Decade: 1960s

TIFF 2012 – Day 4

Like Someone in Love (Kiarostami), Far from Vietnam, Tower (Radwanski), and August and After (Dorsky).

Vivre sa vie (1961)

Dir. by Jean-luc Godard I’ve been an occasional participant in the Arts & Faith discussion forum for nearly a decade. They recently polled members to determine a Top 100 film list, and the results are notable. In previous incarnations, we used the vague criterion, “spiritually significant,” to determine what did and did not belong on […]

Godard ’66-’67

Over the last few weeks I’ve watched for the first time the five features that followed Pierrot le Fou, all of them released in 1966 and 1967.

The Moviegoer (1962)

If you’re reading this in the future — say, you’ve wandered here via some poof of Google magic — you should know that if I were to turn on my television right now (now being the afternoon of September 2, 2005), I’d flip past image after image after image of destruction, violence, and misery.

Fallen Creatures in a Fallen World: The Films of John Cassavetes

This essay was originally published at Sojourners.

God Rest His Soul

iTunes just landed on “God Rest His Soul” by The 31st of February, which was a happy coincidence given the content of yesterday’s post. Recorded in 1968, it’s a beautiful prayer for Martin Luther King, Jr., sung by Greg Allman of all people.

Arthur Miller, Then and Now

No new Cine Club notes this week, as we decided spontaneously last night (and with mixed results) to watch John Huston’s The Misfits (1961). I love parts of the film — Thelma Ritter’s jokes and Montgomery Clift’s performance, in particular — and I think it’s a fascinating film to talk about.

Random Musings . . .

On some recent viewings . . . Shame (Bergman, 1968) — Liv Ullmann and Max von Sydow star as Eva and Jan Rosenberg, cultured musicians who escape to a rural island when their orchestra is shut down during a war. Their new, more simple life as farmers is soon interrupted when their home is invaded, […]

Hour of the Wolf (1968)

Hour of the Wolf is Ingmar Bergman’s vampire film. Let me repeat that: Hour of the Wolf (1968) is Ingmar Bergman’s vampire film.

America

“America” will always be my favorite Paul Simon song. There’s something so beautifully melancholy about the chorus.

Great Directors: Hal Ashby

This essay was originally published at Senses of Cinema.

Ivan’s Childhood (1962)

Kholin’s and Masha’s encounter is a desperate act of human contact, but it’s also vaguely degrading; it’s a moment of near transcendent delight, but it’s one that feels debased and compromised. I can’t make sense of it, really, though I feel compelled to, which is probably why Ivan’s Childhood is one of the few war films that I return to with any frequency.

A Few Words Upon Discovering Cassavetes

John Cassevetes is my latest obsession. On a whim, I recently picked up a used copy of Faces, the story of Dicky and Maria Forst’s disastrous attempts to find peace and companionship outside of their loveless marriage. Shot entirely in stark, high-contrast black-and-white, and featuring Cassevetes’s trademark dialogue, Faces feels at times like a documentary — voyeuristic, discomforting, and brutally real.

Through a Glass Darkly (1961)

What Bergman does get absolutely right in Through a Glass Darkly, though, is the very real horror of the existential crisis, the moment when Camus’s Sisyphus pauses, watching his stone roll once again down the mountain.

The Culture of the Cold War (1991)

The Culture of the Cold War is divided into chapter-long studies of the major voices of popular culture, each of which, according to Whitfield, reflected and contributed to the polarity that characterized so much of the 1950s.

La Notte (1960)

Like Edward Hopper, Antonioni composes the frame with his heroine in the lower right corner, alienating her completely from her surroundings.

Breathless (1960)

Godard caused a sensation forty years ago with this, his first film, by not only tearing down cinematic and narrative conventions, but by doing so with a sly, mocking wink to his audience.

Another Country (1962)

Baldwin is so determined to explode the intersections of race, gender, and sexuality that he makes a fatal mistake: instead of being particularly insightful or even shocking, Another Country is preachy, sentimental, and, worst of all, boring.

Winter Light (1963)

A crisis of faith, however, is a process, an on-going debate that can often seem frustratingly one-sided. Reducing such a debate to a simple question and an even simpler answer — as often happens both in the movies and the Church — only trivializes it.

My Night at Maud’s (1969)

Jean-Louis, a young engineer, spies his ideal woman at Sunday Mass. Francoise is young, attractive, blonde, and, most importantly, a practicing Catholic. Before they have even met, Jean-Louis determines that Francoise will be his wife.

New Seeds of Contemplation (1961)

Like “Making Peace,” the Denise Levertov poem that inspired this site, Thomas Merton’s New Seeds of Contemplation is concerned with the destructive influences of greed, superficiality, and passivity on our hectic, disjointed lives.