Tuesday, 2 January 2007

First Week, Jan '07

Happy New Year, Everyone!

We hope you all had a good time in the year past. Whatever the case may be, we’re sure that most of you will have lived it up at the changing of the guard. In recognition of the spirit of revelry, we thought it appropriate to send up A HARD DAY’S NIGHT as our first screening of the year. Hopefully, by Thursday those bloodshot eyes would have recovered, and feet would have glided back to the ground.

2nd January 2007
6:15 p.m. at the Auditorium

Runtime: 2 minutes
Directed by Marv Newland

The telling of this oh-so-short short would be longer than its actual duration! Take our word for it: it’s good.

Followed by

Runtime: 1 hour 27 minutes
Directed by Richard Lester

It’s been a hard day’s night
And I’ve been working like a dog
It’s been a hard day’s night
I should be sleeping like a log

An honest, cheeky look at the lives of the boys from Liverpool, changed forever to a cloistered existence within the trappings of near-godhood. The Fab Four look on with bemusement, tinged with a bit of chagrin, at the wave of mass adulation they have recently been subjected to – and will have to endure for years. Behind the glitter, they had to keep up with hectic schedules, grueling studio sessions, and struggle with their identities. Shot in B&W, this movie pioneered cutting the visuals to match the beat of the music, a trait still present in contemporary music videos. Despite the limited budget, it stands as a decent movie by itself. Just imagine. Your parents and ours were shaking their legs to these tunes, so watch this movie, if for nothing else.

About the director: Richard Lester (b. 1939) worked with the Beatles in the 60s, making, in addition to the above movie, HELP (1965). His biggest box-office hits were THE THREE MUSKETEERS (1973) and THE FOUR MUSKETEERS (1974).

4th January 2007
6:15 p.m. at the Auditorium

Runtime: 1 hour 50 minutes
Directed by Pier Paolo Pasolini

“You will kill your father and make love to your mother!” – prophesy of the Oracle (or words to that effect).

The sentiment against incest is deeply rooted in our consciousnesses, a taboo so strong it is spoken of in whispers even today, a sin put almost on par with cannibalism. So too, is patricide, the killing of one’s own father. The title character commits both, though not at first aware of the fact. Based on the famous Greek tragedy, this cinematic interpretation stays faithful to the original story, but Pasolini brings his inimitable touch to it. A sensuous delight worthy of kings. His visuals are highly textured and throb with life. Somehow this film evokes the feel of an ancient period far better than modern CG-assisted historical epics; perhaps it’s all the rough edges, very earthy. It never seeks to be fully authentic, though – e.g. the names on the way-markers are engraved in Roman, not Greek script, and the soldiers’ accoutrements seem too cumbersome to be practical (but one could look into this). Those familiar with Pasolini will instantly recognise trademarks, such as the imprecise lip-sync and the untutored acting.

About the Director: Pier Paolo Pasolini (b. 1922, d. 1975) remains a controversial figure even now. Incredibly gifted, he had a view of the world that was fierce and personal, and had the courage to express it. He offended many powerful people along the way, as his brutal murder attests. The fact remains, however, that he was no pornographer. Just a man who loved life and believed in the inherent sacredness of all things.

With regards,
The Film Club.

P.S. The Mess Party was good, wasn’t it?

1 comment:

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