Archive for April 14, 2011


Posted in FILM with tags , , on April 14, 2011 by dcairns

From HIGH TREASON, Britain’s 1929 answer to METROPOLIS, a drama of impending warfare in the distant year 1950, a time of two-way television, channel tunnels and beach volleyball. Over at the Daily Notebook, in this week’s edition of The Forgotten, you can read all about it and ponder the weird mindset of it’s writer-producer, Noel Pemberton Billing.

Grabbing some of the big city imagery of Lang’s film, but not taking it quite so far, the more muted Brits eschew the class warfare theme (unsurprisingly) of the earlier meisterwerk, concentrating on a less-than-simmering conflict between hawkish military types and religious peaceniks — the promising subplot about international agitators seeking to provoke a war between Britain and America is swiftly abandoned, alas.

Incidentally, where is Scene 1 taking place? It appears to be at a sort of Checkpoint Charlie in between Europe (ruled from London, rightly enough) and the US. And it’s on dry land…

The Fleeting Image #1

Posted in FILM with tags , , , on April 14, 2011 by dcairns

If you freeze Bertolucci’s THE CONFORMIST at just the right moment, Jean-Louis Trintignant’s reflection seems to merge with Dominique Sanda’s face to form a Janus-like monstrosity. Just sayin’. The effect lasts just a few frames but I still wouldn’t count on it being accidental.

Stopping the film mid-dissolve is also rewarding here, where “Bert” (as Peter O’Toole called him) mixes from a painting of a seaside scene, to the scene itself. The various objects, particularly the boat, don’t match up perfectly, but I love the way the stylised clouds seem to hover in the actual sky.