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Sunrise: A Song of Two Humans


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I wasn't originally waiting on Stef's Faust but alas the college copy has never been returned. I now fear that I am dependent upon Stef's copy. I am now getting in line and will grab it from Stef when it finds its way back.

...the kind of film criticism we do. We are talking about life, and more than that the possibility of abundant life." -M.Leary

"Dad, how does she move in mysterious ways?"" -- Jude (my 5-year-old, after listening to Mysterious Ways)

[once upon a time known here as asher]

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  • 2 months later...

Diane is in the fold! Forward everything to her, Mando, i've PM'd her address.

There's some very exciting Murnau news being reported at Masters of Cinema:

We've only just heard about Los Angeles-based Flicker Alley, and Judex is only their second release, but they appear utterly committed to the preservation of classics and we think they should be strongly supported. They have Murnau's Phantom (1922) out next!

From the little i've seen of Phantom in short clips from features about the silent era, this is fantastic news. Proportionately likened to a film as genius as The Last Laugh kind of news!

I will be looking forward to this release.

-s.

In an interstellar burst, I am back to save the Universe.

Filmsweep by Persona. 2013 Film Journal. IlPersona.

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Where, oh where is Faust?

...the kind of film criticism we do. We are talking about life, and more than that the possibility of abundant life." -M.Leary

"Dad, how does she move in mysterious ways?"" -- Jude (my 5-year-old, after listening to Mysterious Ways)

[once upon a time known here as asher]

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hEH, oh man, you now have to wait until it gets back from Alabama. But if i were you i wouldn't wait. My version is only a VHS copy and i've seen it readily available in other places on DVD. Try the COD library and see if you can find it there.

-s.

In an interstellar burst, I am back to save the Universe.

Filmsweep by Persona. 2013 Film Journal. IlPersona.

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hEH, oh man, you now have to wait until it gets back from Alabama.  But  if i were you i wouldn't wait.  My version is only a VHS copy and i've seen it readily available in other places on DVD.  Try the COD library and see if you can find it there.

-s.

Ok smart guy. COD, aren't you the funny man. They only have it on VHS and it was never returned. Keep 'em coming hot shot.

BTW, Thanks for keeping me in the line up.

...the kind of film criticism we do. We are talking about life, and more than that the possibility of abundant life." -M.Leary

"Dad, how does she move in mysterious ways?"" -- Jude (my 5-year-old, after listening to Mysterious Ways)

[once upon a time known here as asher]

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Oops. Sorry it's coming to you by way of 'Bama, asher. Didn't mean to cut in line. I'm willing to wait if it needs to reroute. Anyhoo, thanks for letting me into the club. I need a serious education in silent films. I think I've seen maybe three in my whole life: The Hunchback of Notre Dame (in which I may or may not have fallen asleep), The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari (don't even think I saw the whole thing but German Expressionism in film=fascination), and, as of last night, Greed.

Looking forward to seeing these.

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Russell, am i reading you wrong or are you really trying to get Ash-Head in a ruckus with me?

Diane. Don't mind Mr. Wednesday. He's doesn't get much sleep at night and couldn't find a bar to brawl in last weekend. He lives in a posh house in the burbs but dreams of being the next Tyler Durden.

-s.

In an interstellar burst, I am back to save the Universe.

Filmsweep by Persona. 2013 Film Journal. IlPersona.

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I really liked Faust. Sunrise is amazing and stands apart, but Faust was pretty great in its own right.

Sunrise is my favorite Murnau. Don't worry about stef, he doesn't need any help at turning people against him wink.gif

...the kind of film criticism we do. We are talking about life, and more than that the possibility of abundant life." -M.Leary

"Dad, how does she move in mysterious ways?"" -- Jude (my 5-year-old, after listening to Mysterious Ways)

[once upon a time known here as asher]

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Oops. Sorry it's coming to you by way of 'Bama, asher. Didn't mean to cut in line. I'm willing to wait if it needs to reroute. Anyhoo, thanks for letting me into the club. I need a serious education in silent films. I think I've seen maybe three in my whole life: The Hunchback of Notre Dame (in which I may or may not have fallen asleep), The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari (don't even think I saw the whole thing but German Expressionism in film=fascination), and, as of last night, Greed.

Looking forward to seeing these.

Diane - not a problem. It is Stef's responsibility to remember these things. It has to come back to him eventually and then I can drive over and grab the DVD whilst I smack him in the head, Tyler Durden style. Not because I am a Tyler wannabe but because it's the only language he understands.

I don't remember who began the "share by mail" program but it is a good way to see somethings you might nototherwise get a chance to. Enjoy the viewing. The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari is on my list, if I can find it.

...the kind of film criticism we do. We are talking about life, and more than that the possibility of abundant life." -M.Leary

"Dad, how does she move in mysterious ways?"" -- Jude (my 5-year-old, after listening to Mysterious Ways)

[once upon a time known here as asher]

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Diane. Don't mind Mr. Wednesday. He's doesn't get much sleep at night and couldn't find a bar to brawl in last weekend. He lives in a posh house in the burbs but dreams of being the next Tyler Durden.

-s.

All I can say is...OH PAH-lease.

...the kind of film criticism we do. We are talking about life, and more than that the possibility of abundant life." -M.Leary

"Dad, how does she move in mysterious ways?"" -- Jude (my 5-year-old, after listening to Mysterious Ways)

[once upon a time known here as asher]

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  • 2 months later...

Well, I'm so late to this party it's not even funny, but I'll revive this thread anyway.

Caught Sunrise over the weekend and fell in love with it. For the first time in my (rather limited) history of viewing silents, I wasn't tempted to hit fast-forward or just stop altogether. On the contrary, I found myself rewinding to watch scenes again. What a treat this film is! I

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Caught Sunrise over the weekend and fell in love with it. For the first time in my (rather limited) history of viewing silents, I wasn't tempted to hit fast-forward or just stop altogether. On the contrary, I found myself rewinding to watch scenes again. What a treat this film is! I

...the kind of film criticism we do. We are talking about life, and more than that the possibility of abundant life." -M.Leary

"Dad, how does she move in mysterious ways?"" -- Jude (my 5-year-old, after listening to Mysterious Ways)

[once upon a time known here as asher]

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The rumors are confirmed: Sunrise is being rereleased on the big screen!... Or at least we know that it's being released in Chicago, but i would assume with the "restored print" that it will appear elsewhere as well. luxhello.gif

There's also some other great news from that link. Tati's Playtime, Von Trier's Five Obstructions and more!!

-s.

Edited by stef

In an interstellar burst, I am back to save the Universe.

Filmsweep by Persona. 2013 Film Journal. IlPersona.

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The rumors are confirmed: Sunrise is being rereleased on the big screen!... Or at least we know that it's being released in Chicago, but i would assume with the "restored print" that it will appear elsewhere as well. luxhello.gif

Sunrise on the big screen...I am as good as there.

...the kind of film criticism we do. We are talking about life, and more than that the possibility of abundant life." -M.Leary

"Dad, how does she move in mysterious ways?"" -- Jude (my 5-year-old, after listening to Mysterious Ways)

[once upon a time known here as asher]

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  • 4 weeks later...

After a cross-country odyssey, Sunrise and Faust are on their way home. Prepare the fatted calf.

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Interesting timing.

I saw Sunrise on the big screen last night, and it was yet again brilliant. This is my second screening of Sunrise, and the difference from DVD/TV screening to actual movie theater screening is well worth the eight-or-so bucks i paid to get in the door. I was really taken in with the imagery itself this time -- whereas last year when i first saw the film, i was so caught up in the storyline (blubbering mess of a man as i was) -- last night it was more about the sheer aesthetic power of the visual experience. What Hertenstein has called the "cardboard moon and the canvas sky" completely fooled me -- the heavy scenes of chiaroscuro in the foggy night of the marsh, while the man and City Woman meet underneath a gorgeous country moon, were mesmerizing. And this was shot with a sense of melancholy, as the City Woman made her conniving plans with The Man. I've read somewhere before that Murnau had a lot of fun in creating the City Woman, in playing on her carnal nature and creating her in the likeness of a feminine version of his previous demon creature Nosferatu... And that Murnau also loved making Janet Gaynor's The Wife into a madonna... which in the final scenes of the movie makes a whole lot of sense. We see the City Woman slithering away from The Man, and the long pretty hair of The Wife, seen for the first time hanging down and covered with a veil. With the Nosferatu in mind it was also easy to recognize The City Woman in the marsh seen in this light (or lack thereof): her pale white skin, her creeping in the shadows at night, her long fingers (think of Max Schreck), the way she holds her prey, and the kiss (bite) she gives the man on his neck.

The BFI Film Classics book goes even further than this in the comparison of the two women, though, and it actually has a chapter entitled The Madonna/The Whore. "The farm girl... is a familiar figure of supreme good and is associated with melodrama, where as (The City Girl) is a nebulous figure tied to modernity." Much like the anime and techno-phobic films of our day (think The Matrix and Terminator), Murnau, thru the city experience, was tying modernity and technology to immorality, while placing the childlike innocence at the forefront of redemption, seen at its peak when Janet Gaynor places forgiving kisses on her husband's cheek in a church setting.

The remnants (minus Asher) of the CAFKNANFaSDBG shared in a delightful dinner at the end of the show, and one of the things that came up was expressionism vs. reality, and we tried to figure out exactly what Bazin might have thought about Sunrise. Regardless, one of the truths of reality is that truth will equal reality, and somewhere in that continuum (as has been pointed out on these boards before) is where transcendence occurs. I must say that the truth of the struggling man, who vacillates between the danger and intrigue of the City Woman, and the comfort and love and "good meal" of his wife, seems to hit upon a general truth in life that we as men are aware of. And when the church scene is thrust in our face, we as Christians (especially married Christian men) witness a scene like this in a much different way than a non-believer would. We see it as the hope of our faith in God waking us up to the reality of the plan He's set in place for us. And i think it tugs at the heart just a little bit more to see a fallen man turn, and not only choose the right thing but be granted forgiveness in the process.

Here's where you've got to be careful. I don't think that Murnau planned on having a shadow of the cross streak across the bed of The Wife. Yet it clearly does. And when The Man, at the end of the film falls down and cries, it's true that at this point he's kneeling at the foot of the cross. It might be a bad reading to make this into a pure Christian film, but it wouldn't be a bad reading to say that one had a purely Christian experience in watching it.

-s.

Edited by stef

In an interstellar burst, I am back to save the Universe.

Filmsweep by Persona. 2013 Film Journal. IlPersona.

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Indeed. Terrific post.

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The remnants (minus Asher) of the CAFKNANFaSDBG shared in a delightful dinner at the end of the show, and one of the things that came up was expressionism vs. reality, and we tried to figure out exactly what Bazin might have thought about Sunrise. Regardless, one of the truths of reality is that truth will equal reality, and somewhere in that continuum (as has been pointed out on these boards before) is where transcendence occurs. I must say that the truth of the struggling man, who vacillates between the danger and intrigue of the City Woman, and the comfort and love and "good meal" of his wife, seems to hit upon a general truth in life that we as men are aware of. And when the church scene is thrust in our face, we as Christians (especially married Christian men) witness a scene like this in a much different way than a non-believer would. We see it as the hope of our faith in God waking us up to the reality of the plan He's set in place for us. And i think it tugs at the heart just a little bit more to see a fallen man turn, and not only choose the right thing but be granted forgiveness in the process.

Here's where you've got to be careful. I don't think that Murnau planned on having a shadow of the cross streak across the bed of The Wife. Yet it clearly does. And when The Man, at the end of the film falls down and cries, it's true that at this point he's kneeling at the foot of the cross. It might be a bad reading to make this into a pure Christian film, but it wouldn't be a bad reading to say that one had a purely Christian experience in watching it.

-s.

Man, I was incredibly disappointed I couldn't make it to see Sunrise and, especially, to hang out afterward.

You know how I don't like to stroke your ego Stef but I have to say, your comments were nothing short of beautiful. Sunrise had such a profound affect on me that it could very well be the movie talking wink.gif In Sunrise one can actually feel the torment and shame of the husband and the loving embrace of the wife as she offers forgiveness. You can hear the shell of a hard heart crack to once again experience a beat.

God has blessed each person with their talents no matter how they chose to use them. Sometimes it only makes sense to me that we experience something profoundly spiritual in many works of art, whether intended or not. It seems natural to see the need for salvation in the characters of most movies but when a movie moves beyond that and we see the (sometimes unintentional) inner struggle for repentance in a fallen man, how can it not tug at our soul. Witnessing the reminder of unconditional love and forgiveness is soul stirring.

The idea of the

...the kind of film criticism we do. We are talking about life, and more than that the possibility of abundant life." -M.Leary

"Dad, how does she move in mysterious ways?"" -- Jude (my 5-year-old, after listening to Mysterious Ways)

[once upon a time known here as asher]

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