Thursday, 20 November 2008

Bill Viola: I do not know what it is I am like, a feature-length film with a cast courtesy of a local zoo, and an actor. Le jour se leve: Marcel Carne on an absolute peak of pre-WW2 French cinema. Grizzly Man: Werner Herzog continues to make films out of what seems like thin air, but there's always a theme of extreme experience which, as in Little Dieter wants to Fly, he gets his subjects to relive. Here the grizzly material is all extraordinary but the man is rather less so, a bit of a misfit who finds he can tell grizzlies to stop, and rather revels in doing it, and in the danger, for his camera. In the end he miscalculates, and a hungry bear eats him and his girlfriend. But the additional feature is an hour in the studio recording music and sounds for the film, which entirely makes up for the man of the main feature. A real pleasure to watch the musicians working to make a sound that is spacious and harmonious, and yet disquieting. Pasolini, Hawks and Sparrows is hijacked by a talking jackdaw, or at least a jackdaw that strides alongside the actors: I suspect his lines were dubbed. Something rare and remarkable, a charming and amusing Pasolini film that winds through time along an open road, somewhere between Voie Lactee and Felini, but ultimately with nothing much more than charm. The additional feature tho' was Notes for a Film about India: Pasolini wandering around with the story of a raja who feeds himself to a tiger, deliberately, because the tiger is hungry, and trying to see how he can film this in modern India, a very recognisable India of 1968. What do people think of the story? How should his Maharaja look? He even talks to a Maharaja and his wife, wondering how they would feel and behave if they were in the story. An improvised, open-ended film that suggests many possibilities. Edipo Re arrived soon after, a very intense retelling of the Oedipus story that begins with the child in contemporary Italy and ends with the blind ex-king a beggar in contemporary Italy, with the rest of the film in landscapes of Morocco in the late 60s, clear strong light and intense colour.

During this period, Impressing the Czar at Sadlers Wells: the extraordinary intense fertile body and mind of William Forsythe. Worth more than all the films I've had from Lovefilm.

No comments: