Thursday, 31 May 2012
Saturday, 26 May 2012
An academic piece.
Amidst the visual and narrative sprawl of Peter Weir’s 1981 film Gallipoli, the sequence in which the film’s heroes Archy (Mark Lee) and Frank (Mel Gibson) spend a brief interlude in the house of a pastoralist family after their gruelling trek across a vast salt lake, stands out in spite of its brevity for several pointed reasons. On a narrative level, this sequence contributes to the forward motion of the story, marking the point in which Frank decides to join the army along with Archy, thus placing him on the same trajectory as his new friend, directed inexorably towards Anzac Bay. It is also an islet of compressed and efficient screenwriting and directing by David Williamson and Weir, as the sequence contributes not only characterisation, as aspects of Archy and Frank’s burgeoning friendship and individual expectations are examined, but also the engagement with the historical context and underlying social, gender, and ideological presumptions which fill out the film’s self-mythologising bent. Gallipoli actively seeks to engage with and transmit a specific national image of the past and, by implication, of the present and future, through its employment of such mythology. This sequence presents, in miniature, a cross-section of the film’s version of the epoch and its society, creating a carefully woven tapestry of psychological, physical, and social cues, which help Weir in his attempt to capture “the burning centre that had made Gallipoli a legend.”
Monday, 21 May 2012
Saturday, 19 May 2012
Silken scribe Sheila O'Malley, she of the Sheila Variations, is fascinated by the antiheroism of Cary Grant's Devlin in Notorious...
...and Jill Blake of The Cinementals has also seen Notorious, except this time at a theatrical showing at the College of Art and Design in Savannah, GA, which is cool beyond all reason, although the projection left something to be desired.
Oh, and Jill, you are the winner of Friday's donor draw - congratulations.
And a very (very) late contribution from Noel Vera at Critic After Dark!
Friday, 18 May 2012
FLASH: Thursday's Lucky Draw winner was Thomas Bolda! Congratulations, Thomas.
The nefarious mastermind Jaime Grijalba of Exodus 8:2 considers the proliferating similarities between the visuals of Psycho and episodes of Alfred Hitchcock Presents.
Speaking of which, Darren at the mOvie blog continues his exploratory reports on episodes of that seminal show, with "A Dip In The Pool", in which the Master collaborated with another hero of a dark and wicked wit, Roald Dahl. And sorry about that last link Darren: html is the devil's work.
Astounding all, the wondrous and waggish Laura attacks from her not-so-secret base at Laura's Miscellaneous Musings to consider Rope, a recent conquest in her efforts to topple the Hitchcock canon.
Not to be outdone, Matthew of The Chiarascuro Coalition sings of the tragedy of poor Margaret, the crofter's wife who makes The 39 Steps an indelibly darker and richer experience...
...whilst W. B. Kelso returns to life just when everyone throught he was dead, with the last of his series showcasing vintage ads and articles, with one of Hitchcock's original obituaries at Scenes From The Morgue, and a commentary on the trailer for Frenzy at Micro-Brewed Reviews...
At Memories of the Future, intrepid voyager through time, space, and mind Jesse Ataide investigates a little case of Suspicion...
...whilst esco 20, aka he who is By Film Possessed, takes a deep, deep dive into Shadow of a Doubt.
The dashingly dextrous disseminator of Dubai, no dubiety, aka Hind Mezaina (see, that's what you get when you encourage me) wraps up a week of wonders at The Cineaste by showcasing a interview with Hitchcock on the television show Monitor, from 1964. A must-watch for Hitch fans.
The indefatigable crew at Limerwrecks come to the end of their journey but not before offering more of what they do best: Jim "Norm Knott" Siergey composes upon a theme of Alfred Hitchcock Presents, and Hilary "Surly Hack" Barta sounds off and rounds off.
...and David Cairns contributes his own lines as well as links over at Shadowplay.
The great and all-seeing Ed Howard brings his epic trek through early Hitchcock to an end with the original The Man Who Knew Too Much at Only The Cinema.
Brian Doan at Bubblegum Aesthetics comes through with a piece that boils the Hitchcock touch down to essentials.
Meanwhile, at Hell on Frisco Bay, a whole other Brian speaks of the NFPF, the rise of digitalisation in cinema, and film festivals showing newly restored films he's going to be attending, which I suspect he wrote purely for the purpose of making me feel insanely jealous...
...and at 21 Essays, Lee Price is celebrating concluding an awesome series of posts with a sixth that ties together Hitchcock, Blackmail, the MacGuffin, Michael Powell, and Alma Reville in a great big cinephile slashfic. Seriously, kudos, Lee.
Strictly Vintage Hollywood presents an approximation of Hitchcock's second feature and the only one of his films that is considered lost, the elusive The Mountain Eagle.
The sartorially splendiferous Stacia of She Blogged By Night is another hypnotised by the seductive sway of Rope...
...and Adam Batty at Hope Lies at 24 Frames Per Second joins the ranks peering into the shadows of Shadow of a Doubt; and that site's Hitchcock-a-thon will continue throughout the weekend, like those guests who just won't leave after a party's over, but they're so much fun to have around you just can't kick them out...
...but Marc Edward Heuck of The Projector Has Been Drinking has chosen to celebrate Hitch's showman side, as the master of marketing.
At Silent London, Pamela Hutchinson naturally has the silents of Londoner Hitchcock on her mind, in specific his actual debut as director, The Pleasure Garden.
At U.S. Intellectual History, Ray Hiberski discusses Notorious.
Strictly Vintage Hollywood, not satisfied with rocking our world all week, offers up Mary Mallory's glance at another Graham Cutts and Alfred Hitchcock collaboration, The Passionate Adventure, a project that first brought Hitch into the orbit of the Selznick clan...
...and Sean Gilman brings it home with a glass of Champagne - that is, Hitch's 1928 silent film - at The End of Cinema.
At John McElwee's Greenbriar Picture Shows, part two of a study of the impact made by The 39 Steps in the US upon first release, marking the beginning of Hitchcock's arrival as an international filmmaker...
...and at Cinema Sight, they rage, rage against the dying of the light with two last day posts, as the crew rounds off their top ten of Hitchcock's films with their individual picks for Hitch's absolute best, but you'll have to click to see what they are! And Peter J. Patrick discusses Hitchcock's way with actors, moving beyond that "actors are cattle" jive to study how well he handled stars and got them to play against type. Thanks for all, guys.
KC, not the one with the Sunshine Band but of the far more awesome Classic Movies, has collected together a formidable set of links to pieces on Hitchcock around the web at the moment, including one piece that presents the irresistable what-if notion of Ian Fleming's interest in getting Hitchcock to direct the aborted James Bond film that was later transmuted in Thunderball, and which caused Fleming so much legal heartache.
And in true Hitchcock style, we return to where it all began, as Ferdy on Films hosts guest writer Paroma Chatterjee and her piece on Suspicion.
High Def Digest wraps up that site's buffet of Hitchcock posts for the blogathon with David Krauss' look at Hitch's fondness for one-word titles.
Adam Zanzie of Icebox Movies finally gets his backside around to contributing (I kid 'cause I love, Adam) as he jumps into Hitchcock's visually innovative The Ring, and finds it a mixed experience.
At Shadowplay, David Cairns continues to stun through his dedication in offering a study in Hitchcock's use of vertigo-inducing high and overhead camera angles and aerial shots.
Darren Mooney concludes his survey of the trove of riches that are the episodes of Alfred Hitchcock Presents at the mOvie blog, with a look at "The Horse Player". All hail Darren!
At Moving Image Achive News, the team there have pitched in to raise consciousness of the blogathon and its purpose, and Caylin Smith takes a look at the film all this fuss is about - The White Shadow. They've also posted a piece on their Facebook page.
At They Live By Night, the mysterious beast whose rampant cinephilia is feared by all bloggers known as Bilge Ebiri writes about perhaps the most atypical and least-known film in Hitchcock's oeuvre, Waltzes From Vienna, and finds the signs of Hitch's grasp on cinematic rhythm glimmering through the costume drama trappings so interesting he wonders if Hitch wasn't a maker of musicals all along...
...and Joe Thompson of The Pneumatic Rolling-Sphere Carrier Delusion hits the end of his drive through Hitchcock-related historical ephemera at 100 MPH, as he takes a leaf through 1933's The World Film Encyclopedia and looks at the entries on Hitchcock, Cutts, and the other neglected heroes of The White Shadow. That's some class scholarship, Joe.
And the charming young Miss Rachel, who is seen so often parading the sunny boulevards holding aloft her cream-coloured light-deflecting mantle that she is now widely referred to by the hoi-polloi as The Girl with the White Parasol, expounds with solicitous delicacy upon the subject of one Miss Ingrid Bergman, who starred in some of those new talking pictures directed by that frightful Mr Hitchcock, and especially one called Notorious, which sounds, well, notorious, but we would not know, as we avoid such vulgar pastimes.
At Kine Artefacts, the eliptically effusive Ellie explores the problems of working with old nitrate film, that delicate, dangerous and endangered material upon which the entire legacy of early movies rests, and celebrates the skill of those who take it upon themselves to save it and store it.
Old salt Buckey Grimm wraps up his series on places where films are stored and restored at Mindless Meanderings with a brief but charming photographic paean to the little workshops where the archivists labour.
And roaring out of times still to come, riding upon a wave of curved space, The Futurist! pauses on adventures only long enough to hurl us his piece on Family Plot, Hitchcock's very last movie, which is darned apt for the last hours of our last day.
Thursday, 17 May 2012
First, please join me in a hearty cry of thanks for Marilyn at Ferdy on Films and Farran at Self-Styled Siren for their ceaseless labour and attentiveness over the past four days. And an equally hearty cheer for everybody who's contributed the time and effort necessary to give unto us this collection of truly excellent posts - you crazy kids!
And now please remember that as great as the enthusiasm we see in all these posts is, and worthy in and of itself, this Blogathon has a serious purpose, to raise money to give Graham Cutts’ The White Shadow the showcasing it deserves for the enjoyment of film fans all over the internet. So please, donate. For the Love of Film. We beg you. Or we'll have to steal it, like Janet Leight in Psycho. And we all know how that finished up.
So now down to business - today’s fresh-baked steaming tray of new posts:
The redoubtable, indefatigible, inexhaustible, indomitable, and just plain super Sam Juliano of Wonders in the Dark has composed a sterling, attention-raising piece about the Brigham Young University Film Music Archives, and their peerless work in tracking down, obtaining, restoring, and releasing original movie score recordings.
With her customary sang froid, excess of energy, and ineluctable intelligence, Christianne from Krell Laboratories has given us a post a day this week, and the latest is one on Hitchcock's last British film, and the work of his the Master was least happy with, Jamaica Inn; Christianne wrestles with her feelings for the film and also the legacy of its place in the Medved's The Fifty Worst Movies of All Time. A legacy to which I personally, blow a very loud raspberry to.
Meanwhile, International Blogger of Mystery Bill Kelso continues to compile a remarkable series of antique advertisements for Hitchcock's films at Scenes from the Morgue, the latest being original newspaper and magazine ads for Suspicion, Rope, and Psycho. He's also done a piece looking at the original cinema trailer for Psycho at Micro-Brewed Reviews.
The sinuously synaptic Sinaphile Ariel Schudson has a piece on the role of children in Hitchcock's movies at the blog of the AMIA Student Chapter at UCLA, and the way the adults and those children in his films are often oddly interchangeable.
The canny David Cairns of Shadowplay has for our reading pleasure presented a piece on the 3D version of Hitchcock's Dial M For Murder, with some fascinating discursions into Hitch's use of space in the film and its similarities to the Japanese master Yasujiro Ozu (note: link to Shadowplay links on to The Daily Notebook at MUBI).
Dave Enkosky of KL5-Film, the site which has my favorite movie blog banner in the universe, presents the trailer for North By Northwest after a brief but engaging commentary where, he claims, the film in question "broke my Hitchcock cherry". So we have that in common, too.
Meanwhile, rugged man of cinematic action Andrew Welch talks Rear Window at Adventures in Cinema, with some particularly interesting comments on the villain.
At the aptly titled We Talk About Movies, Vincenzo Tagle analyses the intricate visuals of Hitchcock's silent fight drama The Ring.
Way over yonder at the mOvie blog, everyone's favorite self-described Irish nerd Darren Mooney continues his look at episodes of Alfred Hitchcock Presents with the episode "The Hidden Thing"...
...and over at Limerwrecks, the dreaded duo of David Cairns and Hilary "Surly Hack" Barta continue to terrify the countryside with artfully witty doggerel: today their poetic subjects are those nice young boys of Rope.
Peter Labuza of LabuzaMovies.com picks out an intriguing continuity flaw in Psycho and follows where it leads his thoughts...
...whilst Tim Lacy at US Intellectual History digs into the voyeuristic implications at the heart of Rear Window.
The redoubtable Lee Price, whose blog 21Essays has been a ceaseless engine of creativity in this blogathon, studies Blackmail and Hitchcock's gift for depicting loneliness, through the device of an imagined argument between Hitch and Michael Powell.
Kenji Fujishima, the esteemed ringmaster at My Life, at 24 Frames Per Second, delves into another less celebrated Hitchcock film, the "anti-spy thriller" Topaz...
... whilst the eminent Peter Nellhaus of Coffee, Coffee, and More Coffee deftly gives his immense knowledge of Asian cinema a Hitchcockian twist, as he takes on the Rear Window-esque Taiwanese film Zoom Hunting.
...and Eric Bondurant of The Movie Review Warehouse changes tack to look at the effect of the vast gaps in the silent movie catalogue on the way we perceive that era, and in particular the way the pioneering work of early female directors like Alice Guy and Lois Weber is obscured in assessing both their careers and the impact they had on cinema culture at the time.
At Mindless Meanderings, the experienced Buckey Grimm offers more rare photos detailing the Library of Congress Paper Print Collection and its efforts to remaster its vast collection of historical documents and media, and a link to a newspaper piece he wrote on the subject of film restoration there in 1997.
At Backlots, Lara delves into the 1926 Lon Chaney The Phantom of the Opera, a pillar of silent film culture...
...and high in the gilded, fog-shrouded towers that crown the mighty citadel of Vanity Fair, James Wolcott talks up our Blogathon.
At Strictly Vintage Hollywood, Donna takes a look at Hitchcock the actor, photographer's model, showman, and married man - in specific, married to the great Alma.
The voices inside Sean Cohen's head at High Def Digest are having an ongoing row over the quality of The Birds and this is distracting colleagues from completing their own posts for the blogathon - so we can only pray they can sought it out soon.
At The End of Cinema, Sean Gilman's ongoing descent into the netherworlds of early Hitchcock sees him delving into Hitchcock's wild and woolly, expressionist-influenced comedy-adventure, Number Seventeen.
The team at Cinema Sight have been sorting through their favourite Hitchcocks all week: here's the latest fruit of the endeavour.
Flash: at High Def Digest things now progress apace, as film writer extraordinaire John Carvill has contributed an "unscientific analysis of the Blu-ray editions The 39 Steps & North by Northwest."
At Inessentials, Timothy Yenter is another for whom North By Northwest was a pivotal film lover's experience.
Darren Mooney at the mOvie Blog continues to expand his studies of Alfred Hitchcock Presents episodes, this time analysing Hitch's self-satirising humour in "Mr. Blanchard’s Secret".
The indubitable dabbler from Dubai, Hind Mezaina of The Culturist, contributes a fifth epic piece for the blogathon, this time tackling the fascinating topic of the many dream sequences in Hitchcock's films...
...whilst over in a Wide Screen World, Rich ascends The 39 Steps to a place of cinephile delights.
The one man unafraid to mix the culinary and the cinematic, Ron Deutsch of Chef du Cinema, will serve up three more Hitchcock recipes.
At Not Just Movies, Jake takes on Notorious and finds it a work of unusual subtlety and intricate skill for the Master...
...whilst the ostentatious Odienater, aka the oracular Odie Henderson, talks The Birds at Tales of OdieNary Madness...
...and at Way Too Damn Lazy to Write a Blog, Paul Etcheverry writes a blog - specifically taking on Hitchcock's most atypical, yet thematically linked films, the screwball comedy Mr and Mrs Smith and the neglected and personal early sound work Rich and Strange.
Speaking of rich and strange, Joe Thompson of The Pneumatic Rolling-Sphere Carrier Delusion continues his explorations of old film yearbooks for Hitchcockian ephemera to trace how Hitchcock was seen in the movie world before he became a singular icon, and digs up other delights in the process.
At MSN, Kate Erbland hacks her way through the jungle to discover the lost treasures of the Academy Film Archive...
...whilst the axiomatic Sean Axmaker, denizen of ye olde Parallax View, celebrates Abel Gance's much-restored epic Napoleon.
Feminéma is comin' at ya with a reverie regarding Anna Ondra, the first Hitchcock Blonde.
Sunday, 13 May 2012
And for donors, remember that pharaoh's might is great and his generosity even greater: 10 of you, to make up for your lighter pockets, will walk away the richer with a NFPF Treasures 5: The West box set, featuring the two short films, The Sergeant and The Better Man, the restoration of which the first For The Love of Film blogathon helped fund. Those two shorts came from the same amazing New Zealand trove of short films in which this blogathon's annointed project, Graham Cutts' The White Shadow, was also found.
And don’t forget: all blog posts MUST contain the donate button and/or link:
If you don’t have the link on your post, it will not be included on the blogathon home page.
Here are the donate buttons: