Pretend you have a ballot for the 2012 edition of Sight & Sound's top 10 movies of all time list

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reeeal good! xp

I generally don't have a problem with masters striving to make masterpieces. Trying to argue that either Godfather is top-10 when Coppola can't figure out what to do with Diane Keaton, that's a problem.

World Congress of Itch (Dr Morbius), Tuesday, 8 May 2012 05:13 (1 year ago) Permalink

i love manny farber's quote, "Unlike Klee, who stayed small and thus almost evaded affectation, Antonioni's aspiration is to pin the viewer to the wall and slug him with wet towels of artiness and significance."

flesh, the devil, and a wolf (wolf) (amateurist), Tuesday, 8 May 2012 05:14 (1 year ago) Permalink

i'd make an exception to my "rule" for playtime, which is definitely a postwar art film striving to be a masterpiece, but does so lightly and pretty much achieves everything it sets out to do--which has little to do with "significance."

flesh, the devil, and a wolf (wolf) (amateurist), Tuesday, 8 May 2012 05:15 (1 year ago) Permalink

I'm not sure I can really get on board with an aesthetics of smallness and lightness. Seems unduly limited. What's wrong with "significance"?

In any case I see Antonioni et al as heir to a certain strand of 19th century novel. Like the whole "novel of ideas" thing. Melville, Tolstoy, Dostoevsky. And fwiw I find the "visionary" approach far freer than the evasion of "significance."

ryan, Tuesday, 8 May 2012 05:42 (1 year ago) Permalink

that farber quote is kind of symptomatic of why he's a brilliant writer but often frustrating as a critic -- he's holding antonioni to an insane standard. it's like when he complains that 'taxi driver' is unrealistic because de niro's cab never runs out of gas.

(The Other) J.D. (J.D.), Tuesday, 8 May 2012 05:52 (1 year ago) Permalink

i dunno, his quote is a pretty accurate description of much of red desert

flesh, the devil, and a wolf (wolf) (amateurist), Tuesday, 8 May 2012 06:17 (1 year ago) Permalink

i'm not really offering an aesthetic program, just stating my preferences when the chips are down. that's what the thread is about no?

flesh, the devil, and a wolf (wolf) (amateurist), Tuesday, 8 May 2012 06:17 (1 year ago) Permalink

Yes of course. Didn't mean to give impression I was calling you out! (I actually really find your preferences in this regard really challenging and interesting so maybe just pushing back a little.)

ryan, Tuesday, 8 May 2012 06:19 (1 year ago) Permalink

And I guess this kernel of a debate is interesting to me because it touches on how we think about something like "modernism" in movies.

ryan, Tuesday, 8 May 2012 06:21 (1 year ago) Permalink

i was looking through some of the 2002 ballots and this one probably comes closest to my taste:

Peter von Bagh
director of Il cinema ritrovato festival
Finland
Top Ten

The Wedding March (von Stroheim)
Okraina (Barnet)
Make Way for Tomorrow (McCarey)
A Canterbury Tale (Powell, Pressburger)
Late Spring (Ozu)
Rio Grande (Ford)
Édouard et Caroline (Becker)
Bigger Than Life (N. Ray)
Man of the West (A. Mann)
And Life Goes On... (Kiarostami)

flesh, the devil, and a wolf (wolf) (amateurist), Tuesday, 8 May 2012 07:27 (1 year ago) Permalink

the japanese know where it's at too:

Li Cheuk-To
Chairman of the Hong Kong Critics Guild
Hong Kong
Top Ten

Au hasard Balthazar (Bresson)
Floating Clouds (Naruse)
The General (Keaton)
Mirror (Tarkovsky)
Pather Panchali (S. Ray)
The Puppetmaster (Hou)
Spring in a Small Town (Fei)
Tabu (Murnau)
Two or Three Things I Know about Her (Godard)
Vertigo (Hitchcock)

Yomota Inuhiko
Meiji Gakuin University
Japan
Top Ten

Kaagaz ke phool (Dutt)
The Story of the Late Chrysanthemums (Mizoguchi)
A Touch of Zen (Hu)
L'Age d'or (Buñuel)
Le Vent d'est (Godard)
Accattone (Pasolini)
Vampyr (Dreyer)
Napoléon (Gance)
Il deserto rosso (Antonioni)
Au hasard Balthazar (Bresson)

flesh, the devil, and a wolf (wolf) (amateurist), Tuesday, 8 May 2012 07:35 (1 year ago) Permalink

L'Age d'Or (Bunuel, 1930)
M (Lang, 1931)
Kikujiro (Kitano, 1999)
The Maltese Falcon (Huston, 1941)
Mishima (Schrader, 1985)
A Canterbury Tale (Powell & Pressburger, 1944)
Days and Nights in the Forest (Ray, 1970)
Zero de Conduite (Vigo, 1933)
For a Few Dollars More (Leone, 1965)
The Man Who Knew Too Much (Hitchcock, 1934)

like Joe Pasquale and Gandhi (Noodle Vague), Tuesday, 8 May 2012 09:30 (1 year ago) Permalink

I don't know if I expect Joel David's list to ever be topped.

Salò (Pasolini)
Manila by Night; City after Dark (Bernal)
Khalnayak (Ghai)
The Opening of Misty Beethoven (Metzger)
Hour of the Furnaces (Solanas)
La Règle du jeu (Renoir)
God Told Me To (Cohen)
La Région centrale (Snow)
Olympiad Berlin 1936 (Riefenstahl)
The Devil in Miss Jones (Damiano)

jungleous butterflies strange birds (Eric H.), Tuesday, 8 May 2012 12:32 (1 year ago) Permalink

And fwiw I find the "visionary" approach far freer than the evasion of "significance."

Yeah, one of the major reasons I've never been able to get with the deification of screwball ethos.

jungleous butterflies strange birds (Eric H.), Tuesday, 8 May 2012 12:33 (1 year ago) Permalink

how is screwball (which you sometimes broaden to mean "wacky comedy," but let's lay that aside) inherently less significant than horror? Both offer a vision of human trials that aim to reveal character.

World Congress of Itch (Dr Morbius), Tuesday, 8 May 2012 13:54 (1 year ago) Permalink

to argue that either Godfather is top-10 when Coppola can't figure out what to do with Diane Keaton, that's a problem.

We've argued this before...My problem with Keaton is more the woodenness of her performance (sometimes she's okay) than Coppola not knowing what to do with her. But to me, there are supporting performances just as wooden in The Searchers and Vertigo.

clemenza, Tuesday, 8 May 2012 14:08 (1 year ago) Permalink

Both offer a vision of human trials that aim to reveal character.

Horror offers a representation of a universal human emotion, one which is easily transmuted over to experiences (i.e. mechanized dehumanization) not necessarily closely related to the thing being represented (i.e. chainsaw massacres). Wacky comedy reveals people trying to make people laugh, which is fine, but usually it's better when my friends do it to me.

jungleous butterflies strange birds (Eric H.), Tuesday, 8 May 2012 14:13 (1 year ago) Permalink

I see way more of my life in comedy. And invariably find comedy in the best horror too.

(I guess I won't quote Michael O'Donoghue's "Making people laugh is the lowest form of comedy" again. Oops! Jerry Lewis's best films don't make me laugh that much.)

World Congress of Itch (Dr Morbius), Tuesday, 8 May 2012 14:21 (1 year ago) Permalink

Agreed, I like Jerry Lewis movies because they are basically horror movies.

jungleous butterflies strange birds (Eric H.), Tuesday, 8 May 2012 14:23 (1 year ago) Permalink

I wonder whether Criterion reissues of his later films have made L'Avventura less an obvious choice for inclusion. These days I'd rank L'Eclisse over it.

Exile in lolville (Alfred, Lord Sotosyn), Tuesday, 8 May 2012 14:26 (1 year ago) Permalink

^^^ me, on all days

jungleous butterflies strange birds (Eric H.), Tuesday, 8 May 2012 14:28 (1 year ago) Permalink

In any case I see Antonioni et al as heir to a certain strand of 19th century novel. Like the whole "novel of ideas" thing. Melville, Tolstoy, Dostoevsky. And fwiw I find the "visionary" approach far freer than the evasion of "significance."

Kael cited Woolf, Mann, Joyce, and James in her review ("In any case I see Antonioni et al as heir to a certain strand of 19th century novel. Like the whole "novel of ideas" thing. Melville, Tolstoy, Dostoevsky. And fwiw I find the "visionary" approach far freer than the evasion of "'significance.'")

Exile in lolville (Alfred, Lord Sotosyn), Tuesday, 8 May 2012 14:29 (1 year ago) Permalink

Wacky comedy reveals people trying to make people laugh

almost never, if you're talking about the people on the screen.

World Congress of Itch (Dr Morbius), Tuesday, 8 May 2012 14:33 (1 year ago) Permalink

I'm always surprised when I remember Kael actually liked L'avventura.

jungleous butterflies strange birds (Eric H.), Tuesday, 8 May 2012 14:34 (1 year ago) Permalink

Wacky comedy reveals people trying to make people laugh, which is fine, but usually it's better when my friends do it to me.

You're too short for that gesture.

Exile in lolville (Alfred, Lord Sotosyn), Tuesday, 8 May 2012 14:35 (1 year ago) Permalink

I'm also too pale for Miami, but I still look forward to having a face-to-face with you in which we trade nothing but AAE lines. Some snowy night, in front of the fire.

jungleous butterflies strange birds (Eric H.), Tuesday, 8 May 2012 14:36 (1 year ago) Permalink

Killer to killer!

Exile in lolville (Alfred, Lord Sotosyn), Tuesday, 8 May 2012 14:40 (1 year ago) Permalink

Very effective. But why take it out on me?

jungleous butterflies strange birds (Eric H.), Tuesday, 8 May 2012 14:42 (1 year ago) Permalink

this whole "which genre is more profound" is a pretty stupid exercise.

flesh, the devil, and a wolf (wolf) (amateurist), Tuesday, 8 May 2012 15:46 (1 year ago) Permalink

Everybody has pretty stupid exercises, except some people.

jungleous butterflies strange birds (Eric H.), Tuesday, 8 May 2012 15:48 (1 year ago) Permalink

pretty stupid exercise vs reverse massage

World Congress of Itch (Dr Morbius), Tuesday, 8 May 2012 15:52 (1 year ago) Permalink

remove bookmark

the acquisition and practice of music is unfavourable to the health of (abanana), Tuesday, 8 May 2012 15:53 (1 year ago) Permalink

One good bookmark removal and you'll be rid of that Miss Caswell forever.

jungleous butterflies strange birds (Eric H.), Tuesday, 8 May 2012 15:57 (1 year ago) Permalink

Back to the Copacabana.

Exile in lolville (Alfred, Lord Sotosyn), Tuesday, 8 May 2012 16:02 (1 year ago) Permalink

no way are there any wooden performances in 'vertigo'!

(The Other) J.D. (J.D.), Tuesday, 8 May 2012 18:01 (1 year ago) Permalink

if jerry lewis counts as horror, surely 'bringing up baby' does.

(The Other) J.D. (J.D.), Tuesday, 8 May 2012 18:04 (1 year ago) Permalink

It's not like the Tom Helmore villain in Vertigo is supposed to evoke (or display) passionate feelings, he's just an enigma / agent of chaos.

World Congress of Itch (Dr Morbius), Tuesday, 8 May 2012 18:07 (1 year ago) Permalink

Yeah, the spectacle of Cary Grant leaping gay is sort of a horrorshow.

jungleous butterflies strange birds (Eric H.), Tuesday, 8 May 2012 18:12 (1 year ago) Permalink

it's 'night of the living dead' with hepburn starring as the zombies

(The Other) J.D. (J.D.), Tuesday, 8 May 2012 18:13 (1 year ago) Permalink

Kael cited Woolf, Mann, Joyce, and James in her review ("In any case I see Antonioni et al as heir to a certain strand of 19th century novel. Like the whole "novel of ideas" thing. Melville, Tolstoy, Dostoevsky. And fwiw I find the "visionary" approach far freer than the evasion of "'significance.'")

The films are visually incredibly exciting but the narratives are often so lacking (not in a bad way -- always feel they are giving way to more important things), and what they have to say about anything so thin that I can't quite see this comparison coming off.

xyzzzz__, Tuesday, 8 May 2012 20:47 (1 year ago) Permalink

Well, she meant that the film approaches on visual terms the "heft" of what the modernists attempted.

Exile in lolville (Alfred, Lord Sotosyn), Tuesday, 8 May 2012 20:50 (1 year ago) Permalink

Yes and for my part i think the comparison holds in the sense of that those novels were kind of an arena for entertaining philosophical ideas.

ryan, Tuesday, 8 May 2012 20:52 (1 year ago) Permalink

Why not compare it w/modernist painting, sculpture and architecture then which also perhaps entertain ideas that might be of a philosophical bent?

OK, guess she was a writer but still..

xyzzzz__, Tuesday, 8 May 2012 20:55 (1 year ago) Permalink

Those prob are better forms of comparison!

ryan, Tuesday, 8 May 2012 21:09 (1 year ago) Permalink

Theater too

ryan, Tuesday, 8 May 2012 21:09 (1 year ago) Permalink

I think she mentions painting in her review.

Exile in lolville (Alfred, Lord Sotosyn), Tuesday, 8 May 2012 21:15 (1 year ago) Permalink

no way are there any wooden performances in 'vertigo'!

If you agree that it's as great as its reputation, I'm sure that's true.

clemenza, Tuesday, 8 May 2012 21:20 (1 year ago) Permalink

so weird that Kim Novak was a star

Exile in lolville (Alfred, Lord Sotosyn), Tuesday, 8 May 2012 21:22 (1 year ago) Permalink

I'm sure her tentativeness was part of her charm

Exile in lolville (Alfred, Lord Sotosyn), Tuesday, 8 May 2012 21:22 (1 year ago) Permalink

Have you read Truffaut's Hitchcock book? I think he was mostly charmed by her sweaters.

clemenza, Tuesday, 8 May 2012 21:26 (1 year ago) Permalink


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