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( jferrelli )

Comments made by jferrelli

Rants and Raves: Films to be Thankful For

I am thankful for stream of consciousness which is how I put this list together. I let my brain drift to movies that have stayed with me over the years.

Any list of what I am thankful for has to begin with John Cassavetes, but what to choose? "A Woman Under the Influence" or "The Killing of a Chinese Bookie" "Opening Night" or "Faces" or "Love Streams?" It's all about love, all about family, all about the potential of personal cinema within and outside the bounds of Hollywood.

I am thankful for Terence Davies, particularly "The Long Day Closes," a boy obsessed with all things cinema certainly resonates and the lush visuals, immaculate symmetry, and detailed aural components make it as near to perfection as could be for me.

I am thankful for Frank Tashlin's expert skewering of advertising (Stay Put Lipstick), movie stars (the inimitable Jayne Mansfield), and the American dream (chicken farms over fame and fortune) makes "Will Success Spoil Rock Hunter," well, a total success of 50's filmmaking at its cartoon-iest.

I am thankful for musicals, from the pop out colors of "Singing in the Rain," to the heavenly "Carousel," from Streisand's star making debut in "Funny Girl" to the 60's groove of "How To Succeed in Business," from the before its time reality tv studio setting of quasi "Rocky Horror" sequel "Shock Treatment" to John Cameron Mitchell's modern tranny extravaganza "Hedwig and the Angry Inch."

I give thanks for David Mamet, the deadpan performance and iambic pentameter of then Mrs Mamet Lindsay Crouse in his directorial debut "House of Games" and mastery of the cop genre/buddy movie in "Homicide."

I give thanks to Jean Cocteau for the black and white poetic death beauty that is "Orpheus."

Thanks to the glory of Robert Bresson, from "Mouchette" to "L'argent."

I am thankful for Robert Altman's revisionist detective work in "The Long Goodbye," complete with a Jewish Phillip Marlowe, his expose of all things Americana in "Nashville" to the ghosts of the same in his one room setting theatrical adaptation of "Come Back to the Five and Dime, Jimmy Dean Jimmy Dean."

I am thankful for a devious, adulterous, murder minded Marilyn Monroe in Henry Hathaway's "Niagara" and a tortured repressed governess Deborah Kerr in Jack Clayton's ultra creepy Henry James adaptation, "The Innocents."

And because I have to end this somewhere, I am thankful to Todd Haynes, not only for his Barbie doll epic "Superstar: The Karen Carpenter Story" but for the chilling sterility of "Safe," featuring a role of a lifetime for the fabulous Julieanne Moore.

November 29, 2010 at 2 a.m. ( | suggest removal )