Archive for Batman: The Movie


Posted in FILM with tags , , , , , , , , , , , on June 27, 2016 by dcairns


Already, after just one FULL day of viewing in Bologna, things are getting blurry. BATMAN: THE MOVIE was one of the last things I saw in Edinburgh, and here comes Cesar Romero, the Joker himself, as a stage-door Johnny in William Wyler’s Sturges-scripted THE GOOD FAIRY (“A lot of early Sturges scripts have only a few recognizably Sturgesian lines, but this one is all Sturges all the time,” is how I pitched it to a fellow patron) and here comes Alfred the butler in MARNIE, screening in an archival Technicolor print. Everything is intermingling.

Also viewed — Mariann Lewinsky introduced her Krazy Serial programme of serial installments from a hundred years ago, saying that she had been urged to commemorate the Futurist manifesto, published right here in Bologna in 1916, but “it’s a terrible document. And the futurists, who took a great deal from cinema, gave nothing back. Whereas the Dadaists, who took nothing from anywhere, gave a great deal back.” So by creating a collage of incomplete serials, she pays homage to Dada and to Krazy Kat, who is also celebrating his centenary.

Jacques Feyder’s LE PIED QUI ÉTREINT (THE CLUTCHING FOOT) is a parody of serials, and specifically THE EXPLOITS OF ELAINE (I know this only because I saw a couple of episodes in Bologna two years ago), with that show’s Clutching Hand replaced by “the man in the green scarf”, a masked figure in an outsize baby carriage, limbs spasming in horrible spasticity, bare feet grasping at convenient props such as the old-fashioned car horn affixed to his perambulator. He’s my new role model.

More on this later, hopefully — it’s the greatest set of nonsense ever assembled.

These disconnected fragments of narrative have been assembled alongside one another to throw up precisely the kind of random connections that make film festivals so confusing — the final stage of this syndrome is when characters from the films seem to appear on the streets, or characters from the streets in the films. I’m not quite there yet, but it’s still early days.

Go West, Young Batman

Posted in FILM with tags , , , , , on June 23, 2016 by dcairns


Today I shall be assisting Kevin Smith introduce BATMAN: THE MOVIE, which should be interesting.

Mr. Smith has been presenting his new film, YOGA HOSERS, and apparently talking to every single fan who wants a word. A gent.

Tomorrow — Bologna for the Cinema Ritrovato! Chaplin! Keaton! Epstein! Tavernier! Becker! Feyder! Pabst! Whale! Brando! Saslavsky! Cahn! Gance! Penn! Mizoguchi! Too many others. Reports to follow…

The Longest Lanyard

Posted in FILM with tags , , , , , , on June 15, 2016 by dcairns


OK, so I have my festival brochure, my staff pass and my press pass. Co-writer Alex Livingstone gets the filmmaker pass, because how many lanyards can I wear before my slender neck gives way?

Dates for the diary ~

Tomorrow I open the Festival, if you discount the Opening Night Gala and Party, with POW!!! Origin Story, presenting the development of comic book heroes in the cinema, from 1895 to (sort of) the present day, showing how our retrospective fits into the history books. This will be at 16.20 in Filmhouse 3.

Speaking of the retrospective, I will be introducing DANGER: DIABOLIK in the same venue at 18.20, and then MODESTY BLAISE on the big, big screen of Filmhouse 1 at 23.10.

On Friday, our movie THE NORTHLEACH HORROR premieres in the shorts screening at Cineworld at 18.00. This is sold out, officially, but there will probably be more tickets available on the day. Then we premiere AGAIN, if that’s even possible, in front of THE REZORT at 23:25 in Filmhouse 1.

On Saturday, THE REZORT gets a second screening, accompanied by THE NORTHLEACH HORROR again, at 20.35 in Cineworld. Still tickets available for this one, I believe.

I’ll be at all those screenings.

On Saturday I resume intros for POW!!!, so you can see me in front of BARBARELLA, then the next day TINTIN AND THE MYSTERY OF THE GOLDEN FLEECE, LONE WOLF AND CUB: SWORD OF VENGEANCE, etc. I don’t know if I’ll be at GOLGO 13, as I have a funeral that day, and I’ll be out of the country at the end of the fest so will miss POPEYE and FLASH GORDON, but I think you’ll see me and co-programmer/mastermind Niall Greig Fulton before BABA YAGA, FRIDAY FOSTER and BATMAN: THE MOVIE, the last-named featuring a Very Special Guest.

What I don’t quite see is how I’m going to finish a book chapter, a DVD text essay, and edit an entire video essay at the same time. But no doubt there’s a way. It generally turns out that there is.