This is a new feature being added to the blog. Each week, on Monday, I will offer some recommended viewing for the week. There will be a mixture of DVDs, downloads, and stuff you can watch for free and where to find it. I hope everyone will check in every week for these recommendations and check out a few of them, if they can, and maybe start a thread about the films on our message board. Happy viewing!
Brigitte and Brigitte (1966) by Luc Moullet. One of my goals in Shooting Wall is to expose more people to the films of Luc Moullet. He is one of the most interesting, funny, and unique filmmakers to emerge in the last fifty years and is barely known in this country. Brigitte and Brigitte is his first feature and is an excellent starting point to his highly referential, cinematic, minimalist comedies. This film is available on DVD and can be obtained through Netflix or Facets.
Daisies (1966) by Vera Chytilova. One of the more bizarre and original films to come out of the Czech New Wave, Daisies is a funny, freewheeling, and surreal feminist masterpiece from Vera Chytilova. The film is available on DVD and can be obtained through Netflix or Facets.
Shadows in Paradise (1986) by Aki Kaurismaki. The first film in Finnish director Aki Karusimaki's Proletarian triology and a good introduction to the filmmaker's wry and deadpan style. The film and the trilogy are part of the Criterion Eclipse series and are available on DVD from Netflix and Facets.
The Headless Woman (2008) by Lucrecia Martel. Argentine director Lucrecia Martel's most recent and best film to date; if you haven't seen this film, then see it now. One of the best films in years from one of the most interesting directors working today. Available in DVD on Netflix and Facets.
Region 2 Pick of the Week:
Duex Fois (1968) by Jackie Raynal. An odd, difficult, yet engrossing film from France in the late 1960s. Raynal was a member of the Zanzibar film group, which featured the likes of Philippe Garrel, Pierre Clementi, and Serge Bard. She isn't nearly as well-known as Garrel, but this 1968 film is worth checking out. It is available on Region 2 DVD with English subtitles, which can be obtained through Facets or downloaded at the Pirate Bay.
Free Movie of the Week:
Mes Petites Amoureuses (1974) by Jean Eustache. Eustache's follow-up to the mammoth The Mother and the Whore is less extreme, but just as remarkable. A film about youth, but played in a minimalist style reminiscent of Robert Bresson. Exposing more people to the films of Jean Eustache is also one of my goals with Shooting Wall. This film is rare, but a subtitled version is available to watch in 10 minute segments on You Tube. I highly recommend everyone checking this out.
Download of the Week:
L'amour fou (1969) by Jacques Rivette. Rivette's mammoth (nearly 4 1/2 hour) masterpiece about the decline of a marriage is essential viewing for fans of the director. In many ways, it is a transitional film for Rivette, it doesn't have the magical and dreamy feel of some of Rivette's more well-known works (Celine and Julie Go Boating, Duelle, etc.), but an ambitious film full of interesting visuals, acting, and an essential portrait of artists in late '60s Paris. The film is long and hard to find, but is available for download in three easy to digest parts on the Pirate Bay. The quality isn't perfect, but it is well worth it to see this rare and important film.
Check back next week for more recommendations!