Tag Archives: Fritz Lang

Leave it to Nazis to screw things up.

51. M (Fritz Lang, 1931)

This poster is simply glorious, perfectly worthy of this glorious film. Those Germans know their shit.

I have a fascination with the Weimar Republic. Basically post-WWI Berlin was a wonderfully decadent, cultured, sex-crazed, artistic mecca. Then the Nazis had to come in and fuck it up. Jerks. I find the brazen sexuality of that era to be fascinating, simply because very few cultures in history have ever been so open and tolerant of sexuality(of pretty much every kind). Fucking interests me OK.

Anyway this film isn’t really about that, but it is a product of that place and era, so it seemed relevant, and the poster is very reflective of that time.

This film is wonderful. It’s the earliest film I know of that I would consider¬† film-noir. It’s dark, suspenseful, powerful, and compelling. Within 10 minutes I was crying. Peter Lorre gives an incredible all-world performance as a tormented child-molester/killer, I mean by the end I almost felt sorry for him. It’s absolutely fascinating.

Lorre gives this incredible speech at the end where he pleads directly into the camera for mercy. There’s an absolutely insane Nazi propaganda film from 1940 called “The Eternal Jew“, which among other things calls Albert Einstein a pseudo-scientist, Charlie Chaplin a Jew, and compares the migration pattern of rats to those of Jews. They also show this scene as proof that Jews are child molesters. The fact that Lorre is not Jewish, and that the scene is from a fictional movie, doesn’t seem to matter when there is propaganda to be made.

On filmaffinity.com I gave the film a 10/10. It drags a little bit in the middle, but it’s a small complaint.

Brigitte Bardot’s ass is next to Godliness.

45. Contempt (Jean-Luc Godard, 1963)

Now this is a poster. The French sure don’t screw around. Great font, good color, unique artwork. This is something I would be proud to have in my house.

This is a great film, the I didn’t enjoy while watching it, but it lingered with me, and the more I thought about it, the more I realized it was damn good. I felt the same way about Rashomon.

I think what I didn’t like about the film while viewing it was how talky and philosophical it was. It tricks you into thinking it’s about movie making but then it swerves with a ton of dialogue about life. So I kept waiting for resolution of the plot, when the plot was really secondary to the interactions of the characters. I also didn’t understand why Brigitte Bardot‘s Camille all of a sudden turns so hateful towards her husband. He seems like a decent dude, and her turn towards bitchiness came out of nowhere.

I am not even sure I understand any of this at all now, but the presence of Fritz Lang dropping knowledge, Jack Palance freaking out multiple, and Brigitte Bardot’s bare ass is certainly enough to compensate for my lack of understanding.

Plus the movie looks astonishing. It was filmed in the Mediterranean so there is these amazing shots of the sea, and every shot is so brightly lit, it melts the heart, it’s pretty much the most beautiful summer day you’ve ever experienced. Plus it’s shot in that gorgeous 60’s Technicolor.

Oh and it’s going to be one of the first wave of titles released by Criterion on Blu-Ray. I read on a message board where someone described how this film on Blu-Ray will be like seeing the face of God. One can only hope. This might be the reason I get a Blu-Ray player.

On filmaffinity.com I gave the film 8/10. It’s definitely something I want to revisit, and try and make sense of.