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 Maiden's Voyage 
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MrCarmady wrote:
You'll never guess what I just watched!

!!!!!!!!!!

Did you like it? Please tell me more!

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Fri Sep 12, 2014 11:08 pm
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Hope you're feeling well!
Part III of Sokurov catch-up (there may be further sequels):
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Дни Затмения - Dni zatmeniya - Days of Eclipse (1988)
Strange, beautiful (just look at the isolation in that screencap!), and with some stellar scenes like the visit of the little boy. But I don't understand the overall significance of its individual elements and thus struggle to love it. Dunno whether that's my fault or the film's or because a character towards the end has the most unbearable voice of all time, but the colonial subtext is really interesting, and maybe I'll see it again one day and finally crack the mystery. I'm not familiar with the source novel, but I have read Strugatskiis' other stuff, and so expected something slightly different from this, both in terms of sci-fi and in terms of humour. Also, the protagonist is oddly akin to a run-of-the-mill Hollywood one - an aesthetically pleasing, sympathetic blank. Solntse and Russkiy kovcheg next.


Sat Sep 13, 2014 1:03 am
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Not a top tier Sokurov in my opinion either, but still great - Army, is your Russian still good enough that you can watch his movies without subs? Don't you also speak German? I wanna watch foreign films and know the language, that'd be so great


Sat Sep 13, 2014 1:55 am
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Yeah, I turned off the subs on this one, the only time they're useful is when there's some mumbling and I wanna check whether I understood the phrase correctly. A strong regional accent in English is more likely to make me turn the subs on, if anything. One day I'll be able to do that with French, too!
I've only seen three, this one was better than The Second Circle but not as engaging as Mother and Son.


Sat Sep 13, 2014 2:00 am
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days of eclipse was the one where I watched the second part of the rip before the first part without noticing it was wrong until the end credits came on, that was tight


Sat Sep 13, 2014 2:11 am
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MrCarmady wrote:
(just look at the isolation in that screencap!)

Wrong thread, clearly.

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Sat Sep 13, 2014 2:29 am
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Pinhead wrote:
days of eclipse was the one where I watched the second part of the rip before the first part without noticing it was wrong until the end credits came on, that was tight

haha, they are the wrong way around in the folder, yeah. the preview button for the 'second' part shows the lenfilm logo, though
JediMoonShyne wrote:
Wrong thread, clearly.

it wouldn't be a bad candidate for your thread, but i owed this one to maiden, i think it's been three years since i first told her i'd watch it


Sat Sep 13, 2014 2:33 am
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I will never forgive you.

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Sat Sep 13, 2014 2:34 am
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MrCarmady wrote:
I'm not familiar with the source novel, but I have read Strugatskiis' other stuff, and so expected something slightly different from this, both in terms of sci-fi and in terms of humour.
Haha. Wait till you see his take on George Bernard Shaw!

Who had the unbearable voice? (The person who came to fetch the boy had a horrible voice, but that's only a line or two.) Honestly, this didn't really hang together as a story until I saw it a second time, which may be a fault of the film, or just our barely adequate human brains, haha.

MrCarmady wrote:
but i owed this one to maiden
:heart:

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Sat Sep 13, 2014 7:41 am
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the man who's afraid of the ringing telephone


Sat Sep 13, 2014 9:43 am
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Oh, yeah. I don't remember his voice in particular, but his whole persona is like nails on a chalkboard.

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Sat Sep 13, 2014 9:56 am
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Oh yeah, that too. Anyway, while I'm responsive to your recommendations, I'm gonna watch Casa de lava (that one is indirect, but I've got it on DVD, so)


Sat Sep 13, 2014 10:02 am
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MrCarmady wrote:
while I'm responsive to your recommendations
How much time are we talking about here? :P

But, yes, that's a good one!

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Sat Sep 13, 2014 10:14 am
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until stocks last!


Sat Sep 13, 2014 10:15 am
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Top 10 films* I would drag people to:**

A Casa
Inland Empire
Two-Legged Horse
Guilty of Romance
Szamanka
The Sacrifice
Suspiria
Laurence Anyways
Russian Symphony
Berlin Alexanderplatz


* if they were playing somewhere

** if I knew anyone

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Sat Sep 13, 2014 10:30 pm
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Have seen and love Suspiria, didn't get through Inland Empire, and Berlin Alexanderplatz is too fucking long. I'll see what I can do about the others.


Sun Sep 14, 2014 1:27 pm
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I don't remember the story in Days of Eclipse, and I've seen it twice. Granted, one of those times was on a plane on my laptop, and my feelings of isolation and geographical dislocation mirrored those of the protagonist in the film, although that only served to depress me further rather than strenghtening my connection to the movie.


Mon Sep 15, 2014 6:35 am
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I've seen A Casa, The Sacrifice, and Suspiria. They're all great.

No clue about the others.


Mon Sep 15, 2014 6:36 am
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You can drag me anywhere, Maiden. :heart:

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Mon Sep 15, 2014 6:41 am
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MrCarmady wrote:
I'll see what I can do about the others.
:)

Beau wrote:
No clue about the others.
You haven't seen Inland Empire? Am I the only one who listens to Bear around here?!


Also, Jedi :heart:

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Wed Sep 17, 2014 8:22 am
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Shieldmaiden wrote:
You haven't seen Inland Empire? Am I the only one who listens to Bear around here?!


We all listened to Lovesexy instead.

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Wed Sep 17, 2014 8:56 am
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Team :polar:

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Wed Sep 17, 2014 10:34 am
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That list seems to be comprised of films I haven't seen by directors from whom I have seen something, or films I've seen but like less than other films made by the same people, with The Sacrifice being the only exception.


Wed Sep 17, 2014 6:22 pm
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Probably because it's a weird, spur-of-the-moment list of things I feel are generally underseen or neglected by someone in particular. I love them all, though!

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Wed Sep 17, 2014 10:15 pm
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"Someone in particular" being, of course, Circus Freak.


Wed Sep 17, 2014 10:48 pm
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I don't remember the stories of my favourite films.

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Wed Sep 17, 2014 10:49 pm
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Shieldmaiden wrote:
:)

You haven't seen Inland Empire? Am I the only one who listens to Bear around here?!


Not yet. I have it to watch on a streaming service, but I never find the three hour slot to sit down and have my mind blown.


Wed Sep 17, 2014 10:51 pm
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Beau wrote:
"Someone in particular" being, of course, Circus Freak.
Haha. The "someone" is not necessarily the same person for each film. :)

Inland Empire won't blow your mind so much as make you glad to be alive. It's rich and mysterious and cathartic.

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The Ballad of Buster Scruggs ▪ No Country for Old Men ▪ Sorry to Bother You ▪ The Hudsucker Proxy ▪ The Boy Friend ▪ The Fearless Vampire Killers ▪ Mahler ▪ Zama ▪ Delores Claiborne ▪ The Ladykillers ▪ The Rider

Voyage | Female Gaze | MACBETH | Sokurov | Fassbinder | Greenaway | Denis | Sono | my bookshelf


Thu Sep 18, 2014 12:25 am
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Trip wrote:
I don't remember the stories of my favourite films.
You are the best argument for a film journal that I've ever heard.

:heart:

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Voyage | Female Gaze | MACBETH | Sokurov | Fassbinder | Greenaway | Denis | Sono | my bookshelf


Fri Sep 19, 2014 12:10 am
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Post Maiden's Voyage: The Brothers Karamazov

Image

I’m so hyped up on Dostoevsky right now. In the past year, I’ve re-read Crime and Punishment and sped through The Double, The Gambler, and Notes from Underground for the first time. Is there anyone better at taking on a voice, becoming someone else so authentically, so ardently, that readers cannot but assume he speaks his own mind? Camus does this beautifully in The Fall, but I think Dostoevsky is even better in Notes from Underground; it’s remarkable ventriloquism.

Now I've finished The Brothers Karamazov, a dazzling spectacle of clamoring voices, each one written with understanding and special pleading, fully convincing before we move on to the next. Even the narrator has a distinct character – dry and fussy, alternately irritating and endearing. This is a big story of love, hate, mystery, and suspense; but, more than that, it's an ambitious, surprisingly modern conversation that starts within an intimate circle of family and friends, and expands to the village, the university, the church, the law, and the media. They all but take to the internet to make themselves heard! The Russia Dostoevsky gives us here is appalling and exciting, half modern, half medieval, but already tackling the ideas of the 20th century, supremely aware that it's standing on the cusp of something big. I don't know that I've ever read a novel so thoroughly built on dialogue, on the exchange of ideas from diverse perspectives. And, if the truth doesn't prevail in the end—if, in this particular case, the best voices falter or fail—it's not as discouraging as you might think. Primed by the mammoth conversation we've just read, we're ready for more, we're energized. We can keep talking till we get it right!

More thoughts on the book here.



ImageImageImage

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Wed Oct 15, 2014 2:06 am
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Really need to read more Dostoevsky.

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Wed Oct 15, 2014 2:21 am
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Did you read the excerpt in the other thread? So good...

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Voyage | Female Gaze | MACBETH | Sokurov | Fassbinder | Greenaway | Denis | Sono | my bookshelf


Wed Oct 15, 2014 2:36 am
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I did! But I figured it best to bump your thread because I love you and stuff.

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Wed Oct 15, 2014 2:46 am
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I love you, too!

If I had any patience at all, I'd have spaced out the posts. In my defense, I did just read a 776 page novel. :P

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Wed Oct 15, 2014 3:17 am
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i'm ashamed to not have read this. will make it my next russian novel.


Wed Oct 15, 2014 3:29 am
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Yay! I hope you love it as much as I did.

By a strange coincidence I had just been reading about Mikhail Bakhtin and his ideas on language and dialogism when I started this. Of course, I knew he was inspired by Dostoevsky, but, seriously, this stuff writes itself when you read Karamazov!

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The Ballad of Buster Scruggs ▪ No Country for Old Men ▪ Sorry to Bother You ▪ The Hudsucker Proxy ▪ The Boy Friend ▪ The Fearless Vampire Killers ▪ Mahler ▪ Zama ▪ Delores Claiborne ▪ The Ladykillers ▪ The Rider

Voyage | Female Gaze | MACBETH | Sokurov | Fassbinder | Greenaway | Denis | Sono | my bookshelf


Wed Oct 15, 2014 4:03 am
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Speaking of Russian literature, I've been reading a little Gogol recently. I'm really fond of his playful juggling of tones and genres. He's like the Bong Joon-Ho of 19th century Russian writers.

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n. 1. Long and tedious talk without much substance; superfluity of words.


Wed Oct 15, 2014 8:14 am
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Macrology wrote:
He's like the Bong Joon-Ho of 19th century Russian writers.
Ha! I've read hardly any Gogol, but I'll try to fix that soon.

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Wed Oct 15, 2014 8:52 am
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Post Maiden's Voyage: My Horrierino

Since so much of what I've watched lately has belonged in the My Horrierino thread, here's a link to my wrap-up in that thread:


Image

Last year's wrap-up is here.

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Voyage | Female Gaze | MACBETH | Sokurov | Fassbinder | Greenaway | Denis | Sono | my bookshelf


Thu Nov 13, 2014 1:38 am
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Post Maiden's Voyage: A Woman Under the (Karamazov) Influence

A Woman Under the Image Influence

Still under the spell of this great book, I've been doing my usual desultory research on the internet, simply because I don't want to stop thinking about it. I wish there were more discussion to be found, especially of the tantalizing claim in the preface of the novel that this was to be only the first of two books about Alexei Karamazov:

      The main novel is the second one—about the activities of my hero in our time, that is, in our present, current moment. As for the first novel, it already took place thirteen years ago and is even almost not a novel at all but just one moment from my hero's early youth. It is impossible for me to do without this first novel, or much in the second novel will be incomprehensible.

This idea is given strength by the peculiar openness of the end of the book, which introduces a new, very young character and blatantly addresses the future. (For film lovers still reading, it's Tony Leung in Days of Being Wild, only more so.) While this works, as is, to tie the story into the history of the Russian people (or, even, when added to Dmitri's plans to go to America, into a broader human canvas), the reader can't help but think about that promised second book. Because Dostoevsky died only a few months after publishing The Brothers Karamazov, we'll never know that next chapter, that main novel to which this magnificent books is mere introduction, almost not a novel at all. How amazing would that next book have been? It's mind-boggling! I'm filled with longing for this impossible thing.

But, back to that research. Various sources mention an unfinished epic called "The Life of a Great Sinner," with hints that Karamazov was to be the first piece of the larger project. I had to know more, and turned to a little book called Stavrogin's Confession and the Plan of The Life of a Great Sinner, which includes Dostoevsky's notes about the project. It turns out that the link between Karamazov and Great Sinner is not nearly so direct, despite that tantalizing preface. All his life, Dostoevsky had a profusion of ideas that never made it into finished form. In fact, he spoke of two epic novels in the last years of his life, and spent time planning them: Atheism and The Life of a Great Sinner, neither of which ever took shape. An essay by Nicolai Brodsky in the book above shares my longing for the unwritten works:

      The novels Atheism and The Life of a Great sinner clearly prove that Dostoevsky could not cope with the swarm of his creative imagination. He could not tame and conquer the rush of elemental visions. His soul burnt too fiercely to be satisfied with an inferior light. All in flames, his soul set on fire and destroyed the flashing visions. And it seems as if iron necessity alone chained the writer to the desk and made it possible for us to read his works. There is something accidental in the published works of Dostoevsky. They do not represent the whole creator; they are paler than his original conceptions.

Whoa, wait minute! What a terrible, pessimistic way to look at his finished works! Why give his notes precedence over the hard work that goes into writing an actual book? No matter how attractive his plans, who is to say that the ideas that made it past internal censors, that made it onto the page in published form, aren't better, more truly Dostoevsky, than his ambitions and notes? It's clear to me, at any rate, that The Brothers Karamazov is no pale shadow of a greater idea. In fact, his notebooks make clear that it contains many of his best ideas. Scholars have had a field day linking those notes and letters to his various novels, teasing out the vast and confusing middle ground between Dostoevsky's life experiences and their final fictional forms. And, this is where I have to confront my earlier yearnings; it's ridiculous to imply that those years of thought and planning were wasted, when so much of that work (in terms of characters, plots, and ideas) made it into print in at least three novels: The Raw Youth, Demons, and The Brothers Karamazov. The latter, at least, is magnificent, one of the greatest books I've ever read. Dreams of another, better book are truly unnecessary.

Stay tuned for the next step in my immersion in all things Karamazov: Movie adaptations.

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The Ballad of Buster Scruggs ▪ No Country for Old Men ▪ Sorry to Bother You ▪ The Hudsucker Proxy ▪ The Boy Friend ▪ The Fearless Vampire Killers ▪ Mahler ▪ Zama ▪ Delores Claiborne ▪ The Ladykillers ▪ The Rider

Voyage | Female Gaze | MACBETH | Sokurov | Fassbinder | Greenaway | Denis | Sono | my bookshelf


Thu Nov 13, 2014 1:38 am
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Post Maiden's Voyage: Karamazov Adaptation 1

A Woman Under the Image Influence

Karamazovi: This odd little film follows a Czech theater troupe to Poland where they've been invited to stage an adaptation of The Brothers Karamazov in a foundry with Solidariność history. While there, they meet a grieving father, an employee of the foundry, who starts to consider their rehearsal a personal performance. It definitely benefits from the solid foundation of a time-tested dramatic adaptation by Evald Schorm. The dialogue and staging are surprisingly compact and effective, though the sketched-in nature is clearly tailored to those already familiar with the story. The modern-day drama that buzzes around the edges of the production was always going to appear weak next to Dostoevsky (the low point an inexplicable puppet show making light of epilepsy), but it includes some valiant attempts to engage the novel's themes and ideas. Visually, it makes decent use of its unusual setting, with an chalky blue-green palette and some lovely filtered sunlight.


Image Image
Image Image

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Voyage | Female Gaze | MACBETH | Sokurov | Fassbinder | Greenaway | Denis | Sono | my bookshelf


Thu Nov 13, 2014 1:52 am
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Post Maiden's Voyage: Karamazov Adaptation 2

A Woman Under the Image Influence

Here it is: the two-and-a-half-hour Hollywood production of The Brothers Karamazov, with Yul Brynner, Maria Schell, and (yes) William Shatner. This wasn't bad... To be honest, I am having trouble separating my book-hewing obsessions from the looser requirements of the Hollywood epic. All the characters have been simplified, their inner contradictions sacrificed for clarity, and the story distilled down to a star vehicle for Yul Brynner, which makes a sort of literary (if not thematic) sense. But, real efforts have been made to hit all the narrative high points and small touches pay homage to missing chapters; it's not the filmmakers' fault that the spirit of the novel resides so much around the edges, in earnest conversations and tangential characters. Taken for what it is, the best thing about this (besides Brynner's smolder) is the way every scene is bathed in rich primary colors. It's all done with lighting, and the effect is dramatic and beautiful. And, yeah, I think I'm coming around. I'd watch this again, just for Brynner and Schell.

Image Image
Image Image
Image Image

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Voyage | Female Gaze | MACBETH | Sokurov | Fassbinder | Greenaway | Denis | Sono | my bookshelf


Thu Nov 13, 2014 2:46 am
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Wow, wasn't even aware of that one!

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Thu Nov 13, 2014 3:00 am
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Isn't it gorgeous? I wonder why it's so underseen.

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Voyage | Female Gaze | MACBETH | Sokurov | Fassbinder | Greenaway | Denis | Sono | my bookshelf


Thu Nov 13, 2014 3:17 am
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I'll watch anything with Maria Schell after Visconti's White Nights (also adapted from Dostoevsky, coincidentally!).

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Ma`crol´o`gy
n. 1. Long and tedious talk without much substance; superfluity of words.


Thu Nov 13, 2014 5:58 am
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Post Re: Maiden's Voyage

She's definitely adorable in this, and the best Grushenka of the three I saw.

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The Ballad of Buster Scruggs ▪ No Country for Old Men ▪ Sorry to Bother You ▪ The Hudsucker Proxy ▪ The Boy Friend ▪ The Fearless Vampire Killers ▪ Mahler ▪ Zama ▪ Delores Claiborne ▪ The Ladykillers ▪ The Rider

Voyage | Female Gaze | MACBETH | Sokurov | Fassbinder | Greenaway | Denis | Sono | my bookshelf


Thu Nov 13, 2014 9:39 am
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Post Maiden's Voyage: Karamazov Adaptation 3

A Woman Under the Image Influence

The Russians did it! Bratya Karamazovy is exactly what I wished for: 232 minutes of careful, faithful enactment of the novel. With one glaring exception at the very end, this is an almost word-for-word adaptation. Of course, there isn't time for everything, but the characters get to retain most of their contradictions and complexity. The stories people tell each other remain stories told, not the more filmic flashbacks or narrative compressions you might expect. Does that sound boring? It isn't, primarily because it's so well acted. The only real flaw is the actor who plays Alyosha, who seems to think he's in a silent film. He makes William Shatner look like a genius, haha. But, my favorite thing is that, with so much of the dialogue intact, many of the ideas make it in, too (in abbreviated form, of course). And, that's really admirable! Visually, it's hard to judge, since I don't have the best copy. It's obviously not trying for clever camerawork, but there's a delicate charm to many of the scenes. But, after all, it's faithfulness that's aimed for, and that's what it achieves. And it's good. It is! It's just not as much fun as the Hollywood one.

Image Image
Image Image

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The Ballad of Buster Scruggs ▪ No Country for Old Men ▪ Sorry to Bother You ▪ The Hudsucker Proxy ▪ The Boy Friend ▪ The Fearless Vampire Killers ▪ Mahler ▪ Zama ▪ Delores Claiborne ▪ The Ladykillers ▪ The Rider

Voyage | Female Gaze | MACBETH | Sokurov | Fassbinder | Greenaway | Denis | Sono | my bookshelf


Thu Nov 13, 2014 9:39 am
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Post Re: Maiden's Voyage

OK, I'm done. In case you were worried. :P

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The Ballad of Buster Scruggs ▪ No Country for Old Men ▪ Sorry to Bother You ▪ The Hudsucker Proxy ▪ The Boy Friend ▪ The Fearless Vampire Killers ▪ Mahler ▪ Zama ▪ Delores Claiborne ▪ The Ladykillers ▪ The Rider

Voyage | Female Gaze | MACBETH | Sokurov | Fassbinder | Greenaway | Denis | Sono | my bookshelf


Thu Nov 13, 2014 9:59 am
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Post Re: Maiden's Voyage

there's a japanese TV adaptation of that novel that I've been meaning to see... after I read the novel.


Thu Nov 13, 2014 10:40 am
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Post Re: Maiden's Voyage

I noticed that one, but wasn't looking for modernized versions. It does look promising. Eight hours, though!

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The Ballad of Buster Scruggs ▪ No Country for Old Men ▪ Sorry to Bother You ▪ The Hudsucker Proxy ▪ The Boy Friend ▪ The Fearless Vampire Killers ▪ Mahler ▪ Zama ▪ Delores Claiborne ▪ The Ladykillers ▪ The Rider

Voyage | Female Gaze | MACBETH | Sokurov | Fassbinder | Greenaway | Denis | Sono | my bookshelf


Thu Nov 13, 2014 11:44 am
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