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Tuesday, July 31, 2007

"A strange and terrible beauty"

"In the empty, silent spaces of the world, he has found metaphors that illuminate the silent places of our hearts, and found in them, too, a strange and terrible beauty: austere, elegant, enigmatic, haunting."

-- Jack Nicholson on Italian director Michaelangelo Antonioni, who has passed away at the age of 94. Nicholson was the star of Antonioni's The Passenger, which was screened at StudioFilmClub earlier this year.

Monday, July 30, 2007

Farewell to a Master

""I try to tell the truth about the human condition, the truth as I see it."

-- Ingmar Bergman, 1918–2007

Monday, July 23, 2007

Film reviews

There used to be a time when there were film reviews in the local newspapers. Proper film reviews, written by people who knew what they were writing about. Now, however, apart from the odd syndicated review from a foreign newspaper, and a feature in one of the Sunday papers that merely recounts the plot of a Bollywood movie and masquerades as a review, film reviews are a thing of the past. (The papers can't seem to get enough, however, of movie star gossip.)

Why we don't have film reviews in our papers anymore is a question worth exploring (along with why we don't have book reviews etc), but at another time. Yet because there aren't film reviews in the papers, that doesn't mean there aren't film reviews and film reviewers. To wit: Andre Bagoo, who at his blog, Tattoo, has written a few interesting reviews of recent films. See here for a short review of the new live-action Transformers movie, and here for a longer, more in-depth piece on the latest Harry Potter film.

An atheist film festival?

"If you were programming an Atheist Film Festival, what titles would you include?" That is the question Jim Emerson asks at his Chicago Sun Times blog, Scanners.

"I can think of many, many religious movies (from silents like Ben-Hur, through the biblical epics of the 1950s, the Christian parables of Ingmar Bergman, up to The Passion of the Christ and Dogma)," says Emerson. "But can you think of some movies that are explicitly atheistic, that argue against belief not just in religious dogma but in theism itself?"

Emerson himself is unable to think of any such films off the cuff, but there are quite a few interesting suggestions in the comments section, including Bergman's Through A Glass Darkly, Stanley Kramer's Inherit The Wind and, of course, Star Trek V.

Anyone else (assuming anyone still reads this blog) with any suggestions?

(Via Jabberwock, who has incidentally been blogging of late on Delhi's Cinefan Film Festival.)