24 Frames: A Morte ao Vivo (La Mort en Direct, Bertrand Tavernier, 1979)

Profoundly rooted in a national culture, they refuse all spirit of insularity, serving as proof of an openness of spirit, a curiosity and almost unique breadth of vision…His intentions go beyond everyday naturalism, and lead to an irrational, metaphysical intensity which bears innumerable visions. You don’t follow a plot, you dive into a universe…

– Tavernier on Michael Powell.

Dylan Thomas – Michael Powell

The Boathouse, Laugharne, Camarthenshire, Wales, n.d., ca. late 1951, to Michael Powell, n.p. The letter reads, “Roger Burford gave your address to my agent, David Higham, and said that you wanted to hear from me about the possibility of my working on a film story. I wasn’t told any details, but I wanted, of course,Continuar lendo “Dylan Thomas – Michael Powell”

Extreme Film Choice: Michael Powell – Kim Newman

This is probably not the answer anybody expects from me, considering what I’ve discussed as a critic and attempted as a writer of fiction (although it might make sense of some of my last novel, Jago), but my choice as the greatest of extreme film-makers is Michael Powell. Yes, I know you can’t isolate PowellContinuar lendo “Extreme Film Choice: Michael Powell – Kim Newman”

24 Frames: O Assassinato de Papai Noel (L’Assassinat du Père Noël, Christian-Jaque, 1941)

The absence of overt political representation during the occupation reflects the fact that filmmakers deliberately avoided making reference to France’s material hardships and conquered status. Rather, the historical costume dramas, fantasies, and legends that dominated the films of the Vichy era reveal a “desperate wish to believe that the outside world did not exist.” EvelynContinuar lendo “24 Frames: O Assassinato de Papai Noel (L’Assassinat du Père Noël, Christian-Jaque, 1941)”

The Last Romantics – Powell & Pressburger and the Birth of Modern Cinema

Course Summary From the 1930s to the 1960s, the team of Michael Powell and Emeric Pressburger revolutionised British cinema while producing a string of all-time classics. Flamboyant and often controversial, their films mark a transition from the ‘classic’ style to the auteur cinema of today. We will explore both their films and an artistic legacyContinuar lendo “The Last Romantics – Powell & Pressburger and the Birth of Modern Cinema”


A Scandinavian Prince, Breakan, fell in love with a Princess of the Island, whose father consented to the marriage, on condition that Breakan should show his skill and courage by anchoring his boat for three days and three nights in the whirlpool.
Breakan accepted the challenge and returned to Norway, where he had three cables made… one of hemp, one of wool and one from maidens’ hair. The women of Norway willingly cut off their hair and plaited the rope. It was believed that the purity and innocence of the maidens would give the rope strength to stand the strain.
Breakan returned and anchored in the whirlpool. On the first day the hemp rope parted, but they survived the night. On the second day, the woollen rope parted in a strong wind, but they survived the night again.
On the last day they set the plaited cable of hair and all went well until a gale of wind broke the rope. The boat was sucked under by the currents and a surviving crewman and Breakan’s dog dragged the body of Breakan ashore – he was buried in the King’s Cave.

24 Frames: Pink Narcissus (James Bidgood, 1971)

What were some specific influences on the film?
Well, it’s always about MGM musicals and all that kind of stuff. And a movie like The Red Shoes, which was at the time such a phenomenon. God, that picture! They tried to make it into a musical, but it bombed, Jule Styne wrote the music, and they tried it, because it’s really such a terribly corny story … and it is so fabulous…. It’s about a girl that’s in a ballet that they do called “The Red Shoes” [with Russian accent], the Russian guy, the director of the ballet “The Red Shoes,” and it’s about a girl who puts on these magic red shoes and then dances to death … cause she can’t take them off. And that’s pretty much … what the movie is about…. She ends up dying in the end, but they still give the ballet but [whispers] with just the shoes!… [gasps] So then he comes out and cries, oh, it’s so fabulous…. But the color! There had never been a movie with color like that. They did such wonderful things, it was like gelatin floating down, like gelatin, oh, like floating down! It was incredible! I don’t know that there is even a decent [print]. I’m sure they let it go to hell, you know, nobody cared about anything like that, nobody thought it was art until it was too late.

James Bidgood, 2006

Peeping Tom: 50th Anniversary Blu-Ray

An instructive example of the use of Lacanian theory to examine film is provided by Parveen Adams in her essay on Michael Powell’s Peeping Tom, which tells the story of a young man, Mark Lewis, who films women as he kills them. The film raises questions about the pleasure of the spectator, since the spectator is placed in a position similar to that of Mark Lewis, who Adams argues is a pervert. Such a comparison between the pleasure of the spectator and the enjoyment of the pervert is certainly not new to film theory; it has even become somewhat of a cliche. However, it is precisely this comparison that Adams objects to, on the grounds that it ‘fails to distinguish between a pleasure and the question of jouissance. Adams argues that while Mark Lewis is (almost) entirely caught up within the perverse circuit of jouissance, the spectator is gradually separated from this scenario by a number of crucial shots in the film which disrupt his/her identitication with the protagonist. The jouissance of the perverse Mark Lewis leads him eventually to his death; the framing of certain key images in the film puts the spectator in quite a different position, a position from which a safe pleasure may be derived.

Key Concepts of Lacanian Psychoanalysis

Blake Edwards (1922 – 2010)

Top-5 coisas a serem agradecidas: 1- O gato mais famoso do cinema por Mr. Orange 2- Parceria com Henry Mancini 3- Peter Sellers versus David Niven 4- Peter Sellers versus George Sanders 5- Andrews & Edwards – um dos casais mais bonitos no quesito diretor/musa.

Walbrook versus Karajan

Karajan conduzindo a platéia. Walbrook conduzindo a platéia *The Battle of the Walzes (Walzerkrieg, Ludwig Berger, 1933) Não posso fazer nada, lembrei do Karajan quando vi essa cena, mas este faz um trabalho de contenção bem mais eficaz.

‘Round Midnight – Red Shoes

In Wayne’s favorite movie, The Red Shoes, the ballerina protagonist, Vicky, couldn’t make the choice between her husband and dancing, between life and art. Her solution was to throw herself in front of a train; she danced herself to death. I asked Wayne how The Red Shoes might have ended differently. He imagined a modern corrective to Vicky’s romantic fatalism, a dancing Buddha character who seemed a little like himself. “The thing with Vicky was that she was a junkie for those red shoes,” he said. “When she was hit by the train, she passed away, but even in passing away, according to the principle of eternal karma, she’s still locked into the curse of the red shoes, still dancing in death, and can’t stop. So maybe here comes another dancer in modern times, tap dancing, and he has his own junkie problems. But he finds a way to overcome his stuff and change poison into medicine, so he can rescue her from the curse. Vicky forfeited her life for art, but this guy saves her when his life becomes bigger than art.”

Footprints: The Life and Music of Wayne Shorter by Michelle Mercer