You have to hand it to the Criterion Co. for creating DVD/Bluray jacket art that persuades (or at least suggests) that films regarded as nothing short of appalling if not calamitous during their initial release might not be all that bad. Perhaps the time has finally come to re-assess and recognize that Michael Lehman‘s Hudson Hawk…kidding! The art is from a site called Fake Criterions. Thanks to “Mr. F.” for passing it along.)
Colisee Cinema, where I caught a 2 pm screening of Robert Bresson’s L’Argent (’83). A very austere moralistic tale about crime and corruption. Inspired by Leo Tolstoy’s short story “The Forged Coupon.” Myself and six others were in the auditorium. I first saw it in ’84 in one of those awful shoebox theatres at the Beverly Center.
My Marrakech transportation rules, especially the color. The feeling of freedom and anxious excitement as you’re cruising along the streets and boulevards, swerving around pedestrians and slow bikers, getting honked at by fume-spewing taxis and buses, etc., is like nothing else. You’re a road warrior, a citizen of North Africa, and all cares and frustrations fall away.
Shoeshine guy — Saturday, 12.4, 3:55 pm. Corner of Rue El Moguouama and Avenue Med V.
The extremely helpful and gracious Marrakech Film Festival publicist & organizer Pauliine Moss of Le Public Systeme Cinema. Taken at Mansour Eddahabi hotel — Saturday, 12.4, 12:45 pm. I had lunch around the Mansour pool. Nicole Garcia (or someone that looked like her) came down and joined a group of six or seven at a table close to mine.
This afternoon I decided to suck it in and buy something evening wear-ish as a capitulation to Marrekech Film Festival standards. I went to five or six stores and couldn’t find a dress shirt with a small-enough Italian-style collar. (Big collars were the bane of my existence until small, slender ones came back.) So I bought this white shirt at a Lee Cooper store for 295 dirhams, or about 45 dollars. The collar is styled without room for a tie, but this plus my Sgt. Pepper jacket, black dress pants and black shoes will suffice.
Room #3112, Palace Es Saadi hotel — Saturday, 12.4, 6:30 pm.
The narration in this just-released trailer for Jodie Foster‘s The Beaver is deadly. The dopey-ironic copy and the narrator’s Jack-and-Jill tone is aimed at idiots. But Mel Gibson‘s hand-puppet voice is brilliant. It’s basically the voice of Ray Winstone. In interviews next year I’d like to hear Gibson doing Winstone at the beginning of Sexy Beast: “Oh yeah. Bloody hell. I’m sweatin’ here. Bakin’, boilin’, roastin’…”
USA Today guy Anthony Breznican announced a few hours ago that he’s becoming a film writer for Entertainment Weekly. So he was pretty much the movie guy at USA Today (along with Suzie Woz), and now he’ll be one of the guys at EW. Meaning, obviously, that he decided there was more of a future with the latter. Except EW is kind of like SS Brittanic (as in Richard Lester‘s Juggernaut) these days…no?
Having now seen this booteg webcam version of the trailer for Terrence Malick ‘s The Tree of Life, I think I can answer Stephen Zeitchik‘s question about “what the to-do is about.” It’s basically saying that the cosmic light of the altogether is right out there and right within us, but the rough and tumble of survival (along with some brutal parenting at the hands of a guy like Brad Pitt‘s character) keeps us in a morose and damaged place. And what a sadness that is.
This is a very touching and trippy trailer, for what it is. It got to me. And I’m glad there are no dinosaurs. I still say that only problem with this film is that flat-footed title, which has always grated.
Kids who grew up in the ’50s and ’60s under the tough, gruff and goading fathers like Pitt’s character suffered significantly, and in many cases passed it along with interest. Dysfunction breeds dysfunction. Hurt people hurt people. Pitt’s character’s generational view was primarily shaped by the Great Depression and World War II, which told them that awful things happen to people who aren’t strong and resourceful and prepared, and awful things can still happen to good people due to bad luck and happenstance.