Almost forgot I promised to post something from the Woo-back machine every Friday. I think of it as machine that whirrs quietly under my desk, that belches green smoke when I fire it up into search mode. Or some times it just makes those quiet 1950s Sci-Fi noises, as it works.
My imagination digresses.
Long-time readers of this blog know that I can tend to obsess over certain authors (um, GS anyone), but also movies, and whole movie eras (the 70s).
I've written a number of posts about Night Movies, one of my absolute faves. And it is high time I watched it again. I've seen it a lot of times, lost count really, but each time I see more. I don't think it's on NetFlix, in Canada they don't seem to have much of s back catalogue. But find it, do yourself a favour, and watch it this weekend.
(Check out the trailer - Oh, and make sure you read Ebert's review)
Here is my post from July 28, 2010:
I've heard that great novels (or even short stories) start with an image. John Fowles pictured a woman staring out to sea, and that became the French Lieutenant's Woman. I often think of the above picture, which in a way reminds me of Andrew Wyeth's paintings. There is a certain bleakness that I am drawn to, and I feel that some sort of story will come out of this picture. It helps that the landscape is barren, with surreal trees, and that the woman (my wife actually) is walking away from the viewer.
I've been thinking a lot about imagery and mood - having my own little film festival, rewatching some great pulp neo-noir movies like Point Blank and Night Moves.
Night Moves is one of those films that you know is great (not just me, many critics put it in the top ten of 1975, and the best of the 70's) - but you don't know why it is great. Sure, there is Gene Hackman, an actor I'd pay just to watch him shave. And he is at the top of his game here. In the early 70's he did French Connection, The Conversation and even Young Frankenstein (best blind hermit in film - wait, I made espresso!) But back to Night Moves - it puts the grit in grit. The movie seems lo-buck, sets, lighting, even some of the acting seems like it was done on the cheap (it was). But it is the writing that cuts deep. I think it would have a real hard time getting made today. too personal, too circular, too subtle even.
But there are images in it that are embroiled in my brain - Hackman driving around in his beat up Mustang, Jennifer Warren's world weary face that asks him where he was when Kennedy died, and of course that last great shot of the boat going in circles, just like the movie, and sort of like life.