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« Education Reform and the Lessons of History | Main | Web Brilliance »

August 01, 2003


Friedrich --

* Philip Hensher thinks that the glory days of the French cinema are long gone, here. I find it harder than he does to sneeze at such current talents as Breillat, Ozon, Denis and Assayas. But he's written a drily funny piece that's well worth reading.

* I managed to avoid the recent Matthew Barney extravaganza at the Guggenheim, so I've got no opinion about it myself. But I found this acidic NY Press review of the show (here) by Christian Viveros-Faune very amusing. He gets off some hard-to-resist cracks about Conceptualism.



posted by Michael at August 1, 2003


Not commenting much, but still enjoying your postings (both of you fellows).

Posted by: Z on August 2, 2003 12:42 AM

That's very kind of you, Z. Glad to know it, and thanks for saying so. Please do jump into the comments whenever you're moved to -- interested to hear more from you.

Posted by: Michael Blowhard on August 2, 2003 12:44 AM

Do you recall the first time you said, seriously, "I managed to avoid X"?

I don't, nonetheless it seems like a significant event a bright person should remember. It's quite a milestone when you realize some hyped to the hilt thing or other is not only worth seeing but also to be shunned.

Posted by: j.c. on August 5, 2003 1:45 AM

As for Breillat Ozon and Assayas they don't make much for French cinema. Nothing with a style of its own that will "still be around in 50 years' time." Only biodegradable 'auteur' navel-gazing.
The problem here in France actually lies with the slowly eroding auteur-centered thinking. Over there are Luc Besson's yesmen on the payroll at EuropaCorp and here's this naive and stiff thought that France is full of young Truffauts to be discovered.
This Parisian cinematographical correctness even gets strenghtened by the scare of its yankee archrival. 'Here we make nice little films that have nothing to do with teen-targeting and TV-ads.'

Well, if you want a debate over talented young directors let's talk about Kassovitz (why has he gone to shoot a Halloween flick for Joel Silver?) or Gaspar No who both made movies that go against the political weather. It showed raw energy but they still have to assert themselves. They were brought up in auteurland so they can't seem to make a movie of their own without writing it from the very start to the bottom credit...
I say this is the craftsman's minutia disease: might be cured some day - at last.

Posted by: viktor on August 10, 2003 5:32 PM

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