Thursday, September 04, 2008

Sept revivals: first third.

Mike here. Sorry for the lateness and the soon-to-be-apparent laziness. But I've just completed my time attending the U.S. Open. Had my usual fun out there. But it kept me from going behind the computer to write up a list. And as I started to put the first half of this month together, I started getting nervous about tackling a lot of titles at once. My only solution: to split up this month into thirds. Not my first choice, but the best I can do. Which means a real small list. Here we go:

THE WAGES OF FEAR- Thurs Sept 4 at 7 and 9:40- Film Forum- Part of the French Crime Film retrospective. From the director of Diabolique. 4 desperate macho men will get the reward of a ticket out of the hellhole, piss-poor little South American village they're all stuck in. That is, if they're willing to drive trucks filled with nitroglycerin over mountain sides and through jungles, in order to put out a fire at an oil refinery. They also battle each other, with macho posturing just as threatening as the elements. Starring Yves Montand.

Perennially in imdb's annoying top 250. Winner of the Grand Prize at Cannes. Diabolique is director's Henri-Georges Clouzet's best known film, but this is considered his best. I've never seen it, but I've seen the American remake from 1977, Sorcerer, which is underrated (released the same weekend that Star Wars went into wide release, therefore forgotten). Would love to catch this. According to the Forum's website, the version being screened is about 9 minutes longer then the cut version released in 1955, but 8 minutes shorter than the director's cut.

SHOOT THE PIANO PLAYER- Tues Sept 9 and Wed Sept 10 at 7:45 and 9:30- A new 35mm print of this, the last of the French Crime Film retrospective. Francois Truffaut's version of a gangster film, where thriller and comedy aspects are thrown into the genre in uneven amounts. A concert pianist, burned out and widowed, works in a dive. Has 2 hot chicks who want him, but he's closer to Spock then to an emotionally expressive person, except when he plays the piano. But now that his brothers are in trouble with (amateur) criminals, things can't stay good forever. Never seen this, but the mixture of comedy, drama, thriller aspects, homages to Warner Bros B crime flicks, and a passing resemblance to Vertigo (more than just passing?!?!?), it's sounds very interesting.

That's it. Yep, only 2, and both French. Hey, that's how the calender fell into place. Let me know if there's interest. Among the titles in the next batch are a bunch of early-ish David Lean, and the return of The Godfather. Later all.

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