Kubruary! ...yeah, we're stretching it. - Can't Stop the Movies
Can't Stop the Movies
27Jan/120

Kubruary! …yeah, we’re stretching it.

Andrew:  We’re approaching our two year anniversary here at Can’t Stop the Movies, and one of my favorite things to do every week is revisit old films from a specific director.  So far I’ve focused on directors who may be well regarded but whose works are not particularly widespread.  There are few people who will say Atom Egoyan or Bela Tarr are less then great directors, but the average cinemagoer, even those particularly well-traveled, may have difficulty naming even three of their movies.

The other thing is, as much as I’ve enjoyed looking at Atom Egoyan or David Fincher, there’s something a bit less satisfying about watching the works of someone who is still alive.  I feel like I get a better grasp of the overall tone and meaning behind the works of Krzysztof Kieslowski or Bergman since I can take their career as one whole piece instead of wondering what one film will lead to next (in the case of Egoyan I can make an educated guess, I have no idea what Fincher is doing from film to film).

The next directorial stop on this showcase is someone who has been long regarded as a totalitarian of the cameras frame.  Someone whose relentless planning and execution earned him a now solid reputation as one of the most commanding directors to have lived.  A man who directed a successful comedy, no matter how dark, which is a first for this director showcase.  Finally, a visionary who knew that the only way to win the Cold War was by pie fight, and then cruelly hid the film stock of that momentous ocassion never to be seen again.

Yes, it’s time to tackle the films of Stanley Kubrick.  This is going to be very interesting for me because, similar to Fincher, he’s a man I respect more than love.  I’ve giggled at the sheer memory of “precious bodily fluids” and every time I revisit Dr. Strangelove my love grows stronger.  The same applies to 2001, a film I grow more thoughtful watching every time.  But the diminishing returns on Full Metal Jacket and A Clockwork Orange are too great, films I didn’t enjoy much to begin with and become more interested in their lack of interesting details than anything they’re successful at doing.

Kubrick passed leaving a divisive body of work that has given me much to think about even when I don’t like the results.  At least, this time, I’ll be sharing in the moments of discomfort, as well as respect, with my writing partner in real-time.  This will be a couples analysis, with Amanda joining me every week while we look at Kubrick’s films and try to weather through A Clockwork Orange together.

I suppose we may get some interesting commentary and mileage cuddling and watching Eyes Wide Shut together, but who knows?  Maybe after watching all of his films in a row we’ll discover that Eyes is actually about an autistic middle-aged man obsessed with Sailor Moon.

Only time will tell.  Amanda, how fare you going into this analysis?

Amanda:  I am more than excited for Kubuary (which is what I've decided to call this venture), Andrew. Kubrick has made some of my favorite movies (Dr. Strangelove and The Shining), but has also made some films that have left me ambivalent (Full Metal Jacket) or just generally frustrated (A Clockwork Orange. I have some choice words about this movie).

At this point, I think everyone is aware of Kubrick's fanatical dedication to his vision, whether that be taking endless takes of a shot or just inflicting psychological torture on his actors. It's almost amusing to think about those factors while watching his movies.

Kubrick can be called a lot of things, but predictable is not one of them. He has never limited himself to a genre or a formula and has brought about a completely new vision to the genre. It's something to respect since not many directors (except for Von Trier) are willing to be so diverse in his or her repertoire. Even though he has passed on, I'm not sure if I can find a definitive tone or meaning behind his movies (though some patterns may emerge), which just highlights his versatility and talent.

As for Eyes being about an autistic man's obsession for Sailor Moon, as long as I don't have to see Kubrick dressed up as Sailor Venus or anything, I'll try to weather it.

Not a creepy conclusion at all.

Stay tuned next Friday as Amanda and Andrew blaze a trail through Kubrick's The Killing!

Kubrick with text

Posted by Andrew

Comments (0) Trackbacks (0)

No comments yet.


Leave Your Thoughts!

Trackbacks are disabled.