All the films from all the editions, including those subsequently removed, presently totalling 1177. An easy way of seeing how…
Last Tango in Paris
Bernardo Bertolucci's Landmark Film
A young Parisian woman begins a sordid affair with a middle-aged American businessman whom lays out ground rules that their clandestine relationship will be based only on sex.
Gives a whole new definition to the phrase 'to butter someone up'
Guess philosophical porn just ain't my thing.
Last Tango in Paris, the infamous psychosexual drama from Bernardo Bertolucci, upset conservatives in 1972 when it came out but is tame by today's standards.
Marlon Brando rents a small apartment and begins an anonymous affair with a much younger Parisian woman (Maria Schneider). His wife's recent suicide has led him to conclude his marriage was a sham built on falsehoods. Determined to separate sex from intimacy (or truth from illusion), Brando insists on total anonymity, which intensifies their liaison and allows them to harbour an idealised notion of one another.
Tango includes two principle sex scenes that are shocking only in terms of Brando's outward aggression toward Schneider (the camera pays much attention to her smooth legs, lolling breasts…
Graphic and uncompromising Bertolucci's masterpiece, not for the faint of heart or easily offended. Marvelous acting and direction make of this an exquisite piece of art to enjoy several times. Lust, passion, intoxicating existentialism and experimental filmmaking is today's strong dish, accompanied by a forbidden, Platonic steamy affair.
Last Tango in Paris tells the story of a 45-year-old American man (Marlon Brando) and a 20-year-old French woman (Maria Schneider) who meet by chance and become involved in a sexual relationship. He demands that they reveal nothing about themselves—not even their names. In their "real" lives away from each other, they are confronted with major life changes. He deals with his wife's death, and she becomes engaged to her young boyfriend (Jean-Pierre Léaud). The more difficult their real lives become, the more they need to be together in their secret apartment where they have no name.
The film was considered sexually explicit and vulgar when it was released in 1972. By today's standards, it contains little that will shock…
For all the controversy apparently surrounding the content in Bertolucci's film, it's surprisingly tame by today's standards. Though the shock of the illicit rendezvous between the two leads may have been replaced by lingering questions regarding whether Paul rapes Jeanne in one or two scenes. Another surprise to me was how un-erotic the film actually was. To me it had always been described as dripping with lust and permeating with pleasure (Pauline Kael's famous review regarding the atmosphere at the premiere screening comes to mind) but to me at least it felt very cold. I could feel the passion emanating from Brando's Paul but not passion of lust but something far rawer and angrier. The scene where he's at his…
How do I even begin to talk about this movie? The high I felt after seeing it has not subsided; I still feel as if I were standing on God’s scalp, my arms outstretched, everything a dazed blur, a colorful whirl. I have never had a more ecstatic experience watching a movie in the theater – and while I am on this note, let me express how grateful I am that there are still theaters which show masterpieces like Bernardo Bertolucci’s “Last Tango in Paris.” Because there is nothing, absolutely nothing, that can ever replace the moment when the lights go down and the screen erupts into life, and the world – with all its paradox, confusion, striving, failure –…
Now I know where Alan Partridge got his phrase "butter my arse" from. All makes sense now.
Brando is terrific and Schneider is hot. That's all you need to know.
It never improves upon its opening scene, though it certainly has its moments. I just can't see myself ever watching this again.
July 2016 Scavenger Hunt
20. A movie mentioned in the book "The Film Club" 2008 by David Gilmour.
My List: letterboxd.com/strangah/list/july-2016-scavenger-hunt-16/
There are definitely some enticing scenes and moments throughout, and Brando is in fine form, but it ultimately falls short for me of anything truly spectacular. It's an interesting look at the appeal of anonymity and the connection you make to another person through just sex and intimacy. The result is very sloppy and all over the place, though.
I am of the mindset that really doesn't see what makes this such a great film. I get that it's pushing boundaries (especially in 1972) and that it's being modern and whatnot, but it's a mishmash of nothingness for the most part.
"I can't remember very many good things"
I really wanted to like this film but I found the majority of it to be asinine and misogynistic, though the performances by Marlon Brando and Maria Schneider are decidedly great.
It's sad but unsurprising to read about some of the dubious dealings on set and mistreatment Schneider underwent in regards to the sex scenes - the infamous one in particular - and it leaves me even less impressed.
This review may contain spoilers. I can handle the truth.
Last Tango in Paris was released in 1972, and is considered a landmark film, as it was intended to usher in a cinematic movement of adult-themed films, the goal of which was not to titillate the audience with sexual imagery, but to deal with sexuality in a mature and reverent fashion. Of course, it wasn’t without a firestorm of controversy, from both feminists and conservative critics, many of which deemed the film pornographic and demeaning. Granted, there are scenes in Bernardo Bertolucci’s film that remain quite potent and disturbing to this day. However, it remains an incredibly powerful character study – complex and rewarding, featuring two unapologetically raw performances from the Marlon Brando and Maria Schneider.
Last Tango in Paris…
Given its reputation for pushing the boundaries of sex scenes in a major motion picture, “Last Tango in Paris” is surprisingly un-erotic; and that’s clearly intentional. The scenes are shot very matter-of-factly. There’s no sexy lighting, coloring, or camera angles, no outlandish locales, positions, or scenarios. Just very straight-forward shots of people fucking on the floor of a mostly empty apartment. It is not the director’s intention to make the viewer feel like a participant in the sex, nor to make him want to be. Instead the sex is presented as though it were part of a documentary, or a medical or psychological study. So if the sex isn't used to titilate, it's used to invoke something else entirely.
I don't know if I have ever had a more overwhelming theatrical experience in my life--to echo Pauline Kael's infamous review, I really think that is the only way this film works the way it did. Had I thrown this on at home, Saturday morning two coffees in, I would have probably fallen asleep halfway through.
There is obviously a LOT going on here-perhaps the understatement of the century-but all I know is that when I walked out, in a haze, I just started aimlessly walking around the streets of Bologna in awe of what I had just seen. Then I got lost. Then I figured it out. At least I think I did.
Complete list. :-(