Monday, December 8, 2008

Journal Entry #5

The Week of Friday October 17th

10.14.2008
THEY DONT SHOOT HORSES DO THEY (1969) 150 Word Review
Directed by: Sidney Pollack

REVIEW
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.

10.17.2008
THE MANCHURIAN CANDIDATE (1962) In Class Clip
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

10.17.2008
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!

10.17.2008
A WOMAN UNDER THE INFLUENCE (1974) In Class Clip
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'

10.17.2008
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

10.17.2008
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.

10.17.2008
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...

BREAK

1 comment:

Anna said...

Afraid that's not true about Wiseman wanting to limit the audience for TITICUT FOLLIES to schools. The film was actually banned by the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, who did allow an exemption for screenings for certain educators and professionals in the field. Wiseman tried to get the ban overturned and was not successful until 1991, when it was immediately shown on PBS to a wide audience.