Machismo faces the Holocaust: My Blu-ray review of Seven Beauties

Lina Wertmüller's 1975 masterpiece, Seven Beauties, is a Holocaust film (with no recognizably Jewish characters), an examination of Italian machismo, and a witheringly sad and disturbing drama. And at times, it becomes a very funny slapstick comedy. Giancarlo Giannini stars as Pasqualino, a charming but somewhat dense egomaniac. He lives in Naples with his mother … Continue reading Machismo faces the Holocaust: My Blu-ray review of Seven Beauties

Movies I’ve Recently Seen: Stalker, Bad Education, Bardelys the Magnificent, & Carry on Cleo

Four more films that are new to me. As usual, I'm sorting them by quality. A Stalker (1979), Filmstruck This slow, strange, allegorical fantasy from the great Andrei Tarkovsky gets under your skin. A guide, called a stalker, takes two other men on a journey into a strange place called The Zone. We never find out … Continue reading Movies I’ve Recently Seen: Stalker, Bad Education, Bardelys the Magnificent, & Carry on Cleo

Italian comedy & American tragedy: Friday night at the Pacific Film Archive

My wife and I attended two very different films last night (Friday night) at the Pacific Film Archive. One was a 1963, Italian satire on consumerism that is only now being released in the States. The other was an American classic. Both movies recently enjoyed fine digital restorations. Both were screened from DCPs. We sat … Continue reading Italian comedy & American tragedy: Friday night at the Pacific Film Archive

Movies I’ve Recently Seen: The Graduate, Samurai Rebellion, Boudu Saved from Drowning, & Knightriders

A few more movies that I've seen recently. A The Graduate (1967), FilmStruck I've seen this classic romantic comedy many times, but this recent viewing brought me new respect for the picture. The revolutionary staging and camerawork wasn't just art for art's sake; it sets the mood and heightens the characters. Consider the opening credits, with … Continue reading Movies I’ve Recently Seen: The Graduate, Samurai Rebellion, Boudu Saved from Drowning, & Knightriders