Archive for Pow!!!

The Sunday Intertitle: Less than an ant

Posted in Comics, FILM with tags , , , , on May 28, 2017 by dcairns

First encountered the generally charming ELLA CINDERS (1926) when prepping last year’s POW!!! retrospective on comic book movie adaptations with Niall Greig Fulton for Edinburgh International Film Festival. Looked at it again last night with Fiona as prep for a project she’s undertaking.

I would have missed the political significance of this intertitle because I lazily assumed “Armenian” was just a comic intensifier, like certain swear words. The old Woody Allen joke about someone trying to commit suicide “by standing next to an Armenian” is certainly racist and would hopefully not be something W.A. would stand by today. It’s mitigated slightly by our certainty that Woody does not have anything against Armenians, but that certainty is in itself racist, born of the belief that Armenia isn’t significant enough to have any strong opinions about.

(There’s a would-be funny line in THE PRESIDENT’S ANALYST about the prez losing sleep over Libya — Libya, of all places! — that kinda falls flat now.)

Fiona pointed out that the Armenian famine was a real thing, the result of genocide by the Ottoman Empire during WWI, less than ten years before ELLA CINDERS. Not so funny now. And curious that a mainstream, lighthearted Hollywood comedy would think this a suitable subject for amusement.

Oh, I see. It’s funny because they’re Armenian.

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Go West, Young Batman

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

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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…

Testament

Posted in Comics, FILM with tags , , , , on June 21, 2016 by dcairns

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A busy few days, which explains light blogging here —

Introduced TINTIN AND THE MYSTERY OF THE GOLDEN FLEECE, which has a remarkable turn by Georges Wilson as Captain Haddock, wearing a beard that seems to be spreading over his entire face. Everybody always remembers Jean-Pierre Talbot’s quiff as being weirdly plastinated, but in fact it’s quite natural — subsequent actors in the role haven’t looked as credible.

Introduced LONE WOLF AND CUB: SWORD OF VENGEANCE, in a stunning 35mm print, whose strange soundtrack necessitated the reconstruction of Filmhouse’s projector between shows. Soldering was going on. And it worked! The perfect Father’s Day treat.

Introduced GOLGO 13, accompanied by my co-curator, the mastermind behind POW!!!, Niall Fulton.

Have finished a chapter on Howard Hawks (about five minutes ago) for a forthcoming book.

Am writing an essay for Criterion.

Am editing a video essay for Masters of Cinema.

And we laid Roddy to rest yesterday in a moving ceremony organized with love and imagination by his little sister, my wonderful wife, Fiona.