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Everything posted by Russ

  1. I dunno, big guy. You can apply that hypothetical to all of their circumstances, can't you? Maybe this would have played out differently if they were already wed, and maybe this would have played out differently if they weren't in the remote Caucasus, where they're effectively forced to spend the many days following the events in each other's presence. For me, the connection is this: relationships and marriages continue, in large part, based on habits. Habits of speech and thought and fighting and forgiveness. All of that's on display in this film in uniquely stark terms. Here's something else: if you met this couple, would you counsel them to get married, knowing what you know about them? Flipping it around, I think the film could be a useful one to show another engaged couple prepared to embark on marriage. In short, I'm gonna nominate it, and we can hash out whether it's within the scope of our list as part of the process.
  2. Hilariously, we'll probably forget to nominate it.
  3. Yeah, but if the underlying purpose of paying special attention to films about marriage is to talk about how these films get at the nature of love and its preservation in a lifelong, committed relationship, then isn't this film one you want to have available as a talking point?
  4. I know. I tend to not like children's books that adults may "get" or enjoy more than children, but those two Klassen books are genius. I love how those two books respect the food chain, in contrast to most of the rest of the animal-personification genre. Plus, while you'd think THIS IS NOT MY HAT would just be a rehash, it's actually funnier than its predecessor. The disconnect between the narration and the action in the pictures never fails to get laughs out of my kid.
  5. Russ

    Holy Motors

    Because I know you wanted to watch this again:
  6. You're exactly right, Tyler. While the first moment of conflict is the "inciting event" that opens the gulf, it's that moment that really cements their estrangement. The potential life-taking danger of the first moment is upped by actual life-taking danger, and Alex is MIA when she needs him most. It's a fantastic moment in part because it builds on the conflict that Nica's had to deal with throughout the trip as regards being seen as an equal who can take care of herself. While each couple has to develop and manage their own private language of duty and help, there is that whole other category of situations in which it's not paternalism or outdated chivalry that motivates us, but simple concern for another's well-being. Alex isn't just looking ahead when she slips-- he's entered that sort of sulky state where, in his mind, she's on her own. It's the added texture of this scene that really makes me admire Loktev's relationship-observation skills. I can think of lots of times where I've been the guilty party in a simple offense against my wife, but my own stubbornness or self-centeredness holds me back from taking responsibility and asking for forgiveness. Then, instead of dealing simply with that one act, in the cloud of that smallness I cause or allow some other offense, and dig the hole immeasurably deeper. I watched the film again last night. I wonder if there were any changes made to the film from when I saw it in Toronto in 2011; there seemed to be some shots that I remembered differently.
  7. Yep. Ali thinks that one's too pomo, but I enjoy it. Plus, we've got a Sesame Street Golden book from the 70s where Grover pulls pretty much the same schtick.
  8. Russ

    Django Unchained

    Rather than rehash the whole redemptive violence discussion, we could just link to the halcyon days of our multi-page discussion of KILL BILL, VOLUME ONE, which is a pretty good discussion but for the fact that I repeatedly come across as a jackass. When I walked out of HOLY MOTORS last Friday night, the first thing that occurred to me is that regardless of all the loose thematic ends which resist tucking-in and neat arranging, movies like that one will always get the presumption of greatness from me if for no other reason than the sheer and unalloyed joie de cine on display. These guys for whom you can tell the consumption and creation of film-images is a purpose-giving ecstasy. Tarantino might not have any other reason to be compared to Carax, but they share that quality. Which is a long way around saying I'm pretty excited for this film.
  9. What did you get them? I'll have to fill in individual titles later. Daisy, our 2 3/4 year-old, is getting the two Elephant and Piggie books we don't own, but which she has loved when we've had them out from the library. One of them is Happy Pig Day. Among present-day picture-book writer-creators, I think Mo Willems is pretty much in his own league.
  10. Last week my wife and I met for lunch and went to something she's been telling me about for years-- the 50% off sale at Scholastic. They open their actual warehouse for non-education professionals and you can browse through their entire stock of hardcovers and softcovers for all ages. We half-filled a standard-size shopping cart with $200 worth of books, discounted to $100, which gave us an additional $25 off. So, $200 in books for $75. So, everybody's getting a fairly substantial book stack this year.
  11. You speak of BARBARA? It's worth your dogged persistence. I've spent the last few weeks watching Petzold's other films, apart from the DREILEBEN contribution, which I don't think I can readily get. YELLA is almost just as amazing as BARBARA. I finally get to see HOLY MOTORS tonight. I'm gonna try to talk my oldest daughters into watching A KID WITH A BIKE with me tomorrow night, and I have the library's copy of CARNIVAL OF SOULS on loan.
  12. I know completely how you feel. A couple of years ago, when my oldest two daughters were preteens, I was gearing up to show them THE UNBEARABLE LIGHTNESS OF BEING and it was absolutely essential to me that we get through Kundera's novel beforehand.
  13. A seriously unserious question from someone who hasn't read THE HOBBIT: do I and my kid only need to get the first 1/3 of the book read, or more or less than that?
  14. Russ

    Dr. Who

    All right, if there was one book you could buy a fledgling nine year-old Dr. Who fan, what would it be?
  15. I wish they would have nominated him, if for no other reason than so he and his date could have done the red-carpet crap.
  16. Russ

    Moonrise Kingdom

    Boy, this is timely. I was just talking about that scene with my oldest daughter this weekend, and then we rewatched the movie this weekend. I'll post something more expanded later, but in short, I think it's just a show of total confidence on Anderson's part to even go here. Depictions of nascent adolescent sexuality are the third rail of cinema art, partly because of the exploitative tendencies and partly because it's so ridiculously hard to do anything remotely insightful. It would have been so easy for Anderson to elide that whole matter, but he makes us squirm in a way that I think is meaningful in that moment, as we imperceptibly find our perspective switching from the kids to the parents. One minute we're frolicking unselfconsciously on the beach, and the next we're paunchy grouches believing the worst of those kids in their underwear.
  17. I nominate Nicolas Roeg's DON'T LOOK NOW. http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0069995/ (will fill in the rest)
  18. Title: ELENA (2011/2012) Director: Andrey Zvyagintsev Running time: 109 minutes http://www.imdb.com/title/tt1925421/ I'd really like to see us consider ELENA, in spite of the release date issues. See, e.g., http://www.imdb.com/title/tt1925421/releaseinfo I guess this is the wave of the future for small arthouse releases. It played some festivals, like Toronto, in 2011, then played Sundance in 2012. It had a brief theatrical release in August of this year, but then was available on DVD/Netflix streaming within two months after that. To that end, it's widely available to be seen, and moreso than some older films we'll be considering. I'll make the remainder of my case in the discussion thread.
  19. It gives me great pleasure to second THE BROOD.
  20. Anodos, were you nominating the miniseries or movie version of SCENES FROM A MARRIAGE? (The miniseries! The miniseries!)
  21. I nominate Eric Rohmer's _____ IN THE AFTERNOON (1972). Criterion's telling me that "LOVE" belongs in that blank, but Annie Clark and I prefer "CHLOE." I also nominate Rossellini's VIAGGIO IN ITALIA (1953) and his STROMBOLI TERRA DI DIO (1950). (I'll add the other stuff in a little while.)
  22. Russ

    The Kid with a Bike

    Right. I picked them up within the sale, then my wife will give them to the kids to wrap for me and I will easily manage a look of genuine delight, albeit not surprise, on December 25, circa 5:56 a.m.
  23. Russ

    The Kid with a Bike

    Every time I think I'm out of DVD-buying mode, the brothers pull me back in. I just bought ROSETTA and LA PROMESSE last week at B&N to be given to me for Christmas. I think the New Yorker version of THE SON is serviceable, though. Is that out-of-print, Jeff?
  24. BTW, has anyone gifted you a copy of David McPhail's Sisters yet?
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