Le Chat 1971 – Dir – Pierre Granier-Deferre – Starring – Jean Gabin, Simone Signoret,
They say familiarity breeds contempt. During Le Chat you definitely get the impression that the two protagonists have known each other a loooong time; probably too long.
One of my all time favourite movies is A Room at the Top (which starred Simone Signoret) a classic kitchen sink drama set in the industrial North of England. This movie very much has the same feel of a lot of those 1960s English dramas. An airing of dirty laundry in a no win situation surrounded by desolate scenery. Continue reading
Bob Le Flambeur
1955 – Dir – Jean-Pierre Melville starring Roger Duchesne
What can I say about Bob le flambeur? I have watched this movie a few times and will watch it again if only to see those great 1950s street scenes of Quartier Pigalle again. Firstly the movie is a classic gangster noir centred around the main character Bob (Roger Duchesne) who is a slightly aging some may say over it high roller (Flambeur). His best days are definitely behind him and he is also on a run of bad luck that is seeing his cash flow seriously compromised.
A creature of the night he ambles from club to club, bar to bar, card game to card game about the Montmatre-Pigalle district of Paris chasing lady luck only to return to his swish atomica styled apartment overlooking the Sacré Cœur, tired, unshaven and outta luck (all shot very beautifully by Henri Decaë in stark black and white using all of those tasty noir shadowy tricks to great effect). Continue reading
A Hard Days Night – 1964. Dir – Richard Lester starring Les Beatles
The Como Cinema in Melbourne just recently presented the new improved Criterion print of this film as part of its British Film festival and I just had to go see it. Again.
But unlike the other 50 or so times I have lost myself within this pastiche on Beatlemania this was the first time I have managed to see it on the big screen. And what a treat.
It had been years since my last viewing and the first few times I watched it as a teenager it was all about the clothes, the songs, the guitars and its still about all of that but there is so much more going on in between the wooden dialogue and ham acting. Continue reading
French/Romani – Directed by Tony Gatlif and stars Marc Lavoine, Marie-Josée Croze and James Thiérrée.
I loved this flick. I typically enjoy war movies, more for the historical significance rather than on any action pact level. I have also recently become enamoured with Django Reinhardt and the whole French/Romani Gypsy cultural heritage of Western Europe after watching Tony Gatlifs previous venture “Swing” (2000) so this one was right up my alley.
The movie centres around a Romani family that is on its way to Vichy France during the Second World War in 1943. They also pick up a small orphaned boy called Claude who is following them along their travels which adds another layer of complexity to the movie. Once they reach their final destination, a small town where they annually pick grapes, they learn that a new law forbids them from being nomadic. Continue reading
I got into a conversation with a friends daughter this week as I noticed her carrying a copy of “One flew over the cuckoos nest” by Ken Kesey.
“I have only started reading it. I found it in my parents book case and liked the picture so thought I would give it a read. This dude looks crazy as”.
“Ah Jack. I think he might have won an Oscar for that one. Or at least got nominated. Great performance”.
“They made it into a movie?”
30 second uncomfortable pause. We stare at each other.
She finally speaks “What?”
“You didn’t know it was a movie?” Continue reading