motion picture, it's called

Monday, November 20, 2006

Recently Seen Flicks

Pleasant surprises: Barta's Krysar, an Expressionist-style animation of the Pied Piper legend; Campion's Sweetie; Bruce Conner's Breakaway, Tony Basil-a-go-go!

Unpleasant surprises: The Departed - Scorcese takes the hip and cool Infernal Affairs and turns it into a bombastic Catholic mobster melodrama (sorry, Martin, the time for The Godfather was 30+ years ago). That Scorcese thinks Tony Leung's shoes can be filled by Leonardo Dicaprio tells you most of what you need to know. Robert Frank's Pull My Daisy -
Allan Ginsburg and pals insult us with a collection of puerile, smarmy, oh-so-hipsterish jokes and gags.

Rivette's Celine and Julie Go Boating (1974) (10/10)
Preston Sturges' The Palm Beach Story (1942) (6/10)
Martin Scorcese's The Departed (2006) (4/10)
Elia Kazan's A Streetcar Named Desire (7/10)
Jiri Barta's Krysar (1985) (8/10)
Robert Montgomery's The Lady in the Lake (1947) (3/10)
Jane Campion's Sweetie (1989) (8/10)
Werner Herzog's Stroszek (1977) (7/10)
Jiri Barta's Zanikly svet rukavic (1982) (6/10)
Rivette's Paris belongs to us (1960) (9/10)
Rivette's Le coup de berger (1958) (7/10)
Alfred Werker's Shock (1946) (4/10)
Bruce Conner's A Movie (1958) (9/10)
Bruce Conner's Breakaway (1966) (7/10)
Stanley Nelson's Jonestown: The Life and Death of People's Temple (2006) (6/10)
Richard Linklater's Fast Food Nation (2006) (7/10)
Andre De Toth's Springfield Rifle (1952) (5/10)
Robert Frank's Pull My Daisy (1959) (3/10)
Wallace Berman's Aleph (7/10)

Art Moment: Nicolaus Gerhaert's Christ Child with Grapes

While in Munich's Bavarian National Museum, I saw this absolutely delightful statue of a Christ Child with Grapes (c. 1462) by Nicolaus Gerhaert v. Leyden. Gerhaert's work, though there are only 5 sculptures definitely by his hand, is among the most vivid, delicate and powerful of the late Middle Ages.

Note the great delicacy and charm of the Christ Child's hair and facial features. Gerhaert masterfully is balancing between classical traditions of nudity (this Christ Child could just be a Greek cherub but he's so much more) with the realism of the Northern Renaissance. The grapes naturally symbolize the Eucharist wine (and the blood of Christ).

Photos taken by my own hand in early September, 2006