Movies that are slightly off.
When you talk about "The Swimmer" will you talk about yourself?
Neddy Merrill has been away for most of the Summer. He reappears at a friend's pool. As they talk, someone notices that there are pools spanning the entire valley. He decided to jog from pool to pool to swim the whole valley. As he stops in each pool his interactions tell his life story.
The opening shot pans over luscious green trees to reveal the youthful looking back of a man diving into a rich blue swimming pool. Burt Lancaster emerges out the over end, tanned, lean and defying every bit of his 55 years. He spends every minute of the film wearing nothing but his swimming trunks, looking great and knowing it, an appearance that ripples away as easily as the pools he dives into.
Journeying with Ned through the connecting hills of white upper middle-class suburbia lifts the lid on those who seem to have it all. Broken marriages, secret lovers, racism and shallow parenting lie buried underneath a glittering veneer of expense.
At times it's a strange and surreal approach used…
I just cannot get over how much I love The Swimmer.
Especially the opening.
I remember seeing it for the first time. I could sense that I was in for something special. I just knew I was about to fall madly in love.
The fluidity of that camera!
The lightness of Lancaster’s step that stands in juxtaposition to the strength of his body. He’s old and young at once. There's something curious about his movements, like a boy who’s exploring the last summer of his childhood. A new day has begun, and it is begging to be discovered with all senses.
But something’s looming over those woods, something in the air feels off, a darkness that's following him like the…
As a pointed commentary on "modern living" (b/w some sly scuttlebutt about the gulf between haves and have-nots), as a sympathetic yet unflinching depiction of a man's misspent life, as an embodiment of his fractured delusions, as a cautionary tale about the poisonous allure of nostalgia, as a possibly accidental case of form mirroring function (cf. the mismatched cuts serving to reflect Merrill's addled state of mind), and most definitely as a testament to Burt Lancaster's ability to simultaneously embody virility and vulnerability, this film is 99.99.99% perfect.
I'm not a huge fan of Burt Lancaster. If you were ask me why, I wouldn't really have an answer. He doesn't annoy me, I have no complaints about his acting, he looks okay in swimming trunks(This is off topic, but I'd love to see Lancaster from this film and Kirk Douglas from The Fury (1978) battle it out). I have nothing bad to say about him and, yet, I dunno, I'm just not feeling it.
I say this quite often but for someone who has seen thousands of films, I still have a glaring gap in my viewing. I had not seen The Swimmer before nor did I really have any knowledge about it, apart from my husband telling…
The Swimmer is a film often cited as being 'surreal', yet I've always thought that was a pretty easy catch-all term for a film that is actually not that surreal at all.
It's strange, certainly, but I think that a lot about films made around this era. The late 1960s are a period of film that fascinate me, caught in a semi-limbo between Hays Code restrictions and straining at the leash to portray something more adult and free. The Swimmer feels like that too - sexually expressive but not explicit, taboo teasing but never baiting. It's an odd film that, arguably, fits its time better than it would fit any other time in cinema history.
Any semblance of surreality here…
The Swimmer is a bewitchingly hallucinatory experience, which starts off as a fun adventure and progresses into a character unravelling step by step and pool by pool to the point of disintegration.
Burt Lancaster is magnetic and searing in a phenomenal performance, and pulls off a film spent entirely in his swimming trunks.
Through Lancaster, The Swimmer evolves into a terrible souring of the American dream. A very 60s revelatory experience with an echo that wont leave your mind.
You know, it's always nice to watch a Fellini flick. His movies are always charming and have this unique sense of sophistication - not only the social kind, mind you, but the emotional one as well. All his characters are delightfully socially apt on the outside while at the same time being emotionally complex and somewhat troubled on the inside. The guy had a very unique, pleasant style that elevated him to the top echelons of classy European movie makers. So it came as a little bit of a surprise when American film The Swimmer turned out to be pretty damn close in spirit to a legitimate Fellini.
The Swimmer starts out with freakishly blue eyed, old timey heartthrob Burt…
Typical movie that you have to enter without any prior knowledge. Lancaster is amazing here, his upbeat behavior somehow is just off. Through his strange adventure you will learn why. Proto-Mad Men stuff.
Genius screenplay. Subtle yet bludgeoning.
Frank Perry's screen adaptation of the achingly sad John Cheever short story gets the tone of Cheever's story just right, even if the movie itself doesn't have quite the same impact.
There have been countless strong and powerful films made around the theme of suburban loneliness, and this movie belongs to that genre. There's something so poignant about the idea that someone can exist in a world that's manufactured for the sole purpose of providing its inhabitants with luxury, pleasure and convenience, and still be miserable. You'd think people would have gotten the point by now, and figured out that privilege, wealth and materialism have virtually nothing to do with ultimate happiness, but if our own consumerist culture is any…
Stunningly shot, 60s-as-fuck film, in which white male privilege runs around Connecticut in a speedo.
This review may contain spoilers. I can handle the truth.
A garish, discordant movie made right at the pivot away from Hollywood's gaudy, formulaic and subtext heavy melodramas to the New Hollywood that threw it all away. The Swimmer is deliriously neither and was fated to be a cinematic oddity.
It wasn't surprising to find that the movie went through a couple different directors and was a tense shoot. Every scene feels as though it's been cut and recut in hopes of finding itself--continuity be damned. It plays like a series of half-formed vignettes and dreamed recollections.
Its campiness does a good job of initially distracting from Burt Lancaster's instability, which grows in malevolence from pool to pool. Janice Rule is weirdly introduced as some kind of audience surrogate or…
"If you make-believe hard enough that something is true, then it is true for you."
Exquisite shimmering beauty on the surface, concealing the bottomless darkness below.
Je ne sais pas trop quoi penser de ce film... Il est certes intéressant, mais je ne peux m'empêcher de trouver le personnage au final trop obscur... non seulement on ne sait pas les détails de ce qui s'est passé au cours des quelques années précédents les évènements du film, mais on ne voit pas non plus le passé plus lointain du personnage... Peut-être que ca rendrait le tout convenu, mais ici, j'ai eu de la difficulté a comprendre le comportement du héros, ainsi que ses relations avec les autres personnages, et je ne suis pas certain ou le film voulait trop en venir... Qui sait, sans les problèmes que le film a connu en post-production, ca serait peut-être plus clair...
The delirium of affluence decides to swim home, backyard pool by pool. The reason fences were erected. I'd say he does a lot more running than swimming though.
High-rated movies with very few views. Suggestions are welcome.
The first 1012 films are from The 1,000 Greatest Films list, and maintain the original order. The films that follow…