--
Tosh Berman
TamTam Books
http://www.tamtambooks.com
4176


From: hotlove666
Date: Sat Nov 15, 2003 4:53pm
Subject: Godard
 
For what it's worth, strong agreement with David re: Eloge d'Amour.
There are few Godards I don't love, but that one was left too long in
the microwave. A giveaway is when he sticks on a meretricious last
line to end something that hasn't gelled, as in E d'A or Prenom:
Carmen, as opposed to, say, the last line of Passion, where he IS
working at the top of his form throughout. Certainly Nouvelle Vague
is one of his best since he returned to the art house circuit. I also
quite like Sauve qui peut, Detective, Soigne ta droite, Forever
Mozart, Puissance de la parole, Helas pour moi, Je vous salue Marie,
the Histoire(s), Allemagne neuf zero and 2x50 ans. Haven't seen the
short history of the century yet. While I don't completely agree with
Biette that JLG is white elephant art, it's close enough for
government work.
4177


From: samfilms2003
Date: Sat Nov 15, 2003 4:54pm
Subject: Re: Varia
 
--- In a_film_by@yahoogroups.com, David Ehrenstein wrote:

This sounds very very interesting. I hope he can make this work. But, I hope he
does more structually than filter it through - say Pennebaker - I mean in the way
the fifties were filtered thru Sirk last time - "filtered" being the opperative word --
"Far From Heaven" lacked, well, Fassbinder's bite - and I think he will need
something, not THAT, but something of that intensity here.

You can't get "the ghost electricity howls through the bones of her face" without it.

-Sam

> Todd Haynes' Bob Dylan project is fascinating. He
> wants to use episodes of his life -- as lived by other
> people (male, femlae, young, old, black, white) as a
> way of reconstructing what he calls "the secret
> history of the 60's."
4178


From: samfilms2003
Date: Sat Nov 15, 2003 5:10pm
Subject: Re: Godard
 
Every complaint I've heard about "Eloge de L'Amour" echoes previous complaints
about Godard having "lost it" --

i.e. he lost it, wasn't up to his standards with La Chinoise, Weekend, Sauve qui Peut,
etc etc.

Maybe it's been downhill since Alphaville (I've heard that one) or, why not,
Breathless....

I mean guess what, he's not gonna do Pierrot and Vivre Sa Vie the rest of his life :)

If it doesn't annoy his fans, it's not really Godard :)

Oh, well I like the second half of For Ever Mozart as well as anything he's done,
even JLG himself prob wouldn't agree -- nonetheless, whatever one thinks of Eloge
De L'Amour, watching it I couldn't help but think of "he plays the cinema like Bach
must have played the organ"

So either it's a fugue or I watched it in one :)

-Sam
4179


From: samfilms2003
Date: Sat Nov 15, 2003 5:15pm
Subject: Re: A list is a list...
 
Before I go out for, you know, air and sunshine ! I want to put Tran Anh Hung on
the "List" .....

-Sam
4180


From: Zach Campbell
Date: Sat Nov 15, 2003 5:43pm
Subject: NYC: Jewish Museum; non-NYC: assorted topics
 
Who knew about this? Have I just been in the dark about the Jewish
Museum, are the facilities just worth disregarding, or is this place
one of New York's best kept secrets? They're most recent program:
the Straubs' MOSES UND ARON and INTRODUCTION TO ARNOLD SCHOENBERG'S
ACCOMPANIMENT TO A FILM SCENE both in 16mm. With Klawans introducing
and discussing same. I could have been there Thursday night! Dammit!

Great alternative lists of filmmakers, everyone, I stumbled across
several names I didn't know and have jotted down to look out for.
The Guardian list is kind of boring, but the number of bad filmmakers
on it strikes me as endearingly low for this type of thing. I mean,
Malick and Kiarostami in the top ten? You can forgive a lot for that.

I could second a lot of the names mentioned, but I'd also like to add
a few (maybe more minor) names to the collective discussion ...
Djamshed Usmonov, whose excellent ANGEL ON THE RIGHT I caught the
other day; Steven Shainberg, whose SECRETARY grew on me more than any
film in quite a while (haven't seen anything else, so maybe it's a
fluke); Bonnie Hunt, who successfully channeled a little Borzage in
the charming RETURN TO ME; James Fotopoulos; Michael Almereyda, who
surprisingly wasn't mentioned before (Jaime where were you bud)
unless I missed it.

--Zach
4181


From: Dan Sallitt
Date: Sat Nov 15, 2003 5:49pm
Subject: Re: NYC: Jewish Museum; non-NYC: assorted topics
 
> Djamshed Usmonov, whose excellent ANGEL ON THE RIGHT I caught the
> other day

Yeah, this guy is good. His earlier FLIGHT OF THE BEE is even better,
to my mind, and seems to be set in the same universe as ANGEL ON THE RIGHT.

> Steven Shainberg, whose SECRETARY grew on me more than any
> film in quite a while (haven't seen anything else, so maybe it's a
> fluke)

I wound up liking the film myself, but I'm betting on fluke. In some
ways it struck me as frighteningly bad, but then the guy found the
emotional throughline and developed it nicely.

> Michael Almereyda, who
> surprisingly wasn't mentioned before (Jaime where were you bud)
> unless I missed it.

He's definitely one of America's most interesting directors right now. - Dan
4182


From: Zach Campbell
Date: Sat Nov 15, 2003 5:59pm
Subject: Re: NYC: Jewish Museum; non-NYC: assorted topics
 
Dan:
> Yeah, this guy is good. His earlier FLIGHT OF THE BEE is even
> better, to my mind, and seems to be set in the same universe as
> ANGEL ON THE RIGHT.

Where did you see it? Was it in the Central Asian series?

> I wound up liking [SECRETARY] myself, but I'm betting on fluke. In
> some ways it struck me as frighteningly bad, but then the guy found
> the emotional throughline and developed it nicely.

That's too bad if it's a fluke. It's not very often when I start out
disliking a film a lot and, by the end, find myself admiring it very
much--and having that admiration grow after the film is over. I
think it's partly the result of Shainberg making this self-contained
universe that, naturally, isn't going to appeal to everyone: the
skill of his execution helps to bring a distanced viewer over. It's
not the sort of film that makes sense on anyone's terms but its own,
and I think a masochistic sympathy in the viewer is a good way to
understand what is exactly going on. I wonder if people who disliked
the film for being pro-sadist and/or anti-feminist missed the point
entirely.

--Zach
4183


From:
Date: Sat Nov 15, 2003 6:03pm
Subject: Re: Re: Welles & IVAN THE TERRIBLE
 
hundreds of posts seem to have passed since this one and no way i'll keep up but

D Ehrenstein said:
"I find it all too easy to understand. Look at the
camera angles of middle-period Welles, particularly
"Mr.Arkadin" and "Touch of Evil" -- pure Eisenstein."

I wasn't saying I doubted the influence of Eisenstein on Welles (especially Othello), just wasn't sure in what sense "populist" was being used in re: Ivan and how this wd've prompted resentment on OW's part
4184


From: Dan Sallitt
Date: Sat Nov 15, 2003 6:09pm
Subject: Usmonov, SECRETARY
 
>>Yeah, this guy is good. His earlier FLIGHT OF THE BEE is even
>>better, to my mind, and seems to be set in the same universe as
>>ANGEL ON THE RIGHT.
>
> Where did you see it? Was it in the Central Asian series?

Yeah.

> That's too bad if it's a fluke. It's not very often when I start out
> disliking a film a lot and, by the end, find myself admiring it very
> much--and having that admiration grow after the film is over.

I had a similar experience, except that I started out disliking the film
so intensely that my bad feelings cast a shadow to this day over my
eventual affection. And my dislike wasn't about the subject matter: it
was more like, "This guy needs a bit of rudimentary craft and judgment
before going any further with his career."

Interestingly, I talked to a number of people who thought the film
copped out by turning a sex story into a love story. I felt the
opposite: the sex story couldn't ground the film, but the love story
managed to. When I think back on the film, what I remember is that
happy-sad stasis of the drawn-out ending, rather than the action. - Dan
4185


From:
Date: Sat Nov 15, 2003 6:09pm
Subject: Re: Welles fragments?
 
"Well, Brakhage, Anger, etc. aren't making "fragments." Even though much of
their work is quite short, the films are complete and whole artistic
creations, not fragments of unfinished films (with the exception of Anger's
Puce Moment, which is a fragment)"

This year's Views from the Avant-Garde showed an unfinished Brakhage piece called "Stan's Window", which would count as a fragment, I suppose. And very beautiful it was, though I'm told it's being withdrawn from circulation.

Likewise, a number of Jack Smith's films don't exist in any definitive shape and could be regarded as fragments.

I don't really see the Welles/Anger comparison yet, but I do think a Welles/Smith combo strikes some interesting sparks.

Brent
4186


From: joe_mcelhaney
Date: Sat Nov 15, 2003 6:12pm
Subject: Re: Welles in the classroom, the fragments
 
--- In a_film_by@yahoogroups.com, "hotlove666"
wrote:

> It would be interesting to think through sometime why the other
> Welles films are so painful - apart from painful personal
> associations I have admitted having with the oeuvre. Whatever he
> said, I'm not sure Welles really set out to be an entertainer, and
> the reason for that may be something that is, in my opinion, at the
> heart of his cinema: a distrust of the medium itself.
>
> But all of Welles' films are made against the audience. Who
deserved it, and do today more than ever!

My thanks to Bill for the insight into the notion of Welles making
films which, whatever Welles's stated intentions might have been,
work AGAINST the audience in some way. Most of my students want to
be flmmakers rather than academics and the mythology of Welles as a
brilliant cineaste is very powerful for them. They want to like the
films and to understand them but, apart from KANE, the films often
end up being more demanding than they had imagined. To repeat what I
said earlier, many of them do eventually come around after making
serious effort -- so there's hope for the future of cinema!

I wonder to what extent, though, the confusion that Welles's films
create (apart from the world of cinephiles and auteurists) is bound
up with how the films sometimes give the appearance of being crowd
pleasers (all that formal razzle dazzle, all that brilliant
showmanship)before Welles comes in for the kill, challenging the
audience formally and emotionally in ways which they had not
anticipated. There is always this profound ambivalence which Welles
has towards his audience.

I remember seeing Welles on Merv Griffin's show in the 1970s and he
was plugging some crappy TV thing he was doing about Nero Wolfe. He
was utterly charming with the audience, talking directly out to them,
winning them over, seducing them. But as he began talking about his
great love for the Nero Wolfe character, it was obvious that most of
the audience hadn't the slightest idea who Nero Wolfe was. Welles
abruptly turned on the audience and for the remainder of the show
repeatedly expressed his contempt for them, which made for a rather
tense atmosphere. Welles was followed on the show by Charo (who
else?) who made a reference to something or other, which the audience
also didn't know. Welles told her, "Never mind, my dear. Don't
bother yourself with this audience. They've never even heard of
Senor Nero Wolfe." I know this is just a minor anecdote but in a
small way it reveals something of his attitudes towards the
audience.

Would FOUNTAIN OF YOUTH qualify as one of the most straightfowardly
pleasurable Welles films? I only saw it once but thought it was close
to being an utter delight from beginning to end. And does anyone know
if the rights problems with it have ever been cleared up?

One final downer in terms of Welles and auteurist taste: In an
interview with Gore Vidal in the 1970s, he said that Welles told him
once (I'm quoting from memory), "You know the French ruin
everything. They say to me, 'Mr. Welles, I think you are one of the
three greatest directors of the cinema.' I nod, I nod. 'There's D.W.
Griffith. There's Orson Welles...And there's Nicholas Ray.' It's
always that third one that kills you."
4187


From: hotlove666
Date: Sat Nov 15, 2003 6:12pm
Subject: Re: a list is a list
 
For the sake of convenience I've taken Felipe's list, which is
closest to mine, and amended it. This is a very inclusive list,
ranging from Pantheon to Expressive Esoterica. Put simply, these are
the names I scan the "Now Playing" columns and the video racks for,
when I can remember them. The fact that no matter how many times I
circled back to them, I couldn't type in certain names tells me I a)
mean it and b) was being scrupulously honest, as if I were going to
meet my Maker after pressing Send. I have been lenient in some places
with the "active" idea, which I find ageist and classist: where
there's life, there's hope. And I don't feel I need to see three
films by someone to know they're good - some people don't get to MAKE
three films! There are certainly some accidental ommissions. Not in
order of preference:

Jerry Lewis
David Lynch
James Mangold
Claire Denis
Darren Aronofsky
William Friedkin
The African documentarian who made the films about recyclers
John McTiernan
Alex Cox
William Graham
Martin Brest
Pedro Almodovar
Raul Ruiz
Michael Snow
John Waters
Ying Wong Ho
Michael Cimino
Guillermo del Toro
Nagisa Oshima
Woody Allen
Pascal Bonitzer
Roman Polanski
Arturo Ripstein
Paul Thomas Anderson
Arnaud Depleschin
Ruy Guerra
George Lucas
Bill Murray
Sylvester Stallone
David Cronenberg
Kenneth Anger
Barbara Frank
The author of Platform
Sofia Coppola
Gus Van Sant
Andrew Repasky MacIlhenney
Jim McBride
The author of Trailer Park
Peter Bogdanovich
Andre Techine
Jacques Rivette
Jean-Luc Godard
Ed Stabile
Paul Mazursky
Sean Penn
Oliver Stone
Greg Ford
Brian de Palma
M. Night Shyamalan
Albert Brooks
Jonathan Demme
Freddie Francis
The author of Donnie Darko
Rob Reiner
Samo Hung
David O. Russell
Terry Gilliam
John Landis
Paul Newman
Matthew Bright
John McNaughton
Leos Carax
Barbet Schroeder
Ang Lee
Alexander Payne
Baz Lurhman
Steve Spielberg
Dan Sallitt
Guy Maddin
Kelly Green
Alex Proyas
Larry Clark
David Fincher
Mimo Calopresto
The author of On the Edge of Time: Male Domains in the Caucasus
The Coens
Dan O'Bannon
Jerzy Skolimowski
The author of Small Time (aka Three Men and a Job)
Steven Soderbergh
Fred Walton
Michelangelo Antonioni
James L. Brooks
Mike Leigh
P. J. Pesce
Todd Haynes
Terence Davies
The author of O Fantasma
Carola Spadoni
The author of My Country (Austrian)
The author of Noite
George Romero
James Cameron
Eric Rohmer
Larry Fessenden
Jean-Francois Stevenin
Jean-Marie Straub/Danielle Hulliet
Quentin Tarantino
Diane Keaton
Patrice Chereau
Lars Von Trier
The author of Nowhere to Run (Korean)
Hiroaki Yoshida
Hans-Jurgen Sybergerg
Abbas Kiarostami
Kiyoshi Kurosawa
Hou Hsio-Housein
Alain Resnais
Wong Kar-Wai
Fruit Chan
Rogerio Sganzerla
Clint Eastwood
Abel Ferrara
Tommy O'Haver
Shohei Imamura
Joe Dante
The author of La Cucaracha
John Carpenter
Charles Burnett
Tim Burton
Spike Lee
Monte Hellman
Ingmar Bergman
Orson Welles
4188


From: hotlove666
Date: Sat Nov 15, 2003 6:27pm
Subject: Re: A list is a list
 
Already with the regrets and omissions!

Ken Kwapis
Jean-Pierre Limosin
Lucas Belvaux
Werner Schroeter

Look, Secretary may be the start of a worthwhile oeuvre, but the
Maggie Gyllenhall factor could be clouding everyone's vision.
4189


From: David Ehrenstein
Date: Sat Nov 15, 2003 6:27pm
Subject: Re: Re: a list is a list
 
From
--- hotlove666 's

list I'll take

> Jerry Lewis (hardly working)
> Raul Ruiz
> Michael Snow
> John Waters
> Nagisa Oshima (near death)
> Roman Polanski
> David Cronenberg
> Kenneth Anger
> Sofia Coppola
> Gus Van Sant
> Jim McBride
> Andre Techine
> Jacques Rivette
> Jean-Luc Godard
> Paul Mazursky
> Albert Brooks
> David O. Russell
> Terry Gilliam
> Leos Carax
> Barbet Schroeder
> Alexander Payne
> Steve Spielberg
> Jerzy Skolimowski
> Michelangelo Antonioni (also hardly working)
> Todd Haynes
> Terence Davies
> Jean-Francois Stevenin
> Jean-Marie Straub/Danielle Hulliet
> Patrice Chereau
> Hans-Jurgen Sybergerg
> Abbas Kiarostami
> Alain Resnais
> Wong Kar-Wai
> Clint Eastwood
> Abel Ferrara
> Shohei Imamura
> Joe Dante

plus
Jacques Rozier
Jacques Nollot
Werner Schroeter
Mike Hodges
Peter Watkins



>
>
>


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4190


From: hotlove666
Date: Sat Nov 15, 2003 6:31pm
Subject: Re: A list is a list
 
Actually, Antonioni has a new short in the can. If it's as good as
the non-Malkovich parts of Beyond the Clouds....
4191


From: Robert Keser
Date: Sat Nov 15, 2003 6:35pm
Subject: Re: a list is a list
 
What about Daniel Schmid? There was a fairly hefty
retrospective of his films in Chicago a year or so ago,
but I was out of town and missed very single one of them.
They certainly sounded interesting. Did I miss something
significant?

--Robert Keser

--- In a_film_by@yahoogroups.com, David Ehrenstein
wrote:
> From
> --- hotlove666 's

> Jacques Rozier
> Jacques Nollot
> Werner Schroeter
> Mike Hodges
> Peter Watkins
4192


From: hotlove666
Date: Sat Nov 15, 2003 6:38pm
Subject: Re: Welles in the classroom
 
Joe, you've got some great stories!

Yes, Fountain of Youth is fun...until the last 10 minutes or so, when
everything slows down, and age and death rear their heads. But it's
only 30 minutes long, and quite bracing overall - it doesn't make me
suicidal. The rights problems will never be resolved. And if they
are, Beatrice will sue Paramount before they can put it out!

You know, it's not just the endings. Touch of Evil is theoretically
an E-ticket ride, but there's something that comes oozing out of
every frame that....
4193


From: Dan Sallitt
Date: Sat Nov 15, 2003 6:42pm
Subject: Re: Re: a list is a list
 
> Alex Cox

I really think this guy has proven himself. I wasn't sure about him
after REPO MAN and SID AND NANCY, but HIGHWAY PATROLMAN and THREE
BUSINESSMEN did the trick. Wish he could make more films, or that we
could see the ones he does make.

> Ying Wong Ho
> Ed Stabile
> Kelly Green
> P. J. Pesce
> Carola Spadoni
> Hiroaki Yoshida
> Tommy O'Haver

Who are these? Or, rather, what are their key films?

> Barbara Frank

In what condition is Barbara's presumably still-unfinished work? Are
there video tapes? Or just a workprint in a vault somewhere?

> Jim McBride

I so wish he had managed to stay afloat as a director. He's the sort of
guy who could have gone underground in Hollywood, working on
commissioned projects and turning every other one into a fine film.

> Dan Sallitt

Whoa.

> Dan O'Bannon

Where are you, Dan O'Bannon? RETURN OF THE LIVING DEAD shows that this
guy could have been one of the greats. He did one film after that,
which wasn't as good, I didn't think.

- Dan
4194


From: Dan Sallitt
Date: Sat Nov 15, 2003 6:46pm
Subject: Re: Re: a list is a list
 
> Jacques Rozier

I've only seen ADIEU PHILIPPINE, which I liked. How many have you
caught up with?

> Mike Hodges

I'm not sure where Hodges is headed at the moment, but I do think he was
one of the really strong directors of the 70s. CROUPIER and I'LL SLEEP
WHEN I'M DEAD didn't quite have the old intensity, to my mind. - Dan
4195


From: David Ehrenstein
Date: Sat Nov 15, 2003 7:07pm
Subject: Re: Re: a list is a list
 
--- Robert Keser wrote:
> What about Daniel Schmid?

He's OK. Never quite knocked me out, thiough he came
close with "Hecate."

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4196


From: David Ehrenstein
Date: Sat Nov 15, 2003 7:10pm
Subject: Re: Re: a list is a list
 
--- Dan Sallitt wrote:
> > Jacques Rozier
>
> I've only seen ADIEU PHILIPPINE, which I liked. How
> many have you
> caught up with?

"Maine Ocean" is amazing.

There are two short Rozier documentaries on the
"Contempt" DVD.

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4197


From:   J. Mabe
Date: Sat Nov 15, 2003 7:22pm
Subject: Re: Re: a list is a list
 
I don't think I've seen any of these folks yet:

John Sayles
Chris Munch
Travis Wilkerson
Jose Luis Rodreigez
Mark Moskowitz
Apichatpong Weerasethakul
J. Leighton Pierce
Todd Louiso
Julie Murray
Jem Cohen
Lewis Khlar
Henry Bean
Laurent Cantet
Ross MacElwee
Fabrizio Lazzaretti/Alberto Vendemmiati
Nicole Holfocener
Kwon-taek Im
Osuseme Sembene
Shinji Aoyama
Tom Green
John Carpenter
Moshen Mahkmalbaf
Louis CK
Henry Selick
Michele Smith


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4198


From: hotlove666
Date: Sat Nov 15, 2003 7:36pm
Subject: Re: A list is a list
 
Replying to Dan:

> Alex Cox

I really think this guy has proven himself. I wasn't sure about him
after REPO MAN and SID AND NANCY, but HIGHWAY PATROLMAN and THREE
BUSINESSMEN did the trick. Wish he could make more films, or that we
could see the ones he does make.

I think WALKER is hilarious.

> Ying Wong Ho
Xenolith - a first film that took 7 years to finish. Two boys whose
mom went to San Francisco to try her luck as a singer, leaving them
to spend the summer with their dad, a drunken security guard. No
follow-up yet. Shot in HK in Mandarin, but she's based here -
financed it by her work at a lab. Total indie. But she wants to be
David Lean.

> Ed Stabile
Plainsong - still in progress. He and Tia have to fix a few things.
Made about 20 years ago, this is the only four-star film in Maltin
that has never been released in any format. A western about three
mail order brides who go west. Ravishing.

> Kelly Green
Attack of the Bat Monsters. A film a clef about the making of a low-
budget film by Roger Corman. Kelly's in Austin, doing commercials and
industrials etc. Joe Dante told me about this one when he saw it at
Dances with Films.

> P. J. Pesce
Only wants to do westerns: The Desperate Trail (TNT), From Dusk Till
Dawn 3: The Hangman's Daughter. Started with Corman. Cameron protege.

> Carola Spadoni
Giravolta (sp?), a first feature by a filmmaker who's in between Soho
and Rome, doing installations, street festivals etc. It's a tryptich:
starts with 1. a table of homeless bums eating and drinking and
gabbing down by the Tiber as the camera circles them very fast,
intercut with a young kid who tries to drown himself and the reaction
of his two girl friends when he's pulled out. 2. A flea market where
the girls have a stand selling comics - many different characters
shot documentary-style: globalization hits the Street. 3. A bar where
some of the characters from 1. gab; a young neighborhood guy with an
instrument comes in and gets razzed; two scuzzy New Yorkers (the girl
is played by DeNiro's daughter) come in after getting burned in a
dope deal, and her purse gets lifted by an older woman who hangs out
there. It's all held together by the figure of a neighborhood
character played by a now-deceased radical performance artist, whose
character is running for Mayor of Rome, and by bursts of a radical
pirate radio station that Carola actually ran at one point. > Hiroaki
Yoshida

Wrong Yoshida. I meant Yoshishige Yoshida, the Japanese New Wave
giant (Eros+Massacre, Coup d'Etat), who recently did a comeback film.

> Tommy O'Haver
Billy's Hollywood Screen Kiss, Get Over It - both rentable. Sirk and
Godard lover who does very stylized stuff. Has yet to have a real
shot - Billy's was muy cheap, and Get Over It was a teen flick. But
they work.


> Barbara Frank

In what condition is Barbara's presumably still-unfinished work? Are
there video tapes? Or just a workprint in a vault somewhere?

She just needs to get the blue of the sky right at the beginning -
otherwise it's done. No tape, only 35mm.

> Jim McBride

I so wish he had managed to stay afloat as a director. He's the sort
of
guy who could have gone underground in Hollywood, working on
commissioned projects and turning every other one into a fine film.

He's teaching and prepping David Holzman 2, an indie. Blood Ties was
a good tip - thanks!

> Dan Sallitt

Whoa.

Honeymoon is one of the most subversive films of all time. And the
new one is pure pleasure.

Which reminds me: the author of Better Living through Circuitry and
Cleopatra's Second Husband, both rentable, and the author of Dream
with the Fishes and Cherish. And we'd both run to see anything neew
by Stanton Kaye, right?

> Dan O'Bannon

Where are you, Dan O'Bannon? RETURN OF THE LIVING DEAD shows that this
guy could have been one of the greats. He did one film after that,
which wasn't as good, I didn't think.

The Resurrected? Not nearly. But I watch Return of the Living Dead
about once every six months. "You mean the film lied?"
4199


From: hotlove666
Date: Sat Nov 15, 2003 7:39pm
Subject: Re: A list is a list
 
To J. Mabe:

Carpenter and Sembene (one foot in the grave) are well worth a look.
I don't know many of the others myself.
4200


From: Henrik Sylow
Date: Sat Nov 15, 2003 8:45pm
Subject: a list is a what?
 
The list of the Guardian is bad, but holy shit, it seems good next to
the list you guys are about to make.

To me its not a list of the best directors in the world, but a list of
the most obscure ones, a list of directors no one but festival
completists have seen.

Is being cinephile suddenly a contest of whom have seen most obscure
films by people like Ed Stabile, The guy who made "Donnie Darko" or
The guy who made "Trailer Park". If he is so good, why dont you
remember his name?

Twenty years ago, any "best director" list had Luc Besson and
Jean-Jacques Beineix on them. Films like "Le Dernier Combat", "Le
Grand Bleu", "Diva" and "Betty Blue" were on any filmstudents lips and
they were praised as the best in european cinema, in world cinema.

By any comparison, they are far better directors than "the guy who
made Donnie Darko", but I dont se their names on any list.

We need rules. Without rules, there is no way we ever will find the
best directors. Do they have a personal cinematic language? Can they
direct an actor? How do they tell their stories?

Consider Dardennes, Tarr and Sokurov. There is no doubt they are great
directors, they are unique. But do we really equal them with "The guy
who made that film with the cool piano music"?

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