Archive for Prince

Blogathon Man

Posted in FILM, MUSIC with tags , , , , on December 1, 2017 by dcairns

Here’s where you can read links to the latest entries in The Late Show: The Late Movies Blogathon.

Matthew David Wilder guest-blogs below with an indescribable meditation I guess you’d call it on late cinema, late humanity, lateness itself. It’s beautiful. Here.

David Ehrenstein got in early with a tribute to what a friend of mine insisted on calling UNDER THE MERRY TUNE, the first and last dramatic feature film directed by the artist we can safely go back to calling Prince, I think. Here!

First-time participant Jonathan Wertheim weighs in on Sydney Greenstreet’s swan song, MALAYA, here.

Gareth, of Gareth’s movie Diary, long-term contributor, delivers an appreciation of a Val Guest picture which should qualify as late since it’s thirty years into the man’s career, but I think he still had twenty-odd years to go. Are all Val Guest movies late? Could be. Anyway, this is a good one, and a good piece! Here.

Regular guest Shadowplayer David Melville Wingrove assesses Gerard Philipe’s final outing here.

More will follow. You can read my own latest entries underneath this one, if I can figure out how to pin it to the top. I’m pretty sure I shouldn’t use an actual pin.

A Floury Scarf

Posted in FILM with tags , , , , , , , , on October 8, 2008 by dcairns

At the end of Dreyer’s VAMPYR (spoiler alert) the evil doctor (a fore-clone of Professor Abronsius from Polanski’s THE FEARLESS VAMPIRE KILLERS) is famously smothered under an onslaught of flour. We can look back to Griffith’s A CORNER IN WHEAT and forward to Peter Weir’s WITNESS, but seems to have been thought up independently, after a visit to a plaster factory got Dreyer thinking about WHITE.

Personally, what I like is the way he takes his scarf off as he’s being smothered. Like that’s going to make him more comfortable. “Blimey, it’s — kaff! kaff! — warm in here,” he could almost be saying. This is the kind of weirdness that makes VAMPYR so memorable, and it suffuses everything from the design (this is perhaps THE great wallpaper movie) through the photography (the sharp interiors and deliberately light-fogged exteriors) to the camera moves (which follow the actors about but don’t respond to their every hesitation: the camera keeps drifting as the actor pauses, then catches up). This is the kind of stuff that gives the film its particular oneiric sway.

Incidentally, my friend Robert tells me he just dreamt he was co-starring in a remake of Chan-Wook Park’s LADY VENGEANCE alongside the artist formerly known as Prince. I resolve to dream a movie tonight so I can compete with that epic at the box office of the subconscious. I’ll let you know if I succeed.

The marvellous Eureka Masters of Cinema DVD of VAMPYR comes stuffed with extras, including a commentary by Guillermo del Toro which begins “Just imagine a fat Mexican has come to your house and you have to listen to him talk,” and Craig Keller’s sweet documentary about Dreyer’s leading man, Baron Nicholas de Gunzberg, who helped finance the film as well as appearing in it (he’s a very effective, unusual actor, and his money obviously didn’t stink either). Baron Nick’s later status in American fashion, as mentor to Calvin Klein, was news to me, and a delight.

Between love and madness lies obsession.