The Last Film Seen

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Re: The Last Film Seen

Postby wpqx » Wed Apr 02, 2008 1:57 pm

Macunaima (1969) - Joaquim Pedro de Andrade

Continuing my trek through Brazil is this unique and positively absurd comedy from Andrade. The print of the film was incredibly clear and far better than nearly every Brazilian film I've seen. This fits right into the over the top style of films like Xica and How Tasty Was My Little Frenchman. You know from the start when a man in drag playing a woman with his white face painted brown starts grunting and out drops a fully grown black man as a newborn infant that this film is not going to be too conventional. Our hero as he's constantly called by the narrator mysteriously winds up turning white in a magic fountain and suddenly is god's gift to women. Along the way he has a son who looks exactly like he did as a newborn baby, gets a family of giants to attempt to eat him, is invited to the strangest wedding party I've ever seen and eventually returns to his roots. The whole time he remains lazy and horny which sometimes cancels the other out. Certainly worth hunting out and it is available as an all region DVD.
wpqx
 


Re: The Last Film Seen

Postby wpqx » Wed Apr 02, 2008 5:15 pm

The Lion Has Seven Heads (1970) - Glauber Rocha

I'm beginning to wonder if I should've just started a thread for Brazilian films. This well known but little seen Rocha film is remarkable from beginning to end. So much of the film seemed familiar right from the start yet it was like nothing I'd ever seen. I wonder how heavy Godard influenced Rocha or vise versa. The film did have French and Italian funding and much of it was in French, including another bizarre Jean Pierre Leaud performance. There are direct camera addresses, long takes, iconoclastic imagery, and a naked white girl in a cage, what's not to love? Like all Rocha films I saw this in an extremely grainy version with impossible to read subtitles, but like the three previous Rocha films I've seen it didn't distract me, in some ways it almost seemed to help the film.
wpqx
 

Re: The Last Film Seen

Postby justindeimen » Wed Apr 02, 2008 5:30 pm

Consciously or not, I just realised my still ongoing Hong Kong fest has taken a turn that's either spooky or serendipitous. I had started to commit myself to watching Leslie Cheung's early crime films, kung fu, comedies and now dramas like the WKWs and Rouge, from late March till today. I was just reminded when I was reading the newspaper that he did pass away on April 1.
justindeimen
 

Re: The Last Film Seen

Postby wpqx » Wed Apr 02, 2008 6:03 pm

Bullet in the Head (1990) - John Woo

What a remarkably brilliant over the top follow up to The Killer. John Woo reportedly wanted to make this A Better Tomorrow III, but Tsui Hark took the franchise from him, but that probably works best for this film. A trio of friends are forced to leave Hong Kong and decide to make a quick buck exploiting the situation in Vietnam. What follows is almost a Hong Kong interpretation of Treasure of the Sierra Madre, at least that's what I gathered. The film is epic in scope spanning two countries, several years, and an awful lot of explosions. It's a credit to Woo how he can take us from light hearted friendly mischief to tragedy by film's end. Certainly enough to encourage me to dig deeper into genre film making. I also ran out of Brazilian films.
wpqx
 

Re: The Last Film Seen

Postby arsaib4 » Thu Apr 03, 2008 4:01 am

I think you should start a Brazilian thread, preferably in the Classics forum so Walter Salles and his mostly middlebrow fare can stay out of the picture. But really anywhere would be fine. I've seen Macunaíma but how did you get to the Rocha film?
arsaib4
 

Re: The Last Film Seen

Postby wpqx » Thu Apr 03, 2008 4:59 am

A DVD-R of what looked like a seriously downgraded 16 or 35mm film print. I'll take any Rocha I can get anyway I can get it.
wpqx
 

Re: The Last Film Seen

Postby wpqx » Thu Apr 03, 2008 5:36 pm

Merry Go Round (1955) - Zoltan Fabri

Certainly a product of its time and country this film was immensely popular in it's native Hungary and was considered a fore-runner for some of the monumental films of the new wave. Fabri had a second career as an actor and appeared in The Witness in 1968. Here however he fashions a somewhat simple tale of a young couple who seem to have everything going against their union. Their families are on opposing sides of the spectrum as the girl's family is very much resisting the move for collectivization, and the young man is one of its strongest advocates. With a few well placed camera angles and a bit of compromise our lovers do wind up with something of a happy ending. Fabri's films as a director are largely unavailable here and seems better known based on reputation rather than people actually seeing his films.
wpqx
 

Re: The Last Film Seen

Postby wpqx » Fri Apr 04, 2008 1:26 am

Touki Bouki (1973)
Avanti! (1972)

Pretty far from each other, the Wilder film was excellent and Touki was a bit puzzling in its construction to me.
wpqx
 

Re: The Last Film Seen

Postby arsaib4 » Fri Apr 04, 2008 8:49 pm

Djibril Diop Mambéty's Hyenas isn't as experimental but I like it almost as much as Touki Bouki.
arsaib4
 

Re: The Last Film Seen

Postby justindeimen » Fri Apr 04, 2008 9:53 pm

Saw these Emir Kusturica films over the past week:

Arizona Dream
Black Cat, White Cat
When Father Was Away on Business
Do You Remember Dolly Bell?
Life Is a Miracle
Underground

Unfortunately couldn't find Time of the Gypsies, which is was the one I was most looking forward to.
justindeimen
 

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