Archive for Jeanne Dielman 23 Rue Quai du Commerce 1080 Bruxelles

The Sunday Intertitle: That Happy, Sexy, Sax-Playing Prince

Posted in FILM with tags , , , , , , , , on December 4, 2022 by dcairns

I’ve accepted the new Sight & Sound top twenty as a welcome nudge to see some films I’ve neglected. But, happily, I had just watched IN THE MOOD FOR LOVE so I feel I’m catching up. Since most of my BA1 students at Edinburgh College of Art are Chinese, I thought I should include some Chinese film and I was way behind in my Wong Kar-Wei viewing. Of course, it turned out this was the one film in my season most of them had seen, even though it was made before they were born, I think.

And it has intertitles! Already at the beginning I was thinking I might make use of the first caption, but since it’s right at the front end of the movie it’s not really inter-anything. But then the film ends with a trip to Cambodia and a flurry of titles.

It’s a film I’ll need to see more than once. WKW’s endings often seem a little mysterious — those I’ve seen, anyway — and this one is particularly evocative, tying together the historical past, and a country that was almost eradicated in Year Zero, still in this story’s future, with a romance that’s been tragically sundered by time and circumstances.

And I was absurdly pleased to recognize the name of Prince Sihanouk, “that happy, sexy, sax-playing prince,” from Spalding Gray and Jonathan Demme’s SWIMMING TO CAMBODIA.

Now I just need to watch JEANNE DIELMAN and properly revisit BEAU TRAVAIL to get my cinephile badge back.

Street With No Name

Posted in FILM with tags , , on March 23, 2010 by dcairns

Was fortunate enough to pick a copy of the Criterion Collection’s DVD of JEANNE DIELMAN, 23 QUAI DU COMMERCE, 1080 BRUXELLES for cheap. I haven’t watched it yet, but not having seen the films never stopped Michael Parkinson reviewing CARAVAGGIO and FLESH AND BLOOD when he hosted FILM ’86, so I feel fully qualified to write about it.

Really my thoughts are more tangential to the film (well, they’d kind of have to be) — I was wondering what other films would benefit from including not only a character’s name, but their full postal address. It’s a pressing question.

You could have FRANKENSTEIN, THE SCARY WINDMILL LABORATORY, NR. INGOLSTADT. The Roger Ebert lookalike star of UP could have his street address as well as that Peruvian plateau he winds up on. And THE SEARCHERS, NO FIXED ABODE has a certain ring to it. Since Fassbinder made films which have people’s names (VERONIKA VOSS) and addresses (BERLIN ALEXANDERPLATZ), we could save a lot of time by grafting them together. ROSA LUXEMBURG has the advantage of being a name and an address.

Further suggestions?

Chantal Akerman herself, of course, lives in the splendour of her Chantal Akermansion.