Library Loot

library-lootLast week’s loot was freaking enormous if you include the additions I added Saturday morning. And believe it or not I got through all of them but one, I didn’t quite get to Wild Strawberries.  I probably would have, but The Silence took all the wind out of my Ingmar Bergman sails.  It’s the first Bergman film that really just bored me.  It was really, really boring.  And it was so ambiguous that I couldn’t manage to glean any sort of meaning from it.  But at least I wasn’t the only one.  The New York Times agreed with me.

As for the other Bergman films in last week’s loot, they were all fantastic.  I decided, thanks to suggestions, to stick to the full five-hour mini-series version of Scenes from a Marriage.  It’s touted as one of Bergman’s best, and I’d have to agree.  It was super accessible and didn’t feel like 299 minutes.  The Seventh Seal was fantastic and creepy.  The guy who plays Death haunts me.  I’m going to have to watch it again soon.  Hour of the Wolf was suggested to me as proof that David Lynch is very much influenced by the Swedish director.  And I have to concur that it is.  Which, of course, made for a hella-creepy, and fun film.  I’d highly recommend it.  I could watch Liv Ullmann forever.

Holy Smoke! ended my brief, but intense love affair with Jane Campion.  It’s pretty much a pretentious piece of crap.  An excuse to put Harvey Keitel and Kate Winslet in the middle of the Australian outback where they’re free to do sado-masochist stuff sexually and psychologically to each other.  Not awesome, Campion.  Not awesome.  I guess I’ll always have The Piano.

I’m still on the fence about whether or not I enjoyed Five Easy Pieces.  Clearly, it was well done and certainly thought-provoking, but Jack Nicholson is the father of over-acting and it really bugged me in this film (sure it worked in The Shining, but not here).  No real person smashes glass in every room they enter a room, or during every conversation.

Rosemary’s Baby was thrilling.  It kept me on the edge of my seat the entire time.  I wasn’t horrified by it, it wasn’t a scary film,  mostly just disturbing.  Especially the final scene.  I won’t ruin it for those who haven’t seen it.  But I would highly recommend you check it out if you haven’t yet.

8 1/2 was certainly the most challenging (besides The Silence). But I actually really enjoyed it.  And Marcello Mastroianni is pretty much the coolest guy ever.  I rented two more Fellini films this week if that’s any indication.  This is another film I’ll have to watch again and again before I start to grasp the real importance.  Now I can’t wait for Nine.

Here’s this week’s loot:
The ApartmentThe ConversationNights of CabiriaLa StradaThrough a Glass Darkly

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One Response to “Library Loot”
  1. Mitch says:

    Excellent choices; all five of those titles are in my personal library. “Nights of Cabiria” is such a great film. Probably my second favorite Fellini.

    If you get a chance, come back to “Wild Strawberries.” Actually, I would recommend a double feature of that film and “Fanny and Alexander,” as a good comparison of early and late Bergman. The two films have a lot of common themes, and it’s interesting that the early film is from the perspective of a man near death while the late film is from the perspective of a child.

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