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Thread: Favorites Of 1993

  1. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by Chris Knipp View Post
    (A year later:) Interesting comment, Oscar, that I missed earlier. Wasn't really aware Wittgenstein was thought of as providing a model for film and art criticism though perhaps that should be obvious. Indeed I find there's a recent essay collection on this edited by Richard Allen of NYU and Malcolm Turvey of Sarah Lawrence, both professors of film. Very academic and too expensive to buy though. Wittgenstein liked to go to the movies, but only for distraction.

    PS. On your best English-language 1993 list: Boys of St. Vincent is a shocking film. I like Jarman. Name of the Father isn't much. Can't remember It's All True. I hated Naked. I don't like Tim Burton. I don't like Jane Campion. I can't stand Atom Agoyan. Schindler's List is sentimental and manipulative, but has an incredibly powerful sequence. Shortcuts is a great film, vintage Altman.

    This was also the year of True Romance and What's Eating Gilbert Grape.

    There are some excellent films in your "foreign" list.
    I'm sorry I overlooked your post. I came to Wittgenstein through the writings of the contemporary philosopher I consider a genius: Stanley Cavell, the author of 3 of my favorite books about film criticism and theory (or "anti-theory" as some would call it).
    I must reveal that my friends who are philosophers recently watched Jarman's Wittgenstein and sided with your earlier remark referring and objecting to the treatment as "campy spectacle".
    Regarding another 1993 release: Ken Loach's latest film Daniel Blake, which I've seen about 6 times, prompted me to watch some of his older films. I know you are a fan of Kes (and who isn't) but I think right now I would tell you that Sweet Sixteen is the most powerful and visceral and 1993's Raining Stones is just as great and it is more enjoyable because it's gritty but so very funny. I have it as "first runner-up" but it's going into the TOP 10 as soon as I edit the founding post.
    Last edited by oscar jubis; 06-28-2017 at 10:06 AM.

  2. #17
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    THAT was a while ago, but it's nice that you didn't let it drift away. I could see more of Ken Loach, I'm sure. Glad I'm vindicated on Jarman's Wittgenstein. It has little to do with Wittgenstein, whose thought is worth attempting to understand. I don't know who Stanley Cavell is. I'm not clear on why film theory is worth studying. Art theory, for example, would not interest me. I know (I think) quite a lot about art, but in college a course in aesthetics taught by a well known philosophy professor was a disaster. I wasn't good at it. My paper didn't cut it with him. Modern philosophy is a tough nut to crack. It's fun, sometimes, though. I guess if you get a PdD in film to teach it, film theory is something you are going to be examined on.

    I, Daniel Blake touched me. I saw it in Paris before it came here. But I could not bear to watch it six times. That shows an obsessive involvement. I once watched Patrice Chéreau's L'Homme blessé six times - in a theater, over several weeks. I identified in some profound way with parts of it, and found it hypnotic and haunting. I often rewatch all or parts of films I like the style of at home. When I had a screener of the droll Norwegian crime film In Order of Disappearance last year I kept sampling segments of it for days and days, till it expired. I did the same with that Polish film that's like a more fun and sensible Terence Malick film, All Those Sleepless Nights. I kept dipping into my screener of it - till I finally couldn't any more. It seemed magical and dreamy. The opposite of Ken Loach!
    Last edited by Chris Knipp; 06-28-2017 at 04:41 PM.

  3. #18
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    Every frame of a film contains an excess of information. Every frame is the result of so many decisions involving staging, performance, use of the camera, editing, sound mixing, etc. that in order to truly grasp how all the elements work jointly for what purposes, one has to look at a film or a sequence or scene over and over. Some films elicit that level of interest in me. I appreciate your description of how you "consumed" or processed that film from Norway.

    You are applying a theory every time you try to say one thing about 2 films or more.

  4. #19
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    Very well, if you say so. You're applying a theory every time you say it might rain. But you're mainly just making a savvy observation, or expressing an opinion. I don't call my opinions theories. I call them taste.

    I agree though that watching a sequence over and over enables one to make keen observations. They may be less natural observations, but they are keen.

  5. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by Chris Knipp View Post
    Very well, if you say so. You're applying a theory every time you say it might rain. But you're mainly just making a savvy observation, or expressing an opinion. I don't call my opinions theories. I call them taste.
    I'm being clear and specific. I wrote that a theory is involved, consciously or not, whenever one says "one thing about 2 films or more. Anytime you say something that applies to more than one film,you are associating those 2 or more things and whenever one does that, there is a theoretical underpinning for the relationship you claim the 2 or more things have and the significance and repercussion of that association.

  6. #21
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    Maybe. But I prefer to say I'm expressing my taste, and that my approach is untheoretical. Maybe this is just because I haven't studied "film theory." So if I follow any theories, I don't know what they are. I'd be surprised to find out, like Moliere's Bourgeois Gentilhomme who was astonished to learn that all along he had been speaking in "prose."

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