Thursday, December 11, 2008


I set out to make this a blog about The act of keeping a journal but quickly found out that it was more about trying to just keep up with the fact that it WAS the journal. I usually have a dreamers quality about these kinds of things and I wish I could have bounced it around a little and gotten other peoples comments and ideas and theories on the different movies that we watched and all of the cerebral discussion we had in that big Cathedral up on Van Ness. That was not to be. What follows is basically the Journal I kept in class with a little bit of added spice.
The Journal entries begin with the first entry at the bottom of this page and continue in chronological order all the way up to the current day.
Finally I'd just like to say that in my first semester at The Academy of Art this class has single handedly shattered my firm belief that I want to be a Photographer. The more I talk and watch and think about film the more I begin to enjoy it and be inspired by it. When I go into a theater and watch a movie it's a magical thing and most always I walk out the door feeling inspired or moved in one way or another. That's basically the way I felt going to this class on Friday afternoons and sitting down to watch and talk about films. It's still hard to believe that this is a class and not something I would just do on a Friday afternoon.
Anyway hope the Journal meets the standards required and thanks for the class.

Cassady Kissam

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Journal Entry #11

The Week of Friday December 5th

DO THE RIGHT THING (1989) 150 Word Review
Directed by: Spike Lee

What's so interesting to me about Do The Right Thing is that in 1989 I was just graduating 8th grade and about to enter High School and I remember that the big thing then was Air Jordans and the Spike Lee NIKE commercials featuring Spike Lee as MARS BLACKMON. It's funny to watch the movie again and see that compared to the Commercial element of the times. I love Spike Lee, I love him as a person who has learned to rebel a little bit within Hollywood. I loved his Doc. on Katrina "When The Levees Broke" But I think this makes you realize that everyone "sells" out a little bit, in one way or another. That being said Do The Right Thing can be summed up best by the scene where all the different ethnic groups in NY are going around giving you a soundbite of all the deragutory terms that they use for other races (which they dont like) That's the movie really. Just in the same way that CRASH is about the same type of thing in LA. I mean if you thought Woody Allen was NY then Spike Lee is a "cooler" NY. This film builds and builds and builds until it spills over. And it's a great slice of that period which I think is even more important today when everyone likes to pretend that Racism is over and gone.

VALLEY GIRL (1983) In Class Clip
Directed by: Martha Coolidge

"It's like, I'm totally not in love with you anymore. It's like totally boring"

"Not too cool, Julie"

ROCKY (1976) In Class Clip
Directed by: John Albetson
Written by: Sly Stallone

Rocky won Best Picture. Stallone wrote the next 3 Rocky films. The beauty of both Rocky and Rambo is that the originals in those series are totally credible when taken on there own. When judged indpendently of the Rocky/Rambo Hollywood machine, they are both exceptional movies when viewed singularly from the others. In Rocky it's a classic story about a Native Son making good, it's a story about making it, about working class. And Rambo is about a guy coming back from Vietnam and getting spit on.

FIRST BLOOD (1982) In Class Clip
Directed by: Ted Kotcheff

Stallone helped write this script.

"Calling me all kinds of vile crap!"

It's a gritty, credible movie. Before Rambo went on to save the world. This movie, taken alone is a great movie. It deals with a credible issue and even the end where he trys to blow up the town IS credible, that could happen. It's another really good story and it's sad that they went on and marginalized it by making Rambo a super hero. If you judge Rocky and Rambo independent of the Blockbuster Machine that followed they are solid.

ROBO COP (1987) In Class Clip
Directed by: Paul Verhoven

Comic book quality. Robot to clean up the world. A sign of the times and perhaps The Reagan Administration!

STARSHIP TROOPERS (1997) In Class Clip
Directed by: Paul Verhoven

ESCAPE FROM NEW YORK (1981) In Class Clip
Directed by: John Carpenter

In 1988 the year 1997 WAS the future.

Directed by: Steven Spielberg

Science Fiction is Alegories for real life. Forget about the Aliens' what is the movie indicitive of.

DOWN BY LAW (1986) In Class Clip
Directed by: Jim Jarmusch

Tom Waits. The New Orleans backdrop is fantastic.
Indie Film. In the mid 80's Robert Redford created SUNDANCE to show Indie Films

BLUE VELVET (1986) In Class Clip
Directed by: David Lynch

Isabella Rosallini. The under belly. Two seperate looks at a cities underbelly. One in classic Lynch style the other in a crime ridden New Orleans. One is underneath, the other out in the open

DO THE RIGHT THING (1989) In Class Clip
Directed by: Spike Lee

"Hate K.O'd by Love.."

WATCH and REVIEW: Dancer in the Dark

Journal Entry #10

The Week of Friday November 21st

THE WINGS OF DESIRE (1987) 150 Word Review
Directed by: Wim Wender


MIDNIGHT MOVIES (2005) In Class Clip
Directed by: Stuart Samuels

SUSPIRIA (1977) In Class Clip
Directed by: Degento

THE BATTLE OF ALGIERS (1966) In Class Clip
Directed by: Pontecorvo

Not a documentary but is filmed to look like one. Occupation. Terrorism. What is a Terrorist?

Directed by: Peter Weir

Reminds me in a strange way of Terrence Maliks 'Thin Red Line'
Idyllic, purposfully Idyllic. Almost like a dream or a daze like quality.

Directed by: Werner Herzog

Simplistic allegory. Explotative and attack on culture.
What's interesting about Herzog is that he always chooses subjects that are a little off. YOu spend half the movie laughing at or snickering at the dude in 'Grizzlyman' and the same goes for 'Even Dwarves..' and 'Heart of Glass' But I think he has some method behind the madness. At the end you feel a little embarassed for laughing you realize that Herzog may be pointing out the beauty in these people that perhaps they are more like you and me then we want to admit. I think he's making a social commentary but he's also making it about the audience as well. He forces you to examine what you are watching and question your own reaction.

HEART OF GLASS (1975) In Class Clip
Directed by: Werner Herzog

ALI: FEAR EATS THE SOUL (1974) In Class Clip
Directed by: Rainer Fassbinder

Influenced by Douglas Sirk

PERSONA (1967) In Class Clip
Directed by: Ingmar Bergman

There's a kind of Fight Club thing going on in the opening scene with the spliced film. Dada/Fellini morph into almost a slow Photography Angle. Waking up from the dead with the sheet over him...almost like he's in a morgue.

CRIES AND WHISPERS (1972) In Class Clip
Directed by: Ingmar Bergman

I also have EL TOPO in my notes but for some reason not in my journal. For the record EL TOPO was Directed by Alendrjo Jowdersay. Awesome movie by the way. The New Age Western.

WATCH and REVIEW: Do The Right Thing (Spike Lee)

Journal #9

The Week of Friday November 14th

ERASERHEAD (1977) 150 Word Review
Directed by: David Lynch

I think my basic opinion of this film changed a lot when it was mentioned in class that Lynch made it over a period of a couple of years and had to stop and start production due to the fact that he was making it on his own dime. That alone adds a sense of appreciation to it. Some people like David Lynch, some people don't just the same way that some people like Woody Allen and some people don't. But aside from like or dislike the "effort" to which these two directors pursues his art can't be denied. In it's essesence it's a Horror film, crossed with a Comedy crossed with an Indie film crossed with a Thriller...if thats not too confusing. But it's also groundbreaking in that it's kind of like looking at an early sketch by Picasso or the first essay that Hemmingway wrote. It's Lynch trying to work out his style and spirit. Add to that that it fits into the genre of Cult Film as well as Midnigh Movie and it doesnt matter if you don;t like Lynch, it's a credible film.

ERASERHEAD (1977) In Class Clip
Directed by: David Lynch

"Cult" Scene of character meeting girlfriends parents. You can see the seeds which are planted for Lynch's style. These are the Directors evolutionary steps played out on film for all to see.

THE BIRDS (1976) In Class Clip
Directed by: Alferd Hitchcock

This is an interesting clip and a movie I've seen a number of times. The reason being is that I grew up in Sonoma County and lived about 15 minutes from Bodega Bay, so we always used to talk about how the Church in this film is in the movie. Interesting crescendo of script writing though, with many different characters and angles.

Directed by: George Romero

It seems pretty obvious that Director Danny Boyle (28 Days Later) framed his Zombie Thriller on The Night of The Living Dead. On that note this was a great clip. Police Chief, the feel of the Deep South, the obvious Racial Tension. MLK was shot while Romero was driving the film around from theater to theater. First Midnight Movie. Also made 'Dawn of The Dead' Ving Rhymes!

THE HILLS HAVE EYES (1977) In Class Clip
Directed by: Wes Craven

No Comment. Okay I cant handle this kind of movie because it seems like it's just like Bad for The know like bad to's not like a movie like this brings to light any real problems or higher thinking or leaves you walking out of the theater going "Gosh I never knew that Radioactive Nuclear Tests caused that much damage and pain to the hillbillies of northern nevada, I feel for those deformed guy's...I think I'll start a support group tomorrow"

MS. 45 (1981) In Class Clip
Directed by: Abel Ferraro

Interesting side note that the woman who stars in this film went on to write "The Bad Lt." with Harvey Kittel and later overdosed on Heroin. Which explains a lot about that movie. Both movies feel similar, the underbelly of N.Y.

CRUISING (1980) In Class Clip
Directed by: William Frieken

Al Pacino. Time capsule of NY Queer Culture



CLASSIFIED X (1999) In Class Clip
Directed by: Melvin Van Peebles

Doc. About race in cinema. Sweet Sweetbacks Baad Assss Song

WHEN THE LEVEES BROKE (2006) Home Viewing
Directed by: Spike Lee

Powerful, powerful Doc. that I like to watch at least once a year. Do you think the people of The Gulf Coast South had anything to do with this years Election Result?

WATCH and REVIEW: The Wings of Desire

COMMENTS: It's an intersting paradigm that all films 'Exploit' to some degree or another. So in essence all film is Explotative. It seems that the trick is to exploit with some thought i.e. exploit with a purpose. Today's films seem to be exploiting to sell more crap. The good films exploit your mind and make you think AFTER you leave the theater.

Journal #8

The Week of Friday November 7th

BULLITT (1968) In Class Clip
Directed by: Peter Gates

I'll compare this chase to The French Connection chase scene below, but first a couple notes on each scene.
Starring Steve Mcqueen. What makes a good car chase. Compare camera movements/actors/spec. effects/music/City. Mcqueen is serious. Slow build up. The Rear View mirror shot, the first time he notices he's being followed, the tempo picks up, trambone, clicks his seat belt buckle (Shit is about to get wild!) Then BAM! The music stops and it's all car sounds from here on out. P.O.V. shots, rolls down the window instead of shooting it out. Theres been a lot of replicas of this car chase but it's solid,mit really is cool. In a totally different vein it reminds me of the car chase in the movie Heat with Dinero and Pacino just because it has some qualities such as Lack of sound and car noises.

Directed by: Fried

Starring Gene Hackman. First of all let me just say...awesome Hackman movie! Great opening shot and use of light. Hackmans car gets destroyed, airbags would have ruined this scene. Reflection of the subway in the window. Hackman fuck the car up. Music starts at the end, heavy ominous.


The chase in The French Connection feels grittier. It seems more realistic. More in the moment. There's talking, the people have emotions. 'Bullitt' seems removed, while 'The French Connection' seems like how a car chase might actually go down. In 'Bullitt' you feel like you are in a strile enviornment, where as in FC you feel like you are ther. The music in Bullitt is a little bit better. But in The FC you have multiple modes of transit, cars, subways it's a non linear chase that zigs and zags and seems to have no pre thought about plan to it while in Bullitt you have a feeling that it's headed in only one direction. The Anti Hero in 1971 Gene Hackman makes The Hero in 1968 seem cheesy. The times they are a changing.

MASH (1969) In Class Clip
Directed by: Robert Aldman

MASH the tv show created the rules for tv shows. Innovative soundtrack, improv. Multiple conversations being recorded at one time.

THE CANDIDATE (1972) In Class Clip
Directed by: Micheal Ritchie

Robert Redford plays.

ROSEMARY'S BABY (1968) In Class Clip
Directed by: Roman Polanski

John Casevettes acted in this and then took the money to make his own films

MEAN STREETS (1975) In Class Clip
Directed by: Martin Scorsese

TAXI DRIVER (1976) In Class Clip
Directed by: Martin Scorsese

HEARTBREAK KID (1972) In Class Clip
Directed by: Elaine May

Watch and Review: Eraserhead

Journal Entry #7

The Week of Friday October 31st


ANNIE HALL (1977) In Class Viewing/150 Word Review
Directed by: Woody Allen


Annie Hall is your proverbial, classic Woody Allen film and like one of the last lines of the film ("your like N.Y. city, an island unto yourself") it is a movie unto itself. I think that line in it's simplicity says a lot about the film itself. It's a film chock full of double meaning, with a multi faceted spider web of thoughts and directions. One huge snow ball, avalanche, train wreck which manages to stay charming due to it's deep wit and banter. Case in point "I'm a Bigot...but for the left" or "my Grandma never gave gifts she was too busy getting raped by Cossacks"...."He said as he removed her brassiere" It's masterful.
My mother grew up in Yonkers, N.Y. The first baseball game I went to was at Yankee Stadium with my Grandfather. So when you here Woody Allen or watch a film by him, there's a certain nostaligia that wafts over you, N.Y. city in all it's crassness, in all it's aplomb comes drifting back to you. That's the beauty of this film. That's the beauty of Woody Allen.
In my opinion one of the most groundbreaking scenes in this film comes during the first "meeting" of Allen and Annie Hall when he drives her home and they sit on the rooftop and share a glass of wine. In it Allen employes his tactic of having the actors conversing with each other while the thoughts in their mind also enters the's brilliant, instead of using a tactic made famous by comic books (with the thought bubble over the characters head) Allen makes there thoughts known to all out loud as it sounds to us when we speak in real life.
Finally I think whats hard to dispute about Woody Allen is hate him or love him the man has made a movie every year for 45 years. So despite his faults you have to respect him as a director, as someone who is dedicted to his art. I think that quality above all else make him a master, really, a dedicated film maker who has poured his heart and soul into making films, into his art.

Monday, December 8, 2008

Journal Entry #6

The Week of Friday October 24th

400 BLOWS (1959) 150 Word Review
Directed by: Francois Truffaut

Can you say French New Wave? Francois Truffauts introduces us to Antoine (played by Jean Pierre Leaud) in the first installment of the 50's version of Harry Potter. Truffaut gives a universal tale of Teenage Agnst, right? Whats more interesting is to see how this film plays out in reference to the other films which involve Antoine. Now we understand why he acts the way he does around Collette! Now we can understand the earlier years which shape the character that goes on to span four films by Truffaut. Despite all of that 400 BLOWS does come across as a little melodramatic. But for me it brings up the degree to which an actor can change a character. Or at least change him in a way that may be different then what was intended by the writer and or director. the same can be said of Harry Potter as can be said about that the character changing or the actor himself changing, or both at the same time. At any rate I thought that based on Antoine and Collette this was an example of Truffaut trying to find some sort of style in regards to the character Antoine. that being said it's a huge undertaking and perhaps what is so remarkable is that it seems that Truffaut 'knows' that there will be more movies in the series.

ANTIONE AND COLETTE (1962) In Class Clip
Directed by: Francois Truffaut

Also went on to make more movies involving this character. The 'Original' Harry Potter!

BAND OF OUTSIDERS (1964) In Class Clip
Directed by: John Luc Godard

1960's Pulp Fiction Scene going on here. Very, very cool scene. Did Tarintino Rip this off for his Diner Scene...this was awesome

A WOMAN IS A WOMAN (1961) In Class Clip
Directed by: John Luc Godard

Anna Kirina. Musical about a stripper.

BALTHAZAR (1966) In Class Clip
Directed by: Robert Bresson

Main Actor is a donkey. This is classic 'Magnum' Bresson. Almost like his photos. Does this film believe in God? Very interesting. I think that it's almost devoid...


Journal Entry #5

The Week of Friday October 17th

Directed by: Sidney Pollack

Who makes these movies. I thought that Pollacks THEY SHOOT HORSES DONT THEY came across as shoddy and chessy. The only thing that saves the film really is the fact that it has such a bizzare and cruel sub plot to it. In my opinion it's a classic case of a book being made into a movie that sucks. At the heart of the story we are talking about the Depression, we are talking about how the times and circumstances we live in effect the choices and things we are willing to do. The premise is awesome. The story is awesome. But I kept wanting to see the gritty side, the dark side of this story played out in Visual Form. Which is why I go to see a film. To see a directors interpretation of a story. If I had known that it would have looked like this I would have just read the book (Horace McCoy) In it's defense I think that it does bring up some interesting similarities with today's media culture and I do like the story that is being told. I guess I just think that it feels like Pollack is making a musical which reeks of Broadway glitz and adds to it a quality about it that makes it come across as unreal. In it's delivery it loses too much of it's cynicism and darkness.

Directed by: John Frankenhimer

Brainwashing of a political candidate. Masterful edits. Sinatra. The Garden Club. A great montage of the brainwash victims thinking they are at a Garden Club Meeting, culminating on one man killing another as ordered by his superiors. I'd say the original rivals the new version with Denzel. And what about the parrells to our own Presidential Race. This same issue could submarine McCain...and wasnt it not to long ago that Eagleton did the same thing (talked about in depth in one of Hunter S. Thompsons greatest works "Fear and Loathing on The Campaign Trail: 1972") in the election v. Nixon? Eagleton was a POW who had had Shock Treatment and was nominated to by VP in 1972

TITICUT FOLLIES (1967) In Class Clip
Directed by: Frederick Wiseman
Wiseman wanted his doc. to only be watched in schools. Didn't feel comfortable with how people would interpret it outside the 'system'. Which brings up an interesting point about manipulating your audience. All film makers manipulate the audience to one degree or another. Manipulation for a greater purpose?

I'd love to see a Doc. based on Norman Mailers book regarding the 1968 Chicago Riots!

Directed by: John Cassavetes
Considered the God Father of Indie Film. Wanted to show human nature. Amazing scene. Reminds me of the working class feel that is portrayed in 'Deer Hunter'

WHO'S AFRAID OF VIRGINA WOLF (1966) In Class Viewing
Directed by: Mike Nichols
Elizabeth Taylor/ John Burton made at least 10 films together. Aging couple who drink a lot. Type of intense acting. 'Closer' By Mike Nichols (Portman, Julia Roberts)
Scene: Who Afraid Of V. Wolf
'This whole sinking world"
"That I am" (E.Taylor)
"I stand warned"
Camera: Haskill Wexler
Directs only a couple films

*This film also helped break down the rating system and ushered in The MPAA ratings system

MEDIUM COOL (1969) In Class Viewing
Directed by: Haskill Wexler
Creates a narrative that leads up to the riots. Warren Betty helps get actor into the convention. Chicago Riots....Norman Mailer "Armies of The Night"
These riots helped disenfranchise a lot of people, I think it was a breaking point, similar to Kent State. Where you realize that your at war with your own Govt.

THE WILD BUNCH (1969) After Class Viewing
Directed by: Sam Peckinpah
Aslo: Bonnie and Clyde
Audiences were stunned by the degree of violence...extreme violence! I stayed after and watched a little of this...seems like it helped usher in some of the violence we see today...


Friday, December 5, 2008

Journal Entry #4

The Week of October 10th

I've decided to change the text and the viewing a format because it seemed like it was getting a little confusing. For the record The Blogs follow a backwards thread, that is the first day of class is at the very bottom of the page and the posts at the top of the page are the most recent. I would have liked it to be in the opposite order, but Blogspot insists on making this hard!

ROSHOMAN (1950) 150 Word Review
Directed by: Akira Kurosawa

Finally a foreign film. Well actually The Bicycle Thieves was foreign so I stand corrected. OK finally a Kurosawa film! That's better. This film was kind of like a melting pot between Pulp Fiction, Four Rooms and The 7 Samurai. There's a lot of things going on in this movie. The opening titles play out like a Japanese Film Noir...which I guess this is. From a visual standpoint it's groundbreaking. A furious rainstorm engulfs everything and then an opening shot of the two guys sitting under what looks like a destroyed pagoda...But from that portion of the film my favorite shot is the two sitting on the steps and the rain coming's a straight on shot which is brilliant. Not only that but don't all good movies start with some variation of "I went into the woods" or "He went up the mountain" The strength of this film in my opinion is that it tells a very complex story and a very simplistic way. It's crisp. Add to that a compelling soundtrack and it's awesome. Obviously Kurosawa is ahead of his time. It's hard to believe that it's a film from 1950 and has interesting influences on the film world from the day it was made to now.

The Saints are on National TV. Hard not to pass up. Im hoping my longshot bet on The saints pays off at 200-1 and I can retire a rich man. Reggie Bush is a waterbug on to watch

Directed by: Mark Orton (Dir. of Phot.)
Written/Narrated by:John Peterson

Doc. about Farmer John Peterson. Captivating

THE TINGLER (1959) In Class Viewing
Directed by: William Castle

Directed by: Don Siegal

IN A LONELY PLACE (1954) In Class Clip
Directed by: Nicolas Ray

IMITATION OF LIFE (1959) In Class Clip
Directed by: Douglas Sirk

8 1/2
Directed by: Fedrico Fellini (1963) In Class Clip

Italian Neo Realist. The concept of the Auter. The Face of Mastroianni-guy in glasses

GOOD MORNING (1960) In Class Clip
Directed by: Yasujaro Ozu

Characters talking directly into the camera. Ozu was extreme in his minimalizium. Film is poverbialy exessential

Directed by: Baz Luhrmann
Directed by: Paul Verhoeven

"Peace...Peace...I hate the word" Tibault AKA "Cha Chi"

I wrote about this in my Extra Credit Paper. Lots of fun.


Thursday, October 30, 2008

Journal Entry #3

THE BICYCLE THIEF (1948) 150 Word Review
Directed by: Vittorio De Sica
Written by: Cesar Zavatinni

In this Italian neorealist film Vittorio De Sica acts like Henri Cartier-Bresson and captures the moment using shots and angles that look like they could have been paused and taken as a snapshot and one awards as photography. That being said this is a film not a photo portrait. At it's heart I think the film is about much more than what is on the surface. The powerful relationship between Father and Son. The struggle of the working class and the poor. Compassion and struggle all bottled up into one film. More interesting still is the powerful lessons that Bruno endures. This is Post WWII Italy and yet in a way it reminds you of aspects of today or for that anytime in the last 100 years. It deals with the struggles and decisions that one makes in order to provide for the ones you love. Regardless of the superb cinamatic accomplishments featured in this film at it's heart it's really about life and I think that's why it's so endearing. Most importantly though it makes you question the world around us. Why do people steal? What drives people to do what they do and what relationships exist in your own family (between Father and child). The Bicycle Thief delivers...pure and simple.

THE BICYCLE THIEF (1948) In Class Clip
Directed by:Vittorio De Sica
Written by: Zavatinni

Zavanntini was a socialist/Marxasist. The relation between the ideal of that political belief can be seen throughout the film. Theres a certain feeling that he is reinforcing his belief of how the world relates. During this time you also have Stalin/Mussolini. Zavatinni believed that there should be no barriers between reality and wanted to make a film that explored 90 minutes of a persons life

THE THIRD MAN (1949) In Class Clip
Directed by: Carol Reed
Written by: Graham Greene

Graham Greenes ('The Ugly American') influence is thick in this film about mistaken identity. Each scene is painstakingly set up using the classic shadow elements, smoke, staircases etc.

Directed by: David Lean

UMBERTO D. (1952) In Class Viewing PART 1
Directed by: Vittorio De Sica
Written by: Zavattini

Typical De Sica with non-actors and a slllloooooowwwww story about an old man and his dog. An exercise in futility. Reminded me of last Saturday when a work crew decided to cut down a tree outside my apartment on Pine Street at 8am. I was about to yell something when the, from the window across the street I heard a neighbor yell "shut the fuck up!" at which the chainsawing stopped only to resume at 9:15a.A slow hourney into the pursuit of staying alive. The scene at the Dog Pound was significant because it reminded me of the scene in The Bicycle Thief when the father thinks his boy had drowned. The shot with the Colisiuem in the background is pure magic, with a shallow field of view and a gritty black and white quality. Also the Dog holding the hat and acting as a panhandler, as well as when he is talking to The Commish through the bus window.

REBEL WITHOUT A CAUSE (1955) 150 Word Review
Directed by:

Text to follow

Directed by: Peter Jackson

The classic Golem and Frodo Baggins.

Directed by: Martin Scorsce

UN CHIEN ANDALOU (1929) In Class Viewing PH 100 Photo History
Directed by: Lois Bunuel and Salvador Dali

A movie every film student should watch at least once. Dada/Surrealism. Also directed Diary of a Chambermaid


Moderated by Gwen Ifill. Also read a concurrent story on 'Librarians against Palin' in The SF Chronicle

UMBERTO D (1952) In Class Clip Part 2
Directed by: Vittorio De Sica

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Journal Entry #2

DOUBLE INDEMNITY (1944) 150 Word Review
Directed By: Billy Wilder

The element which is so interesting in the Film Noir DOUBLE INDEMNITY to me is the script. It's a back and forth banter which is laden with manipulation and talking questions. Fred Macmurray and Barbara Stanwyck play off each other with skill and deft touch. Another interesting aspect is the classic Film Noir plot and shooting style. Billy Wilder goes out of his way to craft scences which are complex and masterful. The clip we watched in class is a good example with Stanwyck standing at the top of the stairs, but throughout the movie there are many more of these, each one set up with painstaking detail. In short this is your proverbial Film Noir including all of the central themes of a Noir (femme fatale, lighting, contrast, plot, etc.) and it was herlded as a remarkable effort throughout Hollywood. It's a classic. As evidence of that it has been adapted, copied and has inspired many other movies.

DOUBLE INDEMNITY (1944) In Class Clip
Directed By: Billy Wilder

SUNSET BLVD. (1950) In Class Clip
Directed By: Billy Wilder
Cinematography: Haren Von Stronheim

Buster Keaton. Bringing out Hollywoods Old Guns. A Tribute to Old Cinema v. New Cinema,Change. Also went on to direct the Nine Hour Epic 'Greed'.

DETOUR (1945) In Class Viewing
Directed By: Edgar G. Ulmer

Was that a young Kurt Russell as the Lead Actor? A disjointed, strung out, low budget, chuckle fuck about a piano player trying to get back to his lady. Also the advent of the Femme Fetal

TROPIC THUNDER (2008) Sebastopol Cinemas
Directed By: Ben Stiller

Sebastopol Theater with my Girlfriend, her Mom and my buddy Johnny after a day of drinking at the Cajun Festival.

ALIENS (2008) Home Viewing
Directed By: James Cameron

One of the all time great Sci Fi movies. S.Weaver as a bad ass, female, Alien Wrecker.

Monday, October 27, 2008

Journal Entry #1

Directed By: John Heyh and Jeff Ku

A gritty, low budget Doc. on exactly that, a Rock and Roll Parking Lot. Mostly
interviews of people tailgating outside a Virgina concert venue

NOT YET RATED (2006) In Class Clip
Directed By: Kerbie Dick

Doc. examing the rating system used in today's movies industry. What words you can and cannot say