Monday, January 17, 2011

Larry Chadbourne's Two Eyes

Since my own two eyes were not nearly enough to see and evaluate all the repertory/revival film screenings here on Frisco Bay, I'm honored to present local filmgoers' lists of the year's favorites. An index of participants is found here.

The following list comes from cinephile Larry Chadbourne, also of the Film On Film Foundation
Ten Best Rep/Revivals of 2010:

1. The Bad Sleep Well. VIZ Kurosawas. In a year of several tributes on Kurosawa's centennary, this one (sometimes compared to Warners exposés) stood out, and reminded me instead of Stroheim, and late Lang.

2. The Boy With Green Hair, PFA Loseys. Despite some disagreement on how the restorers reproduced the original color, my favorite re-discovery of the series.

3. California Split, Roxie. Not even one of Altman's best, but it brought back the loss to modern American cinema of its greatest talent.

4. The Crimson Pirate, PFA Lancasters. How often do we get to see real Technicolor? Like being a kid on Saturday afternoon, once again.

5. The Godfather, Part III, DVD. Wanted to see something by (or with) Sofia Coppola after Somewhere. Could this Part's lower reputation have to do with the touchy subject of The Vatican's relation to the Mafia?

6. L'Heureuse Mort, Castro. The highpoint of this year's Silent Film Festival.

7. The Housemaid, Castro, Asian American Film Festival. Hopefully there will be more such revivals of classic Korean cinema.

8. Ladies of Leisure, PFA Capras. Especially for Marie Prevost and Lowell Sherman. This series was enlivened by Joe McBride's scholarly presentations.

9. The Light in the Piazza, Stanford. Packard's revival, in conjunction with the Mountain View staging of the musical, which I also saw, allowed me to catch up with an underrated British/U.S. co-production I'd missed since 1962. Though director Guy Green may be worth further study, the key names are the still-vibrant Olivia de Havilland, and producer Arthur Freed, who was partially responsible for the success of the best Vincente Minnelli musicals.

10. Maedchen in Uniform, 1958 version, Castro, Frameline. An example of a remake which arguably improves on the original. Made 27 years later and set 15 years or more earlier than the Weimar classic, this story of school discipline turns into a more sweeping indictment of the whole span of Prussian obedience and militarism, at a time when the Germans were starting to examine their more recent past.

For the record, I saw about 195 older films, 150 in a theatre, 45 on video.

1 comment:

  1. CALIFORNIA SPLIT "not even one of Altman's best"? Oh, Larry, Larry...