For those countless Michael Haneke fans who have been
putting off attending screenings of his films at the Harvard Film Archive and
the Museum of Fine Arts, don’t wait any longer. There
are a couple more shows scheduled at the MFA this weekend. Dismayed by the poor turnout for the series.
one programmer who chose to remain anonymous said he despaired of the current audience
for serious cinema in Boston, let alone the United States
Many of those who meet Austrian
filmmaker Michael Haneke in person are surprised at how jolly and gracious he
is given the cold-blooded brutality and perversity of his films. Myself, I was
surprised to see how much he resembled Lloyd Schwartz, Pulitzer Prize winning Phoenix classical music
critic and a jolly and gracious fellow himself.
As I was
pondering what to go as to the many Halloween parties I haven’t been invited to,
it occurred to me -- this is how we can save the democratic system. Instead
of another one of those boring, repetetive and frankly embarassing “debates,” why
not have the candidates dress up as their favorite movie monster and let the
voters pick the scariest? I have some suggestionsto start them
At this point
I began to suspect that maybe these dropped calls were not entirely accidental.
Maybe he was getting defensive or even angry. Judging from his response when I
finally called back, the comparison to “In the Mood for Love” seemed to touch a
nerve. However, when I got into more sensitive areas, like whether the hard
core sex in the film might drive first time actress Wei Tang into the loony
bin, as was the case with Maria Schneider in “Last Tango in Paris,” there were
no more disruptions (the static was still pretty bad and, let’s face it, the
guy’s English isn’t as fluent as his filmmaking).
interviewed Ang Lee about his new film “Lust, Caution,” an adaptation of a
short story by the revered Chinese auther Eileen Chang He was on a cell phone,
riding or maybe even driving through New
York while talking to me. This is an arrangement I
don’t recommend. The reception was frequently garbled — maybe on both ends,
because Lee’s answers were sometimes — and every ten minutes or so cut off.
ago I made the mistake of playing pundit when “Time” magazine asked me for my opinion on Ridley Scott’s “Thelma
and Louise.” “Ten years from now,” I intoned, “it will be seen as a turning point.”
So much for prophecy. And they never asked my opinion about anything ever
So I was
encouraged a couple of weeks ago when
Judith Warner in her “New York Times” blog “Domestic Disturbances”