ACADEMY BIZARROS 2012
Viewers interested in documentary film and/or Academy Awards need to see David Itzkoff’s article in the New York Times of 10/3/12, “Flaws Seen in New Rules for Oscars.” Itzkoff is writing about the documentary category, and the title speaks for itself. He quotes objections to new procedures by Morgan Spurlock and Michael Moore. I admire both filmmakers, but their objections strike me as objectionable as the procedures they are protesting.
Anthony Breznican reports in the Entertainment Weekly recd. 10/5 that Seth MacFarlane has been chosen to be the host for what used to be a presentation of Academy Awards and is now television’s most vulgar variety show (vulgar in the oldest, broadest sense). Breznican quotes producers Neil Meron and Craig Zadan on their expectations, and their remarks reveal no more respect for the show or the awards than Breznican apparently has despite the pretense by all three that they are worried about MacFarlane’s lack of taste.
SOMETHING TO THINK ABOUT
From The Great Moviemakers by George Stevens, Jr. (cf. POST on September 7 this year): In his student days at the UCLA film school Paul Schrader “favored the fims of Robert Bresson, Yasujiro Ozu and Carl Dreyer.” In 1972 the University of California Press published Schrader’s Transcendental Style in Film: Ozu, Bresson, Dreyer, most recently available as a Da Capo reprint in 1988. The Stevens book quotes Schrader: “In many ways Taxi Driver is the struggling of a Bresson film through a Peckinpah kind of environment.”
SOMETHING ELSE TO THINK ABOUT
“…the wide screen , finally, has gone a long way toward destroying the last pretenses of a meaningfully organized image.” Rudolf Arnheim in Film as Art (University of California Press, 1958).
I would appreciate receiving comments on this last quote.
NEXT POST, FRIDAY OCTOBER 19
See you at the movies,