?

Log in

No account? Create an account
Antonioni - Eroticdreambattle — LiveJournal [entries|archive|friends|userinfo]
Tony Grist

[ userinfo | livejournal userinfo ]
[ archive | journal archive ]

Antonioni [Aug. 1st, 2007|10:00 am]
Tony Grist
I never cared about Antonioni the way I cared about Bergman, but then his films weren't made to be liked. To put it simply, Bergman seemed to be making films about us, whereas Antonioni was making films about them. His characters were bored, alienated, emotionally dead, unforgivably wealthy- and if you identified with them God help you. I've seen everything of Bergman's I can get my hands on, but I haven't seen much of Antonioni's. I've seen L'Eclisse, Blow-up and the Passenger and none of them recently. What I remember are places- the intersection we observe for ten minutes as the lovers fail to turn up and dusk falls, the haunted suburban park with the bushes rustling in the breeze, the courtyard we observe- again for the longest time and in a single shot- while Jack Nicholson is being quietly murdered behind us. In that final sequence Antonioni got the camera to pass through a barred window and back again and - while I remember someone saying something about gyroscopes I still don't know how it was done. It was the cleverest thing and absolutely riveting. Nowadays they'd use CGI and where's the fun in that?

Bergman, Antonioni- they pushed the boundaries. And they were serious about what they did. Serious is an ugly word, easy to mock, but I can't think of a better. Movies weren't just  movies for them. Movies were a way of talking about what it means to be human and- because the medium was still comparatively new- they were finding new modes of discourse and showing us things we'd never seen before. They don't make 'em like that any more- and if they don't it's because the old masters have exhausted the possibilities...
linkReply

Comments:
[User Picture]From: sovay
2007-08-01 04:51 pm (UTC)
I never cared about Antonioni the way I cared about Bergman, but then his films weren't made to be liked.

I still would like to see some of them; I never have. Not to mention Fellini. On Saturday, I passed an electronics stores that was playing La Strada in one of its display flatscreen TVs, subtitled, with the sound turned down; I watched ten minutes and I need to see the rest. That whole knot of filmmakers.
(Reply) (Thread)
[User Picture]From: poliphilo
2007-08-01 05:37 pm (UTC)
I love Fellini.

Bergman, Fellini, Bunuel- those are my favourite film makers.

Oh- and Orson Welles.

(Reply) (Parent) (Thread)
[User Picture]From: sovay
2007-08-01 05:47 pm (UTC)
Bergman, Fellini, Bunuel- those are my favourite film makers.

I have yet to see anything by Buñuel. I've wanted to see Belle de jour ever since I read a brief mention of it in the newsletter for a small independent cinema in Portland at least ten years ago; the fact that I haven't means that I should probably give up on convincing someone to watch it with me and just rent the movie already.

Oh- and Orson Welles.

I love The Third Man.

(Speaking of Antonioni's Blow-Up.)
(Reply) (Parent) (Thread)
[User Picture]From: poliphilo
2007-08-01 06:01 pm (UTC)
Bunuel is extraordinary. See anything of his you can get your hands on. Belle de Jour is his best known film, but it's only one in the unbroken string of masterpieces he produced through the fifties, sixties and early seventies.

Welles never made a bad film (well, he did as an actor, but not as a director). I belong to the minority who believe Citizen Kane was just the jumping off point and he kept on getting better.

That's fascinating about Blow Up.
(Reply) (Parent) (Thread)
[User Picture]From: besideserato
2007-08-01 10:05 pm (UTC)
As always, your tribute is the best.
(Reply) (Thread)
[User Picture]From: poliphilo
2007-08-02 08:58 am (UTC)
Thanks
(Reply) (Parent) (Thread)