by Ryland Walker Knight
[Spent a lot of last week running around town, and working on a non-cinematic (ahem, paid) writing project, so movies took a necessary back seat. I read instead. And, yeah, with this work and the basketball options in high definition (not to mention a visit to Oracle Saturday night), I just couldn't bring myself to watch any number of films.]
- Va Savoir [Jacques Rivette, 2001] # Started over a little late. Too late, as it happens, to finish before my lids got too heavy. But this time I got a good hour into the picture, and find a developing idea: as much as I love La Belle Noiseuse, Rivette's '00s work is way more interesting, to say more mysterious, than his '90s work. Any takers?
- Mélo [Alain Resnais, 1986] Everything's a front, and a bad one. These idiots just can't get anything right, except for a somersault. More in another recherche shortly. [link]
- Fantastic Mr. Fox [Wes Anderson, 2009] # Still delightful, ebullient. A true celebration of difference and singularity set to a great score, at a great pace, and overflowing with detail. Not sure if it rivals Playtime, as Brody writes, but that artistic generosity Wes brings his pictures constantly yields affective registers—both subtle and bombastic, always joyful—rarely paralleled in current cinema. No other film this year had my eyes ricocheting across the frame as much or as often. More in The Notebook, shortly.
- A Christmas Tale [Arnaud Desplechin, 2008] # For my piece in The Notebook, coming shortly.