Thursday, 20 November 2008

Film Summarys

Phil makes us watch a lot films, luckily most of them are great (except The Haunting which was rubbish). The films that he showed us for this project are ones which are renowned for their set design and sense of space. I had already seen some of them but Night Of The Hunter, The Haunting and The Cook, the Thief, His Wife and her Lover were new experiences. I don't feel like analyzing them too much 'cause i'm pretty burnt out on analyzing stuff right now.

The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari 1920 Directed by Robert Wiene

The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari is a pretty tough watch these days but in terms of its visual style its still very good. Not many things come close to looking as strange as this one.

Metropolis 1927 Directed by Fritz Lang

Metropolis is an amazing film, what impresses the most is the fact that it was made in 1927 and still looks fantastic to this day. It is pretty clear how this film has influenced a boat-load of other films. The scale of the whole thing is incredible and the story really holds up well.

Night of the Hunter 1955 Directed by Charles Laughton

Night of the Hunter was very good, Robert Mitchum is a great actor and he plays his part really well. The film itself has some really great moments especially the scene where the kids are floating down the river, it almost feels like some sort of fairy-tale. A couple of times I could clearly see the influence of a film like The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari especially in the scence just before he murders the Mother. A bone of contention among my classmates and was that they didn't like the final scene. I reckon I was the only one who probably liked it. Apparently Laughton wanted it to be much darker and be a scathing commentary on American life but its not like the film wasn't already depressing enough. The kids Dad was executed and the mad preacher bloke killed their Mum and dumped her body in the bottom of lake( She was a little grating but I don't think she deserved to have her throat cut) I say let the poor kiddies have a nice Christmas. I do think it is a shame Laughton never made another film because he was clearly a great director.

The Haunting 1963 Directed by Robert Wise

The Haunting a is a classic haunted house ghost story. In terms of horror, The Haunting seemed like a film that was relevant when it was first released but the impact of it has diminished over the years. In terms of set design etc it works pretty well as it uses clever camera tricks to give the house a strange sense of eeriness. Unfortunately this can only take a film so far and I personally found the main character (Eleanor) to be horrible and the other main characters to be pretty dull. It all gets a little bit silly towards the end.

Alien 1979 Directed by Ridley Scott

Alien is one of only two films that Riddles has directed that is any good (the other one is Blade Runner). Personally I think that Aliens is a actually a better film but the set design for Alien is really impressive stuff.

The Cook, the Thief, His Wife and her Lover 1989 Directed by Peter Greenaway

This was a great romp (haha)