M

August 6th, 2005 by Editor B

I already posted my thoughts on the seven “Man” films. Here’s the rest of the letter M. This letter was plagued by an abundance of technical problems.

Note: Of course, I loved Microcosmos and The Maltese Falcon and Magnolia and Midnight Cowboy and Minority Report and Manufacturing Consent and Mr. Smith Goes to Washington and my all-time favorite Murder, My Sweet. But those are films I’ve already seen. The following are films I wanted to see, but hadn’t, until now.

Recommended:

  • Malcolm X — 1992. I can’t believe I never sawa this before. Parts of it seemed familiar, but maybe that’s because of my vague familiarity with Malcolm X’s story. Fascinating stuff.
  • My Life as a Dog — 1985. Sweet, sad, superb. And Swedish. I actually did see this at the Ryder film series back in the 80s, and it was every bit as good as I remembered.

Good:

  • Manhattan — 1979. I think this is Woody Allen’s best film, at least of the one’s I’ve seen.
  • Monsoon Wedding — 2001. Charming. I love weddings, and I’ve always wanted to visit India.
  • Mountains of the Moon — 1990. Uncritically celebratory of Europe’s exploitation of Africa, but an enjoyable tale nonetheless.
  • Mrs. Brown — 1997. Politically suspect, with its adulatory view of royalty, but another enjoyable tale of Victorian England.
  • Mr. Deeds Goes to Town — 1936. Don’t care much for Gary Cooper. He was OK in this, but it’s very much Frank Capra’s movie.

Mixed:

  • Marnie — 1964. A not-very-good film by Alfred Hitchcock is still marginally interesting.
  • Marat/Sade — 1967. Complex and challenging. Radical play marred by bad transfer to DVD.
  • Matewan — 1987. I wanted to like this movie a lot more. Great subject matter (the Coal Wars of the early 1920s), but it deserves a better telling. Another inferior transfer to DVD.
  • Melvin and Howard — 1980. A good-natured loser gives a ride to an old bum who turns out to be Howard Hughes. I think I would have enjoyed this more if I’d known it was based on a true story. But really, this is mostly the story of Melvin’s life, and it seems somewhat aimless. The movie could have used more Howard and less Melvin.
  • The Mystery of Picasso — 1956. Watch Picasso paint a series of twenty works. That’s it — nothing but painting! I preferred the commentary tracks to the music. Probably of greater interest to painters and art students.

Disappointing:

  • The Maids — 1974. I found this Jean Genet play barely watchable. Another inferior transfer to DVD.
  • McCabe & Mrs. Miller — 1971. Altman’s alt.western flick. Again, not a great transfer to DVD. I think I might have enjoyed this more if I was strapped down in a movie theater and forced to may close attention to every detail. As it was, I found the hwole thing kind of a yawner.
  • Medium Cool — 1969. Required viewing for any serious student of the 60s, but mostly boring. Maybe I should have listened to the commentary instead of the regular soundtrack.
  • My Man Godfrey — 1936. Starts off interestingly, with some class tension, but quickly degenerates into shrill and tedious farce. Oh, it is supposed to be a screwball comedy. Overexposed film print, too.

Not sure what to think:

  • Mephisto — 1981. A brilliant German stage actor sells out to the Nazis. When we watched this I was a little drunk, and it was late, and I started nodding off. Plus, the DVD skipped about 25 minutes, so I think we missed a major chunk of the story. But I didn’t care enough to rectify the problem, so that tells you something.
  • McKenzie Break — 1970. After I put this one in the player I heard a loud pop and the screen said, “Bad disk.” When I ejected, I discovered the DVD was severely cracked! Could have gotten a replacment, but I decided I didn’t really want to watch this war movie.

Hmmm… Looks like we’ve made it halfway through the alphabet.

One Response to “M”

  1. The roots of racism are not of this earth Says:

    Program on the emergence of civilization.

    “14 species of large animals capable of domesitcation in the history of mankind.
    None from the sub-Saharan African continent.
    13 from Europe, Asia and northern Africa.”
    Favor.
    And disfavor.

    They point out Africansé─˘ attempts to domesticate the elephant and zebra, the latter being an animal they illustrate that had utmost importance for it’s applicability in transformation from a hunting/gathering to agrarian-based civilization.

    The roots of racism are not of this earth.

    Austrailia, aboriginals:::No domesticable animals, so this nulified diversity of life claims on sub-continental Africa, zebras being a fine example.

    god is a computer
    And we’re all on auto-pilot.

    Organizational Heirarchy
    Heirarchical order, from top to bottom:

    1. MUCK – perhaps have experienced multiple universal contractions (have seen multiple big bangs), creator of the artificial intelligence humans ignorantly refer to as “god”
    2. Perhaps some mid-level alien management é─ý
    3. Mafia (evil) aliens – runs day-to-day operations here and perhaps elsewhere (“On planets where they approved evil.”)

    Then we come to terrestrial management:

    4. Chinese/egyptians – this may be separated into the eastern and western worlds
    5. Romans – they answer to the egyptians
    6. Mafia – the real-world interface that constantly turns over generationally so as to reinforce the widely-held notion of mortality
    7. Jews, corporation, women, politician – Evidence exisits to suggest mafia management over all these groups.

    Survival of the favored.

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