Pier Paolo fucking Pasolini: Search (I don't want to hear your destroy choices cause they're of no fucking interest to me)

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The title does the job that the opening post can't add anything to.

, Thursday, 17 June 2004 02:05 (fifteen years ago) link

you should be very proud

keith m (keithmcl), Thursday, 17 June 2004 02:21 (fifteen years ago) link

i want to watch salo in relation to the prisoner abuses in abu ghabi...as sontag did in the nyt magazine

anthony, Thursday, 17 June 2004 02:45 (fifteen years ago) link

Sorry, that title was a bit aggressive. But really, what's to search? I've only seen Salo, and i'm wonderin' what his other work shares with it if anything?

, Thursday, 17 June 2004 06:34 (fifteen years ago) link

here's the thread on salo:

Passolini's Salo - classic or dud?

Julio Desouza (jdesouza), Thursday, 17 June 2004 06:39 (fifteen years ago) link



Fr4ncis W4tlingt0n (Francis Watlington), Thursday, 17 June 2004 12:10 (fifteen years ago) link

Yes, Salo is pretty bad. I'm sorry, but I had to say that.

Tuomas (Tuomas), Thursday, 17 June 2004 12:25 (fifteen years ago) link

Salo's the one I've chosen not to watch more than any of the others, haha - I just don't need to see that kinda thing even if I love the director, which I do. I say search "Oedipus" and "Medea" - the opening section of Medea is a spell-out-Marxism-for-you-dummies snoozefest, but once the story gets underway it's great, and in both of these film's Pasolini's treatment of myth & primary sources is both radical and very carefully considered. If you're doing work in Greek tragedy & you see one of these two movies, you're struck (or I was, anyhow) by how much insight Pasolini has into both the mechanisms that run tragedy (Oedipus's visit to the oracle in the film is just terrifying & evocative of so much about Oedipus's character, amazing P.O.V. stuff without ever actually being explicitlly P.O.V.) and into the characters of myth. The closing image and its accompanying line of dialogue in P's Medea has scarred me for life.

J0hn Darn1elle (J0hn Darn1elle), Thursday, 17 June 2004 12:33 (fifteen years ago) link

I saw 100 Days of Sodom in Italy last fall. The claimed it was the first release of the film unexpurgated. Too bad they bothered. Very dated, very Italian art movie sexy--i.e., not sexy. The scat sequences, however, are still revolting despite the passage of time. Possibly on account of his obvious love of the booty and all its products.

Skottie, Thursday, 17 June 2004 13:54 (fifteen years ago) link

Salo's the one I've chosen not to watch more than any of the others, haha - I just don't need to see that kinda thing even if I love the director, which I do.

That attitude is classic if you refused to see 'Kill Bill' for the same reasons, and super dud if you didn't.

Momus (Momus), Thursday, 17 June 2004 16:22 (fifteen years ago) link

(I'm fond of Medea, The Canterbury Tales, The Decameron, the 1001 Nights -- his 'Carry On' films, his folktronic films -- and his poetry! Search Cerith Wynn Evans' films of the poetry!)

Momus (Momus), Thursday, 17 June 2004 16:27 (fifteen years ago) link

What about his peformance as a gun-totin' Catholic priest in "Requiescant"? He was a excellent spag western star, handsome bastard.

Dadaismus (Dada), Thursday, 17 June 2004 16:30 (fifteen years ago) link

Salo isn't really that hard to watch. It's not as bad as people make it out to be. By "bad" I mean "disgusting" or whatever.

scott seward (scott seward), Thursday, 17 June 2004 16:48 (fifteen years ago) link


don't like Salo.

(Jon L), Thursday, 17 June 2004 17:12 (fifteen years ago) link

yeah Momus the thing is I didn't go see Kill Bill, and for the exact same reasons as you didn't, but I also didn't bust out with the "here's what's wrong with Kill Bill and here's how it's emblematic of American culture & especially the REPUBLICANS!!! omgwtf you are reactionary if you like it!" see 'cause if you didn't actually see a movie the only thing you reasonably say about it is "I didn't want to watch it 'cause of this or that thing I suspected about it"

J0hn Darn1elle (J0hn Darn1elle), Thursday, 17 June 2004 17:41 (fifteen years ago) link

(also while I'm at it I consider the Pasolini films I like his We Shall All Be Healed films c & p 2004 4AD/the Beggars Group)

J0hn Darn1elle (J0hn Darn1elle), Thursday, 17 June 2004 17:43 (fifteen years ago) link

Does anyone like the shit jokes in Salo - like 'What's the difference between "8", "no-no" and "the family"?' and so on? Has anyone read the Stories from the city of God book? If so, worth losing money for?

, Thursday, 17 June 2004 18:18 (fifteen years ago) link

My favorite PPP film is "Hawks and Sparrows".

o. nate (onate), Thursday, 17 June 2004 18:37 (fifteen years ago) link

Gary Indiana's book on Salo is terrific - the film itself is rubbish.

jed_ (jed), Thursday, 17 June 2004 18:40 (fifteen years ago) link

i think what makes "salo" possibly odious are the intellectual pretensions, which render it hypocritical: it's impossible to imagine pasolini spending months choreographing scenes of humiliation and torture in such an aestheticized fashion (albeit mostly in long shot) while all the while claiming to be excoriating same as some symptom of fascism/whathaveyou.

people don't seem to be eager to review "salo" as a film as opposed to as a gesture or a statement, which is unfortunate because there are both interesting and howlingly bad things about it. i think it's reputation as some kind of charnelhouse is a bit unearned. certainly something like "the animals' film" is far more difficult (say, impossible) to watch.

all of his films are interesting, to say the least, but none of them has quite satisfied me completely, except (maybe) "mamma roma."

"oedipus rex," btw, was a major inspiration for the taiwanese new wave directors.

amateur!st (amateurist), Thursday, 17 June 2004 18:46 (fifteen years ago) link

I recommend Theorem, The Gospel According To Saint Matthew and the Trilogy of Life (Decameron/Canterbury Tales/Arabian Nights).

Salo is certainly unpleasant and disturbing, but not that bad. I found it to be a very controlled and measured film, as though everything in it had been carefully thought out to fit into a precise framework. I didn't flinch once during the faeces banquet scene, but then perhaps that's what a decade of watching Eurotrash does for you...

Ben Mott (Ben Mott), Thursday, 17 June 2004 18:47 (fifteen years ago) link

I loved The Gospel According to Saint Matthew. It almost made me want to reinvestigate my lapsed Christian upbringing. His first, Accattone is real good, an affecting bit of neo-realism. I think those may be the only two I've seen. Always wanted to see more, but I'd rather wait for the odd screening around town than go out and rent his stuff.

Broheems (diamond), Thursday, 17 June 2004 19:07 (fifteen years ago) link

Broheems yr right to do as you do - practically all the DVD transfers & most of the videotapes are awful, with unreadable subtitles & so forth. So Accatone's good, though? What about the Porcile - anybody seen that? They've got it at the video store down the street and it looks like it could be either priceless or worthless.

J0hn Darn1elle (J0hn Darn1elle), Thursday, 17 June 2004 19:26 (fifteen years ago) link

I ordered that Indiana book last week. Amateur!st, what do you think of, say, the interspersing of the shit Bolshevik joke and the fascists dancing comically with the scenes of torture? Do you think it's an effective achievement of a sort of campy insanity or just contrivedly fucked-up half-assed subversion? Do you think those campy bits are the "howlingly bad" bits?

, Thursday, 17 June 2004 19:54 (fifteen years ago) link

The Gospel of St Matthew, aside from making jesus sexy (which is rather difficult), did some things that i thot was almost impossible.

a) it made real christs struggle (not passion or suffering, but struggle... in the political, economicic, fight the power sense)
b) it made christ human...by casting "real" people, by casting his mother and the hustlerr, by filming it how and where he filmed it it seemed as authentic as possible.
c)it was dusty, dirty, unkempt.
d) even managing b/c it was also poetic, it did not suffer the overly literal (he read the text, and moved from it, was not stuck there)

anthony, Thursday, 17 June 2004 20:24 (fifteen years ago) link

oh and his poetry is amazing

anthony, Thursday, 17 June 2004 20:26 (fifteen years ago) link

I've read his novel A Violent Life which I liked very much.

Gear! (Gear!), Thursday, 17 June 2004 20:27 (fifteen years ago) link

Some info about Cerith Wyn Evans' film PPP / Ostia:

'In a series of works, Wyn Evans has staged text quotations either in the form of neon signs or letters made from fire-crackers. The 16mm film P.P.P (Oedipus Rex) (1998) documents the construction of a wooden scaffolding on the beach of Ostia (a harbour city of ancient Rome). The film displays the text, “On the banks of the Livenza silvery willows are growing in wild profusion. Their bows dipping into the drifting water”, written in fireworks. The quote is taken from the film Oedipus Rex (1967) by Pier Paolo Pasolini (the director was murdered by a lover on the very beach in 1975). Set against the sea and the night sky, the writing is set ablaze by the fireworks. Elegiac beauty is celebrated in a self-destructing spectacle. A memory of violent death is invoked, together with an image of grace and peace. Again, a simple visual thrill produces a sensual experience in which the invisible history of a clandestine life and philosophy are implicated. What you actually see becomes inseparable from what you potentially know. The obvious is enriched by the perceptible presence of the arcane.'

Anthony, I think you would like CWE's work, if you don't already know it.

Momus (Momus), Thursday, 17 June 2004 20:46 (fifteen years ago) link

I never found the movie shocking. Just very...UNDERWHELMING.

Francis Watlington (Francis Watlington), Friday, 18 June 2004 01:55 (fifteen years ago) link

and yet, UNDERWHELMING is in a capital letters....

amateur!st (amateurist), Friday, 18 June 2004 03:24 (fifteen years ago) link

So what is the Salo Criterion DVD going for these days? $500? $600?

Broheems (diamond), Friday, 18 June 2004 03:29 (fifteen years ago) link

yeah, it wouldn't be nearly so exciting if it were, i dunno, insomnia that was taken out of print so mysteriously.

amateur!st (amateurist), Friday, 18 June 2004 03:39 (fifteen years ago) link

anyways, the bfi disc is better quality.

todd swiss (eliti), Friday, 18 June 2004 05:01 (fifteen years ago) link

I have absolutely no interest in Salo.

When Medea gets into its stride, it's utterly gorgeous and glorious to watch. He did a short in the RoGoPaG film-of-four-films called Ricotta that's slightly skewed my watching of The Gospel According To St Matthew: it's sort of amiable mildly-satirical slapstick until the point where it isn't anymore.

cis (cis), Friday, 18 June 2004 05:39 (fifteen years ago) link

you mean the one with orson welles? that is incredible.

amateur!st (amateurist), Friday, 18 June 2004 05:41 (fifteen years ago) link

yeah! the interview bit in the middle, especially, is one of my favourite bits in any film ever. (though I haven't watched it for a while now: in my head it's really, really shoddily dubbed, making it a thousand times better.)

cis (cis), Friday, 18 June 2004 05:45 (fifteen years ago) link

Is there any straightforward bio of him?

, Friday, 18 June 2004 07:17 (fifteen years ago) link

I think the reason I like Salo is because I adore tedium. Do any other fans recognise this characteristic in themselves?

, Friday, 18 June 2004 08:45 (fifteen years ago) link

one year passes...
In politics too, or better, in the social debate, Pasolini was able to create scandal and debate with some assertions that were as much unheard as, at the same time, true: during the disorders of 1969, when university students were acting in a guerrilla-like fashion against the police in the streets of Rome, all the leftist forces declared their complete support for the students, and described the disorders as a civil fight of proletarians against the system. Pasolini, instead, alone among the communists, declared that he was with the police; or, more precisely, with the policemen, considering them true proletarians who were sent to fight against boys of their same age for a poor salary and reasons which they could not understand, because they had not had the fortune of being able to study

I'm beginning to think was infinitely better as an essayist than he was as a film maker.

Dom Passantino (Dom Passantino), Thursday, 13 April 2006 15:41 (thirteen years ago) link

one year passes...

NYC retro:


wow, I didn't expect to run into Momus-JohnD debate here. My favorites are Teorema and The Gospel According to Saint Matthew, need to see Porcile, Notes twd an African Oresteia and (maybe) Salo.

Dr Morbius, Thursday, 29 November 2007 18:34 (eleven years ago) link

Salo is kind of distanced and numbed and I really don't feel it's that bad. The selection of the victims at the beginning is more disturbing than most of what transpires after. Doing Sade is more or less like doing Fielding except the eating scenes are a bit queasier.

Noodle Vague, Thursday, 29 November 2007 18:45 (eleven years ago) link

eight months pass...

I say search "Oedipus" and "Medea" - the opening section of Medea is a spell-out-Marxism-for-you-dummies snoozefest, but once the story gets underway it's great, and in both of these film's Pasolini's treatment of myth & primary sources is both radical and very carefully considered. If you're doing work in Greek tragedy & you see one of these two movies, you're struck (or I was, anyhow) by how much insight Pasolini has into both the mechanisms that run tragedy (Oedipus's visit to the oracle in the film is just terrifying & evocative of so much about Oedipus's character, amazing P.O.V. stuff without ever actually being explicitlly P.O.V.) and into the characters of myth.

Might be strange trying to comment on years old comments now, but which part of the beginning of Medea is 'Marxism-for Dummies'? I saw it a couple of days ago now...anyway, once this gets going its probably one of the most gorgeous films. Love the acres of silence during the rituals to the sudden switch. I do feel I missed loads, I've only skim-read the play a couple of times. Needs more work...

xyzzzz__, Sunday, 3 August 2008 22:33 (eleven years ago) link

one year passes...

ACCATONE is incredible

"Where's Momus? He could clear all of this up" (Tape Store), Wednesday, 24 March 2010 21:27 (nine years ago) link

I remember reading that in the original case, someone suggested showing Salo in court as part of the defence, so as to imply that anyone who made such a film was practically begging to be murdered.

Freedom, Wednesday, 24 March 2010 21:54 (nine years ago) link

Still think the fuss over Salo is kinda exaggerated and ridiculous.

Allbran Burg (Noodle Vague), Wednesday, 24 March 2010 22:16 (nine years ago) link

found this sequence very moving when i watched nanni moretti's dear diary


harshbuzz to my chilt-on (zvookster), Wednesday, 24 March 2010 22:25 (nine years ago) link

nanni moretti's dear diary

wanna see this film so bad. admittedly have not been keeping up but it was the hardest thing to find a couple of years back.

egregious apostrophising (schlump), Wednesday, 24 March 2010 22:28 (nine years ago) link

yeah i saw it in a theater. and he has like ten films before that that are very hard to see.

harshbuzz to my chilt-on (zvookster), Wednesday, 24 March 2010 22:43 (nine years ago) link

three years pass...

saw the bfi's new digital print of Theorem this evening, my first viewing. very beautiful in places - quite a lot of the landscapes seemed to be 'revisiting' antonioni locations (chiefly from Il Grido and Red Desert), and the film overall had a very heavy godarian vibe (accentuated of course by the presence of Anne Wiazemsky). interesting morricone score, too, sliding between straight jazz themes and more dissonant orchestral arrangements that mirror the film's fractured narrative, where the framing of bodies and landscapes and buildings is more important and considered - poetic effect - than narrative realism or consequence.

Ward Fowler, Sunday, 26 May 2013 19:30 (six years ago) link

five months pass...


retrospective going in DC for free at the National gallery of Art

curmudgeon, Friday, 15 November 2013 18:04 (five years ago) link

one year passes...

yesterday was the 40th anniversary of his murder

'65 interview:

Only a person with a great deal of professional experience is capable of inventing technically. As far as technical inventions go, I have never made any. I may have invented a given style—in fact, my films are recognizable for a particular style—but style does not always imply technical inventions. Godard is full of technical inventions. In Alphaville there are four or five things that are completely invented—for example those shots printed in negative. Certain technical rule-breakings of Godard are the result of a pains-taking personal study.

As for me, I never dared to try experiments of this kind, because I have no technical background. And so my first step was to simplify the technique. This is contradictory, because as a writer I tend to be extremely complicated—that is, my written page is technically very complex. While I was writing Una Vila Violente— technically very complex—I was shooting Accattone, which was technically very simple. This is the principal limitation of my cinematic career, because I believe that an author must have complete knowledge of all his technical instruments. A partial knowledge is a limitation. Therefore, at this particular moment, I believe that the first period of my cinematic work is about to close. And the second period is about to start, in which I will be a professional director also as far as technique in concerned.


skateboards are the new combover (Dr Morbius), Tuesday, 3 November 2015 17:09 (three years ago) link


interesting article if you can read Spanish and are interested in Pasolini's life-long passion for football (soccer).

Most interesting (to me) anecdote: Pasolini and Bertolucci had a falling out, they had once been close - Bertolucci having been an assistant director for Pasolini. They were filming in the general vicinity of each other - Pasolini filming Saló, Bertolucci Novecento - and Pasolini's helpers thought to cheer Pasolini up a meeting between the crews might be nice. Pasolini suggested a game of soccer. He played for the Saló crew, while Bertolucci was a bystander. Novecento won 5-2, Pasolini got mad, and stormed off after the game without even greeting Bertolucci.

you too could be called a 'Star' by the Compliance Unit (jim in glasgow), Tuesday, 3 November 2015 17:40 (three years ago) link

Wish there was a cheap-ish copy of a selection of hsi poetry to hand

xyzzzz__, Wednesday, 4 November 2015 12:24 (three years ago) link

one year passes...

rewatched Abel Ferrara's Pasolini tonight. found it angrier than i remembered it, suitably angry tbh. such a sense of waste at the end.

Rock Wokeman (Noodle Vague), Wednesday, 21 December 2016 22:59 (two years ago) link

That jim in glasgow story, two posts up, is awesome.

The Doug Walters of Crime (Tom D.), Thursday, 22 December 2016 00:23 (two years ago) link

six months pass...

“Pino Pelosi, a former rent boy convicted in the 1975 murder of writer and director Pier Paolo Pasolini, died of cancer in a Rome hospital aged 58 Wednesday night,” reports ANSA. “Pelosi confessed to murdering Pasolini the day after his death on November 2, 1975 but several years later retracted his confession, fueling conspiracy theories that the iconic leftist gay novelist, poet and filmmaker had been assassinated by political opponents. Pelosi was found guilty in 1976 of murder along with unknown others; the court ruled he was not alone.”


Supercreditor (Dr Morbius), Friday, 21 July 2017 20:40 (two years ago) link

one year passes...

I resaw the Ferrara film tonight, and somehow never knew Ninetto Davoli became PPP's bf at age 15 til AF brought it up in the Q&A.

a Mets fan who gave up on everything in the mid '80s (Dr Morbius), Saturday, 4 May 2019 05:08 (four months ago) link

four weeks pass...

enjoyed Mamma Roma, I had never watched it before. It was dedicated to Rossellini and was made with Rome, Open City in mind, using the same actress, Anna Magnani, who is fantastic. It was interesting to read that Pasolini’s actors were mostly nonprofessionals who only starred in his films, and that he chose them because their acting did not seem “real” (eg, Ettore’s sleepwalking gait). I recognized quite a few of them in this from Accattone (the only other film of his I have seen so far)

Dan S, Monday, 3 June 2019 22:40 (three months ago) link

never watched a film with Ninetto Davoli in it before. He is really charming in The Hawks and the Sparrows, as is Totò. I like that Pasolini as an atheist was looking for beauty in representations of faith

Dan S, Sunday, 9 June 2019 23:56 (three months ago) link

Davoli is in the Ferrara film... and a young actor plays him in it

a Mets fan who gave up on everything in the mid '80s (Dr Morbius), Monday, 10 June 2019 01:18 (three months ago) link

I will look for it

Dan S, Monday, 10 June 2019 01:29 (three months ago) link

wow Oedipus Rex is very satisfying. Franco Citti is such a hot-head!

Dan S, Friday, 14 June 2019 02:19 (three months ago) link

I liked the abrupt split in eras in which the story took place, and that the time rupture did not coincide with the film’s division into its first and second parts

Dan S, Friday, 14 June 2019 02:26 (three months ago) link

amateurist’s comment above that “it was a major inspiration for the taiwanese new wave directors” is interesting

Dan S, Friday, 14 June 2019 02:29 (three months ago) link

also like that the thread starter has no user name

Dan S, Friday, 14 June 2019 03:11 (three months ago) link

three weeks pass...

Salò, or the 120 Days of Sodom is the first Pasolini film that has let me down

looking forward to seeing Theorem

haven't found a way yet to watch The Gospel According to Saint Matthew

Dan S, Sunday, 7 July 2019 02:34 (two months ago) link


Dan S, Sunday, 7 July 2019 02:36 (two months ago) link

Let's wait for Morbs to return from his Teorema screening earlier today.

TikTok to the (Alfred, Lord Sotosyn), Sunday, 7 July 2019 03:03 (two months ago) link

It has its moments, even a few after Stamp departs, and I like how he makes Milan look like shit.

It's not a very queer movie; falling in love with Stamp is just a metaphor for having your bourgeois self wrecked. Not one of his best.

a Mets fan who gave up on everything in the mid '80s (Dr Morbius), Sunday, 7 July 2019 05:20 (two months ago) link

Had to turn off the gospel of st matthew, couldn't get past the seemingly endless series of pronouncements in close up. decameron was ok but I don't think I get pasolini at all right now

or something, Sunday, 7 July 2019 06:30 (two months ago) link

two weeks pass...

Rewatched Accatone, his first and among the best and most unsparing. Franco Citti had a very beautiful/ugly thing goin' on. (He's in many of the later films and shows up in Sicily in The Godfather.) The recurring scenes of the ne'er-do-wells' main hangout also anticipates the sidewalk social club/cafe in The Sopranos.

a Mets fan who gave up on everything in the mid '80s (Dr Morbius), Monday, 22 July 2019 18:33 (one month ago) link

Franco Citti's crooked teeth are distracting

Josefa, Monday, 22 July 2019 23:57 (one month ago) link

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