Monthly Archives: February 2009

pasolini directs

Pier Paolo has a coke and a smile on the set of Mamma Roma in 1962.

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on location

Fran├žois Truffaut’s Stolen Kisses was filmed around Paris in 1968. Here are two of the locations as they appeared in the film and as they appear today.

cute band alert

mondays

The Happy Mondays are one of my favorite bands (seriously) but their videos (and some of their records) were usually woefully thrown together affairs: the band miming lazily while they stand in front of a wall. This one is probably the closest that they came to actually trying. Is there even a reference to Godard’s Two or Three Things I Know About Her? Maybe not.

two or three things

The song is one of their best too. Stay tuned for more Mondays posts.

cover art

Zabriskie Point appears on the cover of Sight and Sound more than a year before its release.

cute couple alert

Elvis Costello and Bebe Buell. (careful with that link, it’s nsfw)

She said: “He was my Clark Gable.”

He said: “At best we were strangers with a coy and theoretical entanglement…However, she turned up with eight pieces of luggage like a mail-order bride…and I was too stupid and vain to resist. She’d later claimed to have inspired most of the songs on [Armed Forces]-all of which were already written when we met…It is a tragic delusion about which I could say: ‘I shall not dignify that with a response’ but ‘dignity’ doesn’t come into this story.”

God, that Elvis has a way with words.

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Marx and Mae

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The National Film Theater Summer 1966 season.

bogdanovich picks the classics

Every ten years since 1952, Sight and Sound Film Magazine has asked a selection of international film makers and critics to compile lists of what, in their opinions, are the ten greatest films of all time. These lists serve as ballots for the supposedly authoritative top ten list that the magazine publishes. It is Citizen Kane‘s chart-topping dominance on this survey since 1962 that, I believe, has lead to its reputation as The Greatest Film Of All Time. Kane didn’t even crack the top ten in 1952. It fell into the runners up catagory with the dubious likes of Chaplin’s Verdoux.

1952

In addition to publishing the “winners” list, the magazine also prints all of the ballots, which usually make for more interesting reading than top ten. Often, the compilers cannot resist writing a short note either apologizing to films or directors excluded or explaining that had they been asked another day, they’d have compiled a completely different set of films. Here are the ten films that were blowing up Lotte Eisner’s skirt in 1962 and her brief note explaining why she chose what she did (she was still carrying a torch for Verdoux!).

eisner

Fast forward ten years and Peter Bogdanovich, whose films I quite like up to and including the great They All Laughed (which ranked on Tarantino’s 2002 Sight and Sound poll), is asked to weigh in. Along with his top ten films, he added what is without a doubt the most pretentious note in the fifty years of the poll.

bogdanovich

Bogdanovich must have thought that that sounded pretty good because he made virtually the same remarks four decades later when AFI made the mistake of asking him what his favorite film is.