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  1. #1
    Picture Book

    Films, art & writing

    While I am suffering from writer's block, I have a question.

    Do other writers judge films as if they have been written or painted?

    I loved FRIDA as if it were a book and a work of art, as I loved 'From Hell,' 'What Dreams May Come,' 'Traffic,' and 'Snatch.'

    What films have made an impact on other writers?

  2. #2
    Russ Still

    Re: Films, art & writing

    I love movies. The wife and I are always ranking our favorites. It's difficult to put them into any order, but mine are:
    A Clockwork Orange
    Shawshank Redemption
    The Sting
    Saving Private Ryan
    The Elephant Man
    Last of the Mohicans (1991)
    The Blue Max
    A League of Their Own

  3. #3
    Picture Book

    Re: Films, art & writing

    Oh yes...The Elephant Man.....

  4. #4
    Glen T. Brock

    Re: Films, art & writing


    I confess I have strange and eclectic taste in film, art, and literature.

    Art: I study illustration. I have an affinity for Art Nouveau but other post impressionist styles have their place.

    Films: I suppose my interest in illustration slants my perception of cinema. I am a big fan of Fritz Lang, both in his early German post impressionist films such as METROPOLIS, THE GIRL IN THE MOON, and of course M, and his later hard boiled films he did in America.
    CITIZEN KANE is memorable for the same reason. KANE is a masterpiece because it works like a painter paints his canvas. Everything, from the costumes to the settings, camera angles, plot devices, the use of shadow, and very importantly, off camera dialog work together to create the whole. KANE works as literature, art, and cinema. The later works of Hitchcock, Huston, and Ford are all influenced by Welles.

    Of all the modern work I think the masterpiece is CHINATOWN. That film is the greatest example of film noir in the last thirty years. This film has it all--intelligent plotting, well crafted photography, sensativity to setting, costume, and special effects. The ending line is the theme of the entire movie. "Let it go, Jake. It's Chinatown."

    So how does this affect my writting? What I lack in the etiquettes of writting I've experienced by observation. I know how a mystery is supposed to work because I know what dreams are made of. I know the loneliness of being the son of Kala, the she ape. And I know She who must be obeyed.

    You see, Picturebook, you need it all to make a stew. You have to have imagery, plot, characterization, style and of course grace. We live in an age of wonder. Think of it--we have instant gratification at our fingertips. We can peek voyuerishly at the efforts of great artisans. We can casually dissect their work, take it apart and put it back together again at our leisure. We can do this without leaving a mark on the canvas or manuscript. It is the miracle of the modern mind.

    Sorry if I've taken alittle too much time here. Its been fun.

    Glen T. Brock

  5. #5
    Picture Book

    Re: Films, art & writing

    That was good to read, Glen. (Your posting.) Have you seen Frida yet?

    I have painted, drawn and illustrated for a living for a long while, but with writing, as you say, 'you have to have imagery, plot, characterization, style and of course grace.' A far broader canvas for expression.

  6. #6
    Glen T. Brock

    Re: Films, art & writing

    I haven't seen it yet. She was Rivera's mistress wasn't she?

    From time to time I watch TO KILL A MOCKINGBIRD. I would watch it to see Gregory Peck's powerfull performance brilliantly balanced by Robert Duvall's simple but brilliant portrayal of Boo Radley. The ending of the novel (and the movie)always brings me to tears. "Neighbors bring food when there's death. Boo Radley was our neighbor. He gave us two soap dolls, a broken watch, a pocket knife, and our lives. Atticus said you don't know a man until you walk in his shoes. Standing on Boo Radley's porch was enough."


  7. #7
    Picture Book

    Re: Films, art & writing

    She married Diego Rivera.

    I enjoyed 'Monsoon Wedding,' too.

    I haven't seen To Kill a Mocking Bird with Gregory Peck...but I will!

  8. #8
    Keith Blount

    Re: Films, art & writing

    Recently I saw Donnie Darko which I thought was a very "literary" film in its way (probably the best movie I've seen since Requiem for a Dream two years ago)... But generally, I am blown away by anything written/directed by Hal Hartley (Trust, Simple Men, Amateur, Book of Life etc). His dialogue is so odd and often becomes circular - it is unique and very, very funny. (One of my favourite snatches of dialogue, between two college professors: "You can't attack a student just because he doesn't like Dostoyevsky." [Pause.] "Perhaps.") He also uses some striking techniques, such as beginning and ending a film with the same words (Simple Men: "Don't move.") or with a very similar image (Amateur: Martin Donovan's character face down on the cobbles), emphasising that something important has changed.

  9. #9
    F Walter

    Re: Films, art & writing

    I guess I really prefer films that don't take themselves too seriously that way I can pick out the numerous faults one often see's in films and not get to distressed over them. It bothers me when I see little things that don't make any sense so I prefer it if the entire film is dumb or surreal instead of just one bit.
    Speaking of surreal, did anyone ever see a film called Motorama? About a kid driving across a dessert collecting cards to win some prize I don't remember much of it but I know none of it made any sense to me at the time.
    Or a film called Bad Boy Bubby? a little sick at times but funny and definitely surreal.
    I don't know much about art thats really my older sisters area.
    However films that I consider to be works of art would most certainly include these:

    The Mask and The Trueman Show, (Jim Carrey has Talent!)

    Bad Taste there might be no one at all here thats actually ever seen that one it took exactly four people and four years to make its about a very looking bunch of aliens who are attempting to invade the earth (I think via some remote part of england) and it is very, very, very odd!

    Oh and of course there's the Colour Purple, it might be serious but its a class film!

    Batman returns (Catwoman's kinnda my idle)

    Dangerous Liasons,

    Being John Malkovich (CLASS FILM!)

    And anything with Ryan Phillipe in it! except for gosford park that was crap no matter how much I let hormones lead me in these choices!

  10. #10
    Russ Still

    Re: Films, art & writing

    Yeah, I missed a couple. Y'all are right. Chinatown and Being John Malkovich both belong in my list of favorites, too.

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