Movies Are the New Pornography

by |
08/08/2008 11:00 AM |
  • Film Forum’s French Crime Wave series, which starts today and continues through early September, is a pretty deft selection of cinéma de qualité gloss and Nouvelle Vague genre romps. Films screening on the same day are generally double features, but things start off with Rififi, tonight through Sunday. Which is a one-trick movie, but the trick is the most archetypal heist sequence in cinema. Which is sorta the point — the best of these movies take sweaty-palmed American pulp fiction and distill them into stoic, stylized works derived from an ideal of film noir, often embodied by understated baddass movie stars. (I’m thinking especially of the Jean-Pierre Melville movies in the series — you will never in your life feel cooler walking out of a movie than when you see Le cercle rouge.) And on Monday — I’ll talk about this a little more when the time comes — the series will show Alain Corneau’s Serie noire, an adaptation of Jim Thompson’s A Hell of a Woman, and probably the only really truly successful cinematic Thompson adaptation.
  • Yesterday through Sunday, Anthology is showing the four major features — the masterpiece La Promesse, Rosetta, The Son and L’Enfant — by Jean-Pierre and Luc Dardenne; consider it an essential part of your cinematic adaptation.
  • And Elliott Gould is at BAM tonight and tomorrow, for what are sure to be marvelously mumbly Q&As following screenings of his quintessentially giddy/melancholy performances in Little Murders and The Long Goodbye… as I’m typing this I see that both Q&A screenings are sold out. Wow. Awesome work all around, Brooklyn.