four films to take your breath away ~ 1
from the early years of Vimeo: skateboarders on an afternoon in the Berkeley hills, conjuring Steve McQueen.
four films to take your breath away ~ 3
Two sisters; a northern ballad making it’s way thru the Victorian world, taken up by a French symbolist poet, shadowed by Eisenstein & modernism, placed in the surroundings of Atget and Josef Sudek. That’s just the beginning of the astonishment contained (not even contained) by this film.
youtu.be/kj2Kno5jTEo (2nd soundtrack)
four films to take your breath away ~ 4
This will always be the most revolutionary movie.
I don’t know that Dziga would approve of all the music on this version - sometimes it overwhelms the images, doesn’t let them do the work he (& his wife, who endlessly edited) wanted them to do on their own. You can turn it down if it gets to be too much.
a very nice French documentary - a long interview, essentially - w Billy Wilder, who was without a doubt one of the most entertaining characters in the whole history of cinema. Fortunately he was interviewed many, many times.
Damien Chazelle has re-teamed with Emma Stone for his upcoming film “Babylon”
& in one of the more inspired casting ideas in Hollywood-portraying-Hollywood history , Emma plays Clara Bow. Here’s a telling of Clara’s story (much of which is awfully harrowing, & this doc not the best at the fortune shifts, I’d say)
Also included are some highlights from her films -
Anticipating Bradley Cooper’s very ambitious, high-wire project on Leonard Bernstein, here’s a link to the American Masters documentary on Lenny’s remarkable life
Bradley is both starring in and directing; basically swinging for the fences in the most Bernstein-esque way possible, which is why I’m entirely rooting for him & hoping this is a great success.
Lenny triumphant / conducting Candide for young people at Carnegie Hall -
Letterboxd has a poster for this excellent making-of documentary by the BBC - just put up the YouTube link a few weeks ago & I had no idea there was a separate poster, so here it is again (the link may come down at any minute - YouTube is getting extreeeemely serious about becoming a subscription service, so it’s no more free riders / no more mr. nice guy with the copyright violations.)
~ 👇 ~
For more on the…
note - I’ve had to requisition the title card above, from an old French short film or there would be no way of listing the documentary below w the exact same title. Sorry.
A love letter to the French New Wave, made in 1992 for Channel 4, & uploaded here (thx to countzorg) -
Lots of memories from the first generation of cinemania. Truffaut and Godard and Chabrol speak, along w some of the Americans they inspired.
Godard and Truffaut’s very early, very New Wave collaboration, “A Story of Water” -
Posting this for a recent upload to YouTube of a long, not-so-recent, George Lucas “making of..” interview about Star Wars. There have been many of these, but this one is more entertaining than most - George is funnier than I’ve seen him before, AND he talks about the Special Edition - take that haters.
Chris Nolan does the interview, with an audience of young directors & film students:
Bonus: Alec Guiness, just after Star Wars opened in England -
West Side Stories / the Making of a Classic
Another posting for the story behind a film (& the show) - this BBC documentary on how both came about -
Don’t take too seriously the early quote: “...for the first time, we’ll hear the story of..,” as no Broadway tale has been told so often - in memoirs by Arthur Laurents, and Steve Sondheim, in every bio ever done on Bernstein or Jerome Robbins, in every panel show with…
A tribute & the ongoing voting rights battle -
“Eyes On the Prize,” the documentary series is free on Kanopy here - www.kanopy.com/product/eyes-prize. The most wide-ranging & well received history of the time ever made.
More stories from the Civil Rights movement, and documentaries about writers, musicians, & leaders, are on this chronological US history/culture list of films running from the ‘40s to the ‘70s -