Archive for category: Essays

Viridiana

30 June, 2015 (15:37) | by Peter Hogue, Essays | By: Peter Hogue

[Originally published in Movietone News 39, February 1975] Buñuel doesn’t try very hard to allay suspicions that the visible fetishistic oddments so abundant in his films are simply the byproducts of any number of peculiar fantasies and “private” obsessions in which the director is indulging himself to the exclusion of almost everyone else. But however […]

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Tristana

30 June, 2015 (08:55) | by David Willingham, Essays | By: David Willingham

[Originally published in Movietone News 39, February 1975] The camera trucks slowly left, unobtrusively, almost cautiously, as if to move out of Tristana’s way as she and Saturna approach the group of boys. It cranes above the soccer skirmish to view the scene from a dominating remove, observing the ritual conflict—a game like any other, […]

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Subida al cielo (Mexican Busride)

24 June, 2015 (15:46) | by Peter Hogue, Essays | By: Peter Hogue

[Originally published in Movietone News 39, February 1975] Even though it may initially seem one of the least impressive of Buñuel’s works, Subida al cielo (American title: Mexican Busride) is more than a footnote to his career. The story itself is simple and obvious enough. Oliviero, a young man in a relatively primitive village which […]

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Un Chien andalou, L’Age d’or, Las Hurdes, Los olvidados

23 June, 2015 (10:57) | by RC Dale, Essays | By: Movietone News contributor

[Originally published in Movietone News 39, February 1975] Paris, 1929: the height of the surrealist and the Dada boom. Two young Spaniards decide to submit a film to the reigning lions of the movement, who had their doubts about the viability of cinema to their poetics. Others had already worked in the vein—notably Jean Epstein […]

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Buñuel scenes

22 June, 2015 (11:57) | by Ken Eisler, Essays | By: Movietone News contributor

By Carlos Fuentes, selected and translated by Ken Eisler [Originally published in Movietone News 39, February 1975] In Mexico …Buñuel is of medium height, round-shouldered, powerful (an amateur boxer, military service in Spain; he also enjoys disguising himself as Guardia Civil, but with Garcia Lorca he used to disguise himself as a nun, both of […]

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Orson Welles Has a Daughter Named Rebecca

25 May, 2015 (05:40) | Alfred Hitchcock, by Robert C. Cumbow, Essays, Orson Welles | By: Robert C. Cumbow

[Originally published in Movietone News 38, January 1975] What do Hitchcock’s Rebecca (1940) and Welles’s Citizen Kane (1941) have in common? Quite a lot, it seems to me. And yet, in all my reading on film, I have run across only one brief speculation on the subject: Andrew Sarris’s, in the context of his rebuttals […]

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Meet the Seattle Techie Who Pulls the Strings Behind Stephen Tobolowsky

13 May, 2015 (08:26) | by Sean Axmaker, Essays | By: Sean Axmaker

You may know him as Sandy Ryerson on Glee or Stu Beggs on Californication or Ned Ryerson in Groundhog Day—the overly ingratiating insurance salesman Bill Murray punches. Face come to mind now? Bing! But thanks to his popular podcast and subsequent PRI radio show The Tobolowsky Files, Stephen Tobolowsky has become almost as well-known a […]

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How It Is

11 May, 2015 (04:32) | by Peter Hogue, Essays, Film Reviews, Howard Hawks | By: Peter Hogue

[Originally published in Movietone News 40, April 1975] Only Angels Have Wings is one of Hawks’s “male adventurer” films, but it is also one of his comedies—and is perhaps best understood as such. It’s comedy in the sense that it has its share of wisecracks and a hint of slapstick—but also, and more importantly, in […]

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Mr. Arkadin

7 May, 2015 (17:11) | by Richard T. Jameson, Essays, Orson Welles | By: Richard T. Jameson

[This is a program note written for “The Cinema of Orson Welles,” the Autumn 1971 film series of the University of Washington Office of Lectures & Concerts, and distributed at the November 9, 1971, showing of the film.] Mr. Arkadin is another of Welles’s European productions. The soundtrack is consequently erratic, and this, plus the […]

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The Trial

6 May, 2015 (19:02) | by Sean Axmaker, Essays, Orson Welles | By: Sean Axmaker

“[I]t’s my own picture, unspoiled in the cutting or anything else…. The producers were heroic and got it made, and there isn’t anything I had to compromise—except no sets, and I was happy with the other solution, as it turned out, even though I was kind of in love with all the work I’d done. […]

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Orson Welles goes ‘Around the World’

6 May, 2015 (08:26) | by Sean Axmaker, Essays, Orson Welles, Television | By: Editor

When handed the raw materials from an unfinished documentary about Elmyr de Hory, an art forger whose life was being written up by biographer Clifford Irving, Orson Welles took the opportunity to make something far beyond the concept of the traditional documentary. F for Fake has been called the Orson Welles’ first essay film, a […]

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The Magnificent Ambersons

4 May, 2015 (04:02) | by Robert Horton, Essays, Orson Welles | By: Robert Horton

[Originally published on The Crop Duster] This piece dates to a program note written for a Welles series in 1986. I was a co-founder, with Tom Keogh, of a nonprofit called Seattle Filmhouse, and we brought a few notable critics (Jonathan Rosenbaum and David Thomson among them), as well as Welles’ hard-working latterday cinematographer, Gary […]

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Aftereffects: Joshua Oppenheimer’s Shorts

3 May, 2015 (07:28) | by Sean Axmaker, Documentary, Essays | By: Sean Axmaker

“I’ve never thought of myself as an activist. I do think, though, that the purpose of art is to force us to confront the most painful and important aspects of who we are.” —Joshua Oppenheimer, interviewed by Jessica Kiang at Indiewire American-born filmmaker Joshua Oppenheimer is a 1997 Marshall Scholar, a 2014 recipient of the […]

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A Neglected Western: ‘Colorado Territory’

29 April, 2015 (05:38) | by Peter Hogue, Essays, Film Reviews, Raoul Walsh, Westerns | By: Peter Hogue

[Originally published in Movietone News 45, November 1975] Colorado Territory, a remake of the High Sierra plot, is an early masterpiece of the pessimistic Western. It retains the High Sierra story and works variations on most of that film’s characters. But some significant changes are also made and the result, on the whole, is much […]

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‘He’s from back home': Man and Myth in ‘High Sierra’

27 April, 2015 (05:26) | by Rick Hermann, Essays, Film Reviews, Raoul Walsh, Westerns | By: Rick Hermann

[Originally published in Movietone News 45, November 1975] One of the most memorable scenes in High Sierra takes place when Roy Earle (Humphrey Bogart) is driving towards Camp Shaw high in the mountains of California after being released from prison. The camera sweeps the Sierra peaks and pans down to Earle’s car as he pauses […]

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