The Last Film Seen

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Re: The Last Film Seen

Postby wpqx » Fri Jul 15, 2005 3:57 am

In Old Arizona (1929) - Raoul Walsh & Irving Cummings

Well can't say the expectations were very high for this film, so it didn't really disappoint. The film is more notorious for the backstory that cost Raoul Walsh his eye, as well as the role of Sgt. Mickey Dunn. In fact the film effectively ended Walsh's acting career, so much so that many filmgoers have no idea that he actually was a leading man. The role of Dunn wouldn't have been much different from Walsh's role in the earlier Sadie Thompson, that of a womanizing military man. Ironically in both films the female lead appeared to be the only salvagable female in the area.

That female is the awkward looking and bad acting Dorothy Burgess. Not surprising her acting career didn't amount to much afterwards. Her bad accent was enough to put me off on her performance. Plus perhaps I can owe it to a change in standards of beauty, but I couldn't see this woman as a tantalizing femme fatale, but as I mentioned before she's basically the only game in town. So if we look at the situation like that, think of how many girls you've met who initially weren't that attractive, but as time went on became finer and finer just because there weren't any others around. Still that wouldn't explain the fact that the newcommers in town still fall for her, but they're military men, there standards are obviously lower.

Warner Baxter won an Oscar for his work as the Cisco Kid, and Jesus Christ he didn't deserve it. Granted few of the other nominees are even known today, and honest enough I haven't seen any of them. Baxter's accent is so poor I couldn't tell if he was supposed to be Mexican, Italian, or Portugese. I also don't think either lead had enough charisma to effectively pull off this role, both leads were too old and too fat and too ugly to be believable. The Cisco Kid shouldn't be a middle aged man, but what do I know.

So the casting sucked, the acting sucked, the pacing sucked, and the structure sucked. What was good? The anti-feminist attitude. Old Hollywood films have an enormous potential to be politically incorrect, and this one certainly fits the bill. In addition to the ethnic stereotypes, there is also a decidedly anti-feminist sentiment. The female is a pure gold digger, and don't mind me giving anything away the criminal, who doubles as a hero, gets away, far cry from the "sinners get punished" filmmaking of the Hayes office. That alone made the film ineteresting. I know I've given the picture way too much attention, considering it was a very forgettable film.

Re: The Last Film Seen

Postby wpqx » Sat Jul 16, 2005 11:48 pm

Blackboards (2000) - Samira Makhmalbaf

Well the first film from Samira that I've seen, and I wasn't sure I really enjoyed it. Perhaps I'm getting sick of every Iranian film being so intentionally depressing. Perhaps someone can offer a little more insight into what makes this film so special. I'm yet to see The Apple, so I'll hold off making any generalizations on Samira Makhmalbaf until then.

Re: The Last Film Seen

Postby trevor826 » Sun Jul 17, 2005 6:43 am

If "The Apple" is your last hope, you might as well give up now, real story, actual people involved playing themselves, yes it does have a point to make but it's not likely to change your opinion.

I'd suggest watching "Joy of Madness" an unabashedly honest look at Samira at work by her sister Hana.

Cheers Trev.

Re: The Last Film Seen

Postby wpqx » Sun Jul 17, 2005 11:33 pm

Forty Guns (1957) - Samuel Fuller

This looks to me a bit like Fuller's variation on Johnny Guitar, although this one is missing most of the excitement. Guns is shot well, but it gets to be a little too much of a meat sandwich, and a few too many characters. It lost me somewhat into it, so I just followed the technical aspects of it, which remained interesting.

Re: The Last Film Seen

Postby wpqx » Thu Jul 28, 2005 6:22 am

Ken Burns' Civil War (1990)

Took me long enough to watch this, in both senses of the term. It maintained my interest, and was very well done. Having just studied the Civil War, most of it was pretty familiar, including some of the anecdotes revealed. Look forward to seeing Burns' other documentaries some day, but who knows when.

Re: The Last Film Seen

Postby wpqx » Sat Jul 30, 2005 10:06 pm

Well the Life Aquatic was the last film, although I began watching Errol Morris' First Person which isn't a film.

As for Anderson's film it was enjoyable, and certainly fits in with his previous efforts, but I don't think it quite measures up to them.

Re: The Last Film Seen

Postby wpqx » Tue Aug 02, 2005 4:14 am

Watched Ulysses Gaze finally. Absolutely fantastic film, confused the hell out of me, but lots of Angelopoulus films do. Seemed to have the most in common with The Travelling Players. Very highly recommended.

Re: The Last Film Seen

Postby A » Tue Aug 02, 2005 3:09 pm

Phu, glad you liked it.

Re: The Last Film Seen

Postby kookook » Thu Aug 04, 2005 2:07 pm

However im slightly confused with the ending. What happened there? One minute shes in the car, then i think she has a flashback, then shes back in the cave and if i remember right her daughters there with a cake (what is it with that cake. they showed it a couple of times in the film) and then her daughter wasnt there as the camera panned out.

What is the deal with the ending then? Anybody able to elaborate on this?

Re: The Last Film Seen

Postby trevor826 » Thu Aug 04, 2005 2:39 pm

If I didn't know better I'd think you were talking about the end of Brit flick "Descent."

Or are you?

If you are then to understand the ending you would need to go right back to the start, as I said the film has several layers and several interpretations, as far as I'm concerned the film switches mode when she wakes up in hospital after the accident, from then on you need to clarify fantasy from reality.

Cheers Trev


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