by carl wilson

20th-Century Cinema, RIP


It's an obvious point, but: Bergman and Antonioni in two days? Wow. Also, I had no idea Antonioni was five years older than Ingmar. I would have guessed the opposite, not only because the Italian seemed more active in later years but because Bergman made some of his great masterpieces in the '50s while M.A. didn't become prolific until the early 1960s.

I've had phases of infatuation with each of these filmmakers, especially with Antonioni's early-sixties trilogy of emotional estrangement, L'Avventura, La Notte and L'Eclisse, but I do feel generationally removed from them in a way that leaves me more in mourning for an era - the greyscale landscape of European intellectuals reflecting on and reinventing existence, especially urban existence, after the War - than for the individual artists. (Whose lives were long and relatively blessed.) It does make me think of the later-1960s directors, whose work seems to me now less distant, more anticipatory of the era to follow, and how sad it will be when they begin to fall. Godard is 77... Are film directors an especially long-lived group? It seems like it, compared to, say, writers and visual artists. I suppose it requires more physical stamina just to be a film director in the first place: Miranda July was talking about this in an interview I recently heard, saying that the one thing she hadn't anticipated about making a feature film compared to every other form she'd tried was that it seemed like an Olympic endurance event - she lost something like 20 pounds, which to look at her seems practically a medical emergency. The scribblers and the daubers, though they may have at least as many vices, don't get the same regular workout. (Sculptors are always an exception.)

General | Posted by zoilus on Tuesday, July 31 at 1:40 PM | Linking Posts | Comments (1)



If there's an upside, maybe Woody Allen will be frightened into one last moody masterpiece? Poor guy's heroes are dropping like mighty flies.

Posted by Andrew on August 1, 2007 10:54 AM




Zoilus by Carl Wilson