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  • Il pirata sono io!

    Il pirata sono io!

    Enjoyable, buoyant comedy and pirate adventure starring Erminio Macario. In 1795 a town plans to impress the visiting Viceroy by staging a pirate attack for locals to defeat, only to have actual pirate The Grim Reaper show up and lay wreck to their path to glory. It's mostly a candy store treat, but one's pleasure is moderated by an awful running joke at the expense of a fat woman. It's worth noting too that the film's pleasing escapist palette of pirate adventure romance tropes was almost certainly meant to encourage and resonate with Italian Fascist warmaking.

  • A Wild Hare

    A Wild Hare

    The archetypal Bugs-Elmer cartoon, and it shows. It's all here: "Be very very quiet, I'm hunting wabbits," "What's up, Doc?," "Guess who?," sexual roleplaying implications, and Elmer Fudd turning endearingly inconsolable when faced with the terrifying prospect of having successfully hunted a wabbit. As usual, the implied romantic desire they share in, their screwball tête-à-tête, is interesting insofar as it allows for homosexual and/or transsexual implications but is disturbing insofar as it plays off and reifies an analogy between hunting and dating. Elmer rhyming off female movie stars Bugs might be is the highlight.

Popular reviews

  • Something Good - Negro Kiss

    Something Good - Negro Kiss

    A 2018 addition to the National Film Registry, the earliest known moving picture depicting African-American sexual intimacy, in which a Black man and Black woman joyously kiss. Any Victorian-era film will be notable if it represents Blackness without racist caricature, but this 1898 document is far greater than just something not-bad. Although the Selig company catalogue describes this as a "burlesque" on 1896's popular The Kiss, any potential comic intentions on the part of the white camera-cranker are gloriously disallowed by the sincere affection of the performers. It is beautiful, so beautiful, and their love is contagious.

  • What Happened on Twenty-Third Street, New York City

    What Happened on Twenty-Third Street, New York City

    A woman's skirt shoots up when she walks under the gushing air of a sidewalk grate, fifty-four years before Marilyn's iconic performance in The Seven Year Itch. Only today have I learned the historical significance of this film's title. Why does it happen on Twenty-Third Street? The answer can be found by pairing this film with the 1903 actuality At the Foot of the Flatiron, in which pedestrians clutch their hats and skirts on a windy day on the corner…