Sunday, March 6, 2011

Links and a Recommendation

Tonight, Mark and I will attempt to record our second video promo after the disastrous first attempt (both will be posted online when once they are edited). But first, I wanted to post a few more links and recommend a classic film.

During Episode 7, "The Oscar Podcast", Mark read off BKFT's producer-mixer Robert G. Chrisman's Oscar picks and here is the link for what Rob chose as the Best Original Song in a Motion Picture in 2010.

On the second half of Episode 6, "Interview with Top $ Raz/review of Waiting for "Superman", I had major issues with David Guggenheim's glorification of charter schools and his defilement of public schools in his critically acclaimed film Waiting for "Superman". Here are some links to articles I read as research and an op-ed piece that spells out why Waiting for "Superman" was not nominated for a Best Feature Documentary Oscar (Mark questioned the Academy's decision making during Episode 7).

The link to the glowing review of the film that set off a level of anger in me that I usually reserve for overrated British dramas:

Link to an article from The Nation critiquing the ideology of the movie:

The op-ed piece from the Washington Post detailing why Waiting for "Superman" was snubbed for a Best Documentary Feature:

Since Mark and I predominately review recently released films, I wanted to take a moment to celebrate Roman Polanski's classic psychological thriller Repulsion (1965). I had heard of the film for years, but it was not until I saw Polanski's incredible debut film Knife in the Water (1962), and heard Darren Aronofsky and Matthew Libatique admit that the film was a major influence over the look of The Wrestler (2008) and the story and look of Black Swan (2010), that I became fully obsessed with watching Polanski's film about obsession and sexual repression. Repulsion features a mesmerizing performance from Catherine Deneuve as the lead character, Carol, who is shy by nature and faces incessant come-ons and harassment from all the men in her life, even her sister's married lover. When Carol's sister and her lover go away on vacation, Carol is left in her sister's haunting and hollow apartment and Carol's mind slowly unravels. Stalked by one man and hounded by unremitting phone calls and knocks on the front door, Carol trembles and hides as the apartment walls around her crack and crumble onscreen. One of the major questions the film poses is what, if any of these surreal images occur in the external world? At a certain point, viewers of the film will have a tough time telling what is fantasy, Carol's midnight nightmares of rape, and reality, did she actually kill a person in the apartment?

It is also of importance to note that this film features one of the all time great closing sequences that spells out Carol's family back story in one family picture. What would take many writers and directors several scenes, or gasp, flashback sequences to illustrate, Polanski accomplishes with a slow track into one family photo.

The film features imaginative shot compositions and very languid handheld camera movements. With this film, Polanski established himself as the master of the modern psychological thriller and propelled his career into Hollywood. In the hands of a lesser director and lead actress, Repulsion would be the type of psycho-sexual schlock that this film no doubt influenced. However, in the hands of a gifted director with a twisted mind and an actress of unnerving dedication, Repulsion is the classic film I highly recommend it to be.
***1/2 Stars.

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