Monday, August 30, 2010

Saturday, August 21, 2010


Anna Karina

The Lens of Leo Fuchs

Jack Lemmon and Harold Lloyd

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Monday, August 16, 2010

Monday, August 09, 2010

My Week of Movie Watching

Hush…Hush, Sweet Charlotte – The thing I love about Robert Aldrich’s great southern Gothic nightmare is the way it doesn’t hurry. We are well into the film by the time it finally starts laying its cards on the table. The performances by the three principals – Bette Davis, Olivia de Havilland, and Joseph Cotton are all excellent, but Agnes Moorehead also deserves her props for one of the really great scenery-chewing roles ever, as Davis’ housekeeper. A minor quibble – de Havillands exposition speech at the end detracted from things a bit for me, because I knew it was for me. Still, recommended.

Bonjour Tristesse – Otto Preminger number from 1958 about an irresponsible playboy (David Niven), his carefree daughter (Jean Seberg), and the mature woman who disrupts their lives, with tragic consequences (Deborah Kerr). This is supposed to be a statement on the shallow, frivolous lives of the idle rich, but a good deal of it is pretty flat and uninspired. I never really felt like I was watching real people. There is stuff to like here – There is some amazing location photography in the French Riviera, and Seberg is sexy as hell, playing younger than her actual 20 years. A marginal recommendation.

Nada – Claude Chabrol made this jet-black satire on revolutionary politics in 1974, and truth be told, it’s not his best work. It involves a small band of Marxists and their plot to kidnap an American politician. Chabrol gets the kidnapping out of the way fairly quickly, and then gets down to his real agenda, which is the endgame between the various forces on the side of the law, who all want their own results from the crisis. The government is not completely opposed to the idea of the politician being killed, because that would allow them to come down hard on the country’s leftists. It’s an interesting idea, but is so sour that it eventually stretches the limits of credulity.