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Old 06.09.2012, 04:46 PM   #16001
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dr. Eugene Felikson
What exactly is so good about La Dolce Vita? I've never understood it. I hear it praised all the time.

EDIT: serious question

hm let's see the first time i saw it i came home drunk at 3am and it was on tv and i was like "what the fuck is this???" it was the part with the dad and the dancers in the sad cabaret and what happens after.

anyway eventually i saw it in full, i've seen it a bunch of times, i saw it when it was bought and restored by scorsese & it was shown in all its glory at the national gallery of art. it was fucking gorgeous.

anyway, about the movie

first, if you have eyes you'll have to agree at least that the cinematography is delicious. the editing is also perfect enough to be invisible. so thats takes care of that.

now for the story which is what i supposed bored you.

***SPOILER ALERT***

la dolce vita tells a pretty straighforward linear story, which is that of the successive degradation of a sellout who throws away the chance of being an artist in order to chase money and meaningless relationships. he goes from promising writer to journalist to pr sellout.

this happens in a kind of progressive spiritual void-- the church isn't there, philosophy isn't there (his philosopher friend kills himself), his father isn't there, he can find no love, the old nobility is a bunch of inbred degenerates, divorces get celebrated with parties, and when he has a chance to hear again his muse (the little girl at the beach) he quickly abandons her for the noise & racket of "the world". which is why at the end she reappears, remember? and he can't hear her anymore, he walks away with his party friends, and there's a chasm (literally, some sort of formation on the sand) between them. this all works on the images--no subtitles necessary really.

f you look at parallels, claudia cardinale in 81/2 is the same muse figure, the woman who inspires him to make art rather than fuck (his mistress) or feel terrible about himself (his wife). this is almost classic plato. 81/2 is in many ways the same story as la dolce vita, except that this character chose art and is able to find some sort of salvation or escape. by the way, woody allen almost literally ripped that off for deconstructing harry.

now this tale of degeneration is all a pretty clear and obvious narrative and not revolutionary in any sense, you could go back to balzac's "lost illusions" for its sources, or even further, you could look at picaresque literature and find the same themes of progressive corruption of its hero--even going back to the satyricon. still, the way he does it is wonderful and 50+ years after he made it still relevant to our media-centric time of tmz and perez hilton.

give it another shot if you can or maybe watch it with the commentary on.

but anyway, hm, the problem i think you have relating is that the world where marcello ends is the world where you begin-- the world of kim kardashian and jerry springer and nihilism. fellini saw this era coming on and his vision turned out pretty prophetic, but looking back with no reference to a world that had meaning you might not get a sense of anything lost and therefore not see the tragedy.
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Old 06.09.2012, 08:09 PM   #16002
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dr. Eugene Felikson
What exactly is so good about La Dolce Vita? I've never understood it. I hear it praised all the time.

EDIT: serious question

Don't worry about it. Have you seen Chris Morris' Nathan Barley? There's a scene in it where the hero, a journalist for a style mag, finally sees this empty self congratulating hipster world that he's a part of, for what it is. He then announces that 'the idiots are winning' and has a kind of nervous breakdown. You think he's gonna rebel against it all but he ultimately just joins them. That's pretty much La Dolce Vita's message.

And in a way, that's why La Dolce Vita, more than almost any other art movie I can think of, has endured so well. Marcello Mastroianni's character remains a kind of contemporary archetype: relateable to anyone who's ever found themselves in a scene they think is drowning their true potential but who lacks the drive or sense of purpose to move beyond it. It's two and a half hours of someone on SYG announcing that this place is a waste of time and that they're leaving, only to come back a week later feeling a little bit disgusted with themselves. Read el symbols response again and apply it to this place. Almost uncanny. But where's the girl on the beach?

 
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Old 06.09.2012, 11:05 PM   #16003
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dr. Eugene Felikson
How is this?

I've always found Svankmajer's stuff to be really rad.

i really enjoyed little otik. i have seen a few of his shorts as well as alice. this is definitely a bizarre film, but also much more "normal than the other things of his that i have seen. i really like the fairy tale quality to it. i would definitely see it again.
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Old 06.10.2012, 08:10 AM   #16004
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Quote:
Originally Posted by !@#$%!

la dolce vita tells a pretty straighforward linear story

The word "basic," I believe, was also used. "Simple," maybe.

Then why is it so fucking long? And why does 8 1/2 feel just as long? Do films about self-indulgent people need to be so damned self-indulgent?

I Vitelloni and Nights of Cabiria are my two favs. I'm sure they bore a lot of viewers, but La Dolce Vita bores me, so there you go. And the last time I watched 8 1/2, I fast-forwarded to the bordello scene (which is still mighty impressive) and skipped the rest.

But then, Bergman is my favorite director. I'm sure his stuff bores most people to tears, but I find damn near every frame a thrill. To each their own.
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Old 06.10.2012, 09:08 AM   #16005
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Quote:
Originally Posted by evollove
The word "basic," I believe, was also used. "Simple," maybe.


???

i'm sure synonyms happen.

Quote:
Originally Posted by evollove
Then why is it so fucking long?


I'd ask Fellini, but he's dead.

But if you ask me why it goes over and meanders so much, i'd say it's because it's concerned not so much with its hero but also the world around him. so each "episode" covers something different-- religion, the cult of celebrity, the failure of philosophy, the failure of the family, etc. it's a big complicated world and fellini dared to take on the challenge of surveying it.

Quote:
Originally Posted by evollove
And why does 8 1/2 feel just as long?


I suppose it's cuz you don't like it? Just a guess. Einstein had some ideas about this.

Quote:
Originally Posted by evollove
Do films about self-indulgent people need to be so damned self-indulgent?


you don't have to like these movies, but "self-indulgent"? you mean it's wrong of a director to pursue teh themes they like? i don't understand the accusation. it's art, you know? "self-indulgent" by definition.

also: ranting on the internet about movies instead of saving hungry children? self-indulgent.

but to accuse la dolce vita of being self-indulgent just because it's long is an error in judgment. the movie is about all sorts of things going on in society and the world, it's almost a documentary, it's concerned with the things that surround us, so no, it's not so much about "self" or little personal obsessions, which is why it endures so well.

Quote:
Originally Posted by evollove
I Vitelloni and Nights of Cabiria are my two favs.


great stuff

Quote:
Originally Posted by evollove
I'm sure they bore a lot of viewers,


i'm sure. it's impossible for everyone to please everyone else all the time.

Quote:
Originally Posted by evollove
but La Dolce Vita bores me, so there you go.
wait, what do i have to do with your boredom? and why does this matter?

Quote:
Originally Posted by evollove
And the last time I watched 8 1/2, I fast-forwarded to the bordello scene (which is still mighty impressive) and skipped the rest.

and this is relevant because...?

Quote:
Originally Posted by evollove
But then, Bergman is my favorite director.


congrats are in order?

Quote:
Originally Posted by evollove
I'm sure his stuff bores most people to tears, but I find damn near every frame a thrill.

yes, but what does this have to do with la dolce vita or why that movie is great, regardless of your own personal tastes? something can be great and boring at the same time. farming, for example. or the fucking illiad and its unending catalogs.

Quote:
Originally Posted by evollove
To each their own.

of course. but so?

felikson asked a serious question so i gave him a serious answer. my post above wasn't written for you, but if you feel otherwise i can assure you those feelings are misguided.

anyway, you still could refute what i'm telling him and argue that la dolce vita is not great, or not that important, but doing so with the sole argument that it bores you personally is way more self-indulgent than la dolce vita itself could ever be. yes? yes.
 
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Old 06.10.2012, 09:53 AM   #16006
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This is too easy.

EDIT: Ok. Fine. I'll take you seriously.

I, like you, was expressing an opinion. That's it. Why take it so personal? My gripe was with Fel, not you. Geez. Chill out. Anyway, none of this stuff matters in the least.

And I'm sure Dr. F appreciated your response. It was well thought out. I doubt he understood it, but that's his fault and another matter entirely.

Hug?
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Old 06.10.2012, 10:17 AM   #16007
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Quote:
Originally Posted by evollove
This is too easy.

EDIT: Ok. Fine. I'll take you seriously.

I, like you, was expressing an opinion. That's it. Why take it so personal? My gripe was with Fel, not you. Geez. Chill out. Anyway, none of this stuff matters in the least.

And I'm sure Dr. F appreciated your response. It was well thought out. I doubt he understood it, but that's his fault and another matter entirely.

Hug?

lolol okay sure, but no assgrab.

i though you had taken offense at my commentary or something. i didn't get that you were arguing him felixon via my post. anyway, shit happens, sorry for the misunderstanding.

i'll have to take issue with "i doubt he understood it" though. i like felixon, which is why i took time to write him an explain, and i don't want to get in the middle of your fight if you're having one.

but yeah, peace and love and all that shit, of course. i've said this here before but i don't care so much about agreements/disagreements as i care about people who give enough of a shit about movies to take time to discuss them.
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Old 06.10.2012, 10:32 AM   #16008
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Cool, etc.

This is interesting. My issue with Dr. F--who may very well be a nice fellow in "real life"--is that he wants to be a filmmaker, and his biggest influences are Buffy and comic books. The world doesn't need yet another "filmmaker" like that.

Huh. I guess that means I care too.
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Old 06.10.2012, 10:46 AM   #16009
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alright but felixson doesn't "wanna be" a filmmaker, he is one already. as for influences, we all grow up in our ow time & place and-- buffy rules man!! haha. plus there are some great comic books. look, chaplin came out of vaudeville

okay, the game is ON! gotta go pursue moar hi culture on tv
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Old 06.10.2012, 11:26 AM   #16010
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Murmer99

Watch god bless america or kill yourself.

--I'll give you a hug because a few pages back I recommended that very movie.

--Chaplin was a preachy ballerina. Keaton was the real genius.

--I don't care about culture, critics, Criterion or the cults that have classics.
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Old 06.10.2012, 11:55 AM   #16011
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Quote:
Originally Posted by evollove
--I don't care about culture, critics, Criterion or the cults that have classics.

i meant the fútbol game! i didn't even get to finish my post cuz transmission had started.

modern times = teh win
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Old 06.10.2012, 12:22 PM   #16012
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Never seen this one before actually, and I'm a bit a shamed for it, but I saw it the other day and I think it was fuckin super!
4/5.
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Old 06.10.2012, 02:22 PM   #16013
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Old 06.10.2012, 02:41 PM   #16014
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dr. Eugene Felikson

 
"
I've never understood why so many people hate this movie. The jokes are funny, Howard is convincing, the cast is wonderful (Lea Thompson, Jeffrey Jones, and Tim Robbins), the crude 80's CGI is great, and the stop-motion animation towards the end is even more impressive.

Every time I watch this movie, I enjoy it. No matter how old I am. This has the same amount of charm as the first Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle movie, except with a raunchier sense of humor.

9/10
One of the most disturbing fucking movies EVER.
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Old 06.10.2012, 07:58 PM   #16015
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Accattone

I've probably already given my views about this elsewhere on the thread, as I tend to watch it quite a lot. It's increasingly becoming the film I go to first when I feel like wallowing in that whole romanticised low-life thing for a bit. It's pure cultural tourism on my part, and highly dubious if I reflect on it but, whether it's Accattone, Mean Streets (which is really Accattone's American equivalent) or some uber deadbeat Paul Morrissey movie, I just can't help myself.

And Franco Citti really did have one of the best, most beautiful faces in all of cinema.

 


It's a shame that so many people only know Pasolini through Salo - a film that I really don't like at all.
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Old 06.11.2012, 02:10 AM   #16016
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Quote:
Originally Posted by demonrail666
I don't think there's anything particularly personal behind the ending, besides Lucas likely having had schoolfriends who graduated and then went straight off to Vietnam. In that sense I took it as one of those 'end of innocence' stories, and was maybe the key film in ushering in a kind of teen nostalgia (people like Corman had always focused on contemporary youth cults). It seemed to solidify a kind of cult-of-innocence around that whole early RnR era, that obviously inspired later films like Grease, Peggy Sue Got Married, Porky's and the first Back to the Future or TV shows like Happy Days and The Wonder Years.

It also gets a lot of credit for its innovative approach to soundtracks, using nothing but pre-recorded pop music. That was apparently a big influence on Scorsese (although Scorsese argues it was Kenneth Anger's Scorpio Rising), as well as the way scenes were kind of synchronised to the music, without the film being a bona fide musical. (Again, Scorpio Rising did it first but more people obviously saw American Graffiti.)

I think AG is a massive film on so many levels: ushering in an entire 50s nostalgia industry that still remains; translating previously 'underground' ideas into viable mainstream ones; etc.


About the ending - Oh. I guess that makes sense. I still don't really like that part though. It was off-putting and distracted me from the feelings the narration was supposed to provide.

Either way, I loved the film in a big, bad way. It was one of those rides where I felt like EVERYONE must be able to enjoy this. Sorta like The Breakfast Club, or A Christmas Story.

I was mainly surprised by just how modern the film felt. I think that's why I kept drawing the big Linklater comparison. (Am I alone on that one?) The use of pop music helped, I didn't even really think about that, I've grown so accustomed. Funny theory about Scorsese; Anger is much hipper to reference than Lucas, after all.

Still have to watch THX 1138. Maybe tonight or tomorrow. That looks astonishing. I wsh Lucas would step out of his shell and try something fresh again for a change. He's super-talented behind the scenes.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Murmer99

it's also kind of cool how your favorite filmmaker of all time apparently is John Waters... and mine is David Lynch. The story is that Eraserhead received a larger audience when John Waters persistently told people to go see it, instead of promoting his own film at the time. Great guy, even if at times he makes me want to puke.


Ha! I'd never heard that before. That's pretty neat. Eraserhead's great - easily my favorite from Lynch. One of my favorite films of all time, actually. I don't think he'll ever be able to top it.

Quote:
Originally Posted by !@#$%!
but anyway, hm, the problem i think you have relating is that the world where marcello ends is the world where you begin-- the world of kim kardashian and jerry springer and nihilism. fellini saw this era coming on and his vision turned out pretty prophetic, but looking back with no reference to a world that had meaning you might not get a sense of anything lost and therefore not see the tragedy.


Yeah, I must've missed the boat on that one. I'm definitely one who embraces pop culture though. Maybe not so much - modern pop culture - but I still don't think the message of this film is for me. I'm materialistic as fuck, and I like it that way. Your wording with that post was serene, though.



Quote:
Originally Posted by demonrail666
Don't worry about it. Have you seen Chris Morris' Nathan Barley? There's a scene in it where the hero, a journalist for a style mag, finally sees this empty self congratulating hipster world that he's a part of, for what it is. He then announces that 'the idiots are winning' and has a kind of nervous breakdown. You think he's gonna rebel against it all but he ultimately just joins them. That's pretty much La Dolce Vita's message.

And in a way, that's why La Dolce Vita, more than almost any other art movie I can think of, has endured so well. Marcello Mastroianni's character remains a kind of contemporary archetype: relateable to anyone who's ever found themselves in a scene they think is drowning their true potential but who lacks the drive or sense of purpose to move beyond it. It's two and a half hours of someone on SYG announcing that this place is a waste of time and that they're leaving, only to come back a week later feeling a little bit disgusted with themselves. Read el symbols response again and apply it to this place. Almost uncanny. But where's the girl on the beach?





 


Maybe I'll give this one another shot with new eyes. Thanks guys.
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Old 06.11.2012, 05:08 AM   #16017
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Originally Posted by demonrail666
Yeah, I've also got a thing for 70s urban dereliction. And I know what you mean when you talk about them as sort of 'landscape films'. There's a specific atmosphere to those settings.

I remember as a teenager going to the Scala in Kings Cross, when that area was still really sleazy. I'd never seen a prostitute or a junky before I went to Kings Cross and I'd always love coming out of the cinema after watching something like Maniac or Vigilante to see my own equivalent on the walk back to the station. It's criminal how clean Kings Cross now looks. Along with Soho it used to be my favourite part of London. (Soho's another area that's had much of its soul polished out of it now. Vegetarian options at the Coach & Horses?!?)

I was in Kings Cross recently and it's progressively being turned into John Carpenter's worst nightmare. I like the interiors of The Guardian's building, which contain a pretty sweet auditorium and art gallery, but you're right, no respectable low-life would hang around in that area now. Plus, I got this feeling that parts of the scenery have been bitten off by an enormous entrepreneurial mouth.

I re-watched Gary Oldman’s ‘’Nil by Mouth’’ in honour of your earlier mention of it on this thread. This movie is a perennial 10/10 movie for me and it gets better with every watch. I rank it alongside Larry Peerce’s ‘’The Incident’’ as one of my favourite dealing with the more unpleasant things in life. I’ve also found an old Gary Oldman interview, recently, where he talks about the film and explains how it’s one he had to make, particularly because you have movies like ‘’Leaving Las Vegas’’ where the alcoholic seems like he’s been pampered too much to really represent the real effects of rampant alcohol abuse on your body and your relationships with others. In the same interview I was happy to find out that he seems to feel the same sort of irritation for Tarantino’s work as me. You see, I don’t have a problem watching ‘’Pulp Fiction’’ or ‘’Kill Bill’’ for pure entertainment, it’s the sort of geekery they transude that gets me going. I am aware his work is meant to be viewed as a cartoonish regurgitation of his film-watching habits, and with that in mind I can agree that he’s alright as a director. When you hear clueless bloke after clueless bloke proclaiming him the biggest thing that happened to cinema for the umpteenth time though, that’s when you wish he didn’t get the sort of recognition and success he normally gets. This also explains my snide remark towards him when I mentioned Mario Bava’s ‘’Rabid Dogs’’, who’s one of his favourite directors, it seems.

Other movies I watched recently include Mark L. Lester’s ‘’Class of 1984’’. I always liked this film and it was good re-watching it for the first time in years. Timothy Van Patten is excellent as the psychotic kid who leads the gang of little shits making the school a dump to work in for teacher Mr Norris. For some reason I remembered it being filmed in a much grittier style. I think that is probably because the first time I’ve seen it I was 11 or 12 years old, so it must have had a more dramatic impact on me then.
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Old 06.11.2012, 07:57 AM   #16018
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Old 06.11.2012, 08:04 AM   #16019
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And, to bring down the level of intellect:

 


I was addicted to these films as a kid. And as cheesy as this was, I am still terrified by it even now. Dead kids on tricycles ~shivers~
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Old 06.11.2012, 08:14 AM   #16020
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I can't recall if it's 3 or 4 in which puppet strings are ripped out of this suicidal kid's arms. Awesome.
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