by Sam Juliano
The new year is upon us. The past year at WitD featured a spectacularly-successful comedy countdown that attracted page views, comments and some of the best-written pieces in the site’s history. For the upcoming months we will settle into the usual site routine, which features writers and regular posts appearing on annointed days. The site is indepted to Allan Fish, Jim Clark, Jaimie Grijalba, Bob Clark, Joel Bocko and Maurizio Roca for their outstanding posts and regular contributions to the comment threads. We plan to move forward with enthusiasm and will complete all existing series, barring some unforeseen divergence in the prospective plans.
The situation with the links will remain contingent with the time available, as can be seen with the eratic way this has been negotiated in recent months. As time moves on, it does admittedly become more of a challenge to post them, and I will let my schedule determine how to proceed to that end.
A candle will always be lit on this thread from this moment on for Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Connecticut, and will be acknowedged on every future MMD. For those who have not yet signed the John Garfield petition, a project launhed by Barbara LaMotta and the late Lori Moore (and passionately promoted by Dee Dee) the link to do so is on the sidebar.
The past week (typically for this time of year) was devoted towards re-viewings of the late year prestige films with faily and friends that has not yet seen some titles. This venture brought us to Lincoln and The Impossible once again.
Otherwise, we saw one new release and a Film Forum restoration of a revered British masterpiece:
Not Fade Away ** (Sunday afternoon) Edgewater multiplex
Black Narcissus (1947) ***** (Saturday night) Film Forum
I also watched Dennis Potter’s The Son of Man on the basement plasma. Compelling, revisionist take on Christ’s final days.
NOT FADE AWAY is suffused with suffocating period detail right down to the cold cuts being eaten with scooped mayonaise from the jar. What we see is that every character young and old chain smokes, that JFK was assasinated, that the Beatles, Stone and Dylan were the rage and that young people were socially conscious and eager to form rock bands. But the tinsel dressing has no intrinsic value and the movie is a narrative dead-end. Seemingly made for nostalgia, but it does nothing with it. John Magaro is impressive in the lead.
I am re-printed last week’s links, and have updated a good number:
There is a fabulous new site trailer from Tony d’Ambra up at FilmsNoir.net: http://filmsnoir.net/articles/new-filmsnoir-net-trailer.html
Judy Geater is leading up at Movie Classics with her superlative review of Vincente Minelli’s “Meet Me in St. Louis”: http://movieclassics.wordpress.com/2013/01/03/meet-me-in-st-louis-vincente-minnelli-1944/
Jon Warner’s fantastic ‘Re-cap of 2012′ is leading up at Films Worth Watching: http://filmsworthwatching.blogspot.com/2013/01/my-recap-of-2012-old-releases.html
John Greco’s lead post is the enthralling Twenty Four Frames’ 3rd Annual 10 Best Classic Films Watched during 2012: http://twentyfourframes.wordpress.com/2013/01/04/24-frames-3rd-annual-10-best-classic-films-watched-for-the-first-time/
Sachin Gandhi has posted a spectacular ‘Best Films of 2012′ post at Scribblings and Ramblings: http://likhna.blogspot.com/2012/12/best-films-of-2012.html
At Speaking From The Heart Laurie Buchanan offers up an incomparable look in the ‘rear view mirror': http://holessence.wordpress.com/2013/01/01/a-glimpse-in-the-rearview-mirror/
Richard R.D. Finch offers up a wonderful year-end post at that northern California mecca for cineastes: http://themovieprojector.blogspot.com/2012/12/yearend-odds-and-ends.html
Roderick Heath has posted his brilliantly comprehensive “Confessions of a Film Freak,” which sizes up the year, at Ferdy-on Films: http://www.ferdyonfilms.com/2013/confessions-of-a-film-freak-2012/17230/
David Schleicher has a terrific review up on “Zero Dark Thirty” at The Schleicher Spin: http://theschleicherspin.com/2013/01/06/no-ruth-my-love-in-zero-dark-thirty/
Pat Perry speaks eloquently about the ‘unspeakable tragedy’ at Doodad Kind of Town: http://doodadkindoftown.blogspot.com/2012/12/this-is-not-post-i-had-planned.html
Samuel Wilson has crafted a terrific essay on Sergio Corbucci’s spaghetti western “Companeros” at Mondo 70: http://mondo70.blogspot.com/2013/01/sergio-corbuccis-companeros-vamos-matar.html
At Vermillion and One Nights Murderous Ink has posted a spectacular piece on “Evangelion After Fukushima” (Part 2): http://vermillionandonenights.blogspot.com/2012/12/evangelion-after-fukushima-part-2.html
At Lost It at the Movies Movie Man Joel Bocko offers up a splendid screen capo display of “Leap of Faith”: http://thedancingimage.blogspot.com/2012/12/leap-of-faith.html#more
Shubhajit Lahiri has penned an extraordinary capsule on Rivette’s “Celine et Julie Goes Boating” at Cinemascope: http://cliched-monologues.blogspot.com/2013/01/celine-and-julie-go-boating-1974.html
Fimmaker Jeffrey Goodman has several updates at The Last Lullaby, including his latest a splendid quartet of capsules that includes “The Breaking Point,” “Senna” and “The Edge of the World”: http://cliched-monologues.blogspot.com/2012/12/beau-travail-1999.html
David Schleicher has written a creative essay on Jacques Audiard’s “Rust and Bone” at The Schleicher Spin: http://theschleicherspin.com/2012/12/23/evolutionary-melodrama-and-triumph-of-the-human-spirit-in-rust-and-bone/
Richard R.D. Finch is leading up with his spectacular comedy countdown essay on “Sullivan’s Travels” at The Movie Projector: http://themovieprojector.blogspot.com/2012/12/sullivans-travels-1942.html
Ed Howard’s magnificent review of Jean Rollin’s “Fascination” is leading up at Only the Cinema: http://seul-le-cinema.blogspot.com/2012/12/fascination.html
Craig Kennedy has posted one of his greatest interviews ever at Living in Cinema, with Samantha Barks, the lovely young actress who plays Eponine in “Les Miserables”: http://livingincinema.com/2012/12/20/samantha-barks-flies-the-flag-for-eponine-in-les-miserables/
At Overlook’s Corridor Jaimie Grijalba continues his intricate study of Chilean cinema: http://overlookhotelfilm.wordpress.com/2012/12/23/chilean-cinema-2012-16-stefan-vs-kramer-2012/
Terrill Welch’s fabulous new post “Reef Bay Morning Experienced – West Coast Seascape Oil Painting” leads up at the Creativepotager’s blog: http://creativepotager.wordpress.com/2013/01/06/4163/
Weeping Sam’s latest post at The Listening Ear is a terrific combined piece comparing similar aspects in “Lincoln” and “Django Unchained”: http://listeningear.blogspot.com/2013/01/lincoln-django-unchained.html
At The Blue Vial Drew McIntosh is leading up with a superb screen cap presentation of Otto Preminger’s “Whirlpool”: http://thebluevial.blogspot.com/2012/12/whirlpool.html
At Patricia’s Wisdom the ever-spirited proprietor offers up “10 Steps to Finding Your Happy Place-My Gift to You”: http://patriciaswisdom.com/2012/12/10-steps-to-finding-your-happy-place-my-gift-to-you/
At Radiator Heaven J.D. La France offers up a fantastic essay on “On the Road”: http://rheaven.blogspot.com/2013/01/on-road.html
Dean Treadway’s new post “Cinema Gallery: 30 Scenes of Loneliness” is essential for all passionate film lovers. It’s over at Filmicability: http://filmicability.blogspot.com/2012/11/blog-post_6.html