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Posts Tagged ‘Psycho

“We all go a little mad sometimes. Haven’t you?”*…

 

Director Steven Soderbergh lovingly cut Alfred Hitchcock’s Psycho together with Gus Van Zant’s shot-by-shot remake into a single film…

Marion Crane: Do you have any vacancies?

Norman Bates: Oh, we have 12 vacancies. 12 cabins, 12 vacancies.

See Psychos (“This… comes from a place of ‘total affection, openness, and honey bought directly from a beekeeper’”) here.  And browse “Salon des Refusés” for Soderbergh’s list of movies and TV shows seen, books read, and music heard in 2013, for his appreciation of Josef von Sternberg, and for gobs of other goodies…

* Norman Bates

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As we recall Norman’s adage that “a boy’s best friend is his mother,” we might spare a thought for comic genius Harold Clayton Lloyd, Sr.; he died on this date in 1971.  While your correspondent marginally prefers the extraordinary Buster Keaton, Lloyd has some real claim to being the finest physical comedian of the silent film era (even as his career extended to talkies and radio).  Like Keaton, Lloyd did his own stunts– many of them, breathtakingly dangerous.  Indeed, after 1919, he appears wearing a prosthetic glove, masking the loss of a thumb and index finger in a bomb explosion at Roach Studios.

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Written by LW

March 8, 2014 at 1:01 am

First Impressions…

 

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Via the always-rewarding Dangerous Minds, a simple– and simply wonderful– graduation film made by Jurjen Versteeg, who explains the idea behind his project:

Designed as a possible title sequence for a fictitious documentary, this film shows a history of the title sequence in a nutshell. The sequence includes all the names of title designers who had a revolutionary impact on the history and evolution of the title sequence. The names of the title designers all refer to specific characteristics of the revolutionary titles that they designed.

This film refers to elements such as the cut and shifted characters of Saul Bass’ Psycho title, the colored circles of Maurice Binder’s design for Dr. No and the contemporary designs of Kyle Cooper and Danny Yount.

This title sequence refers to the following designers and their titles: Georges Méliès – Un Voyage Dans La Lune, Saul Bass – Psycho, Maurice Binder – Dr. No, Stephen Frankfurt – To Kill A Mockingbird, Pablo Ferro – Dr. Strangelove, Richard Greenberg – Alien, Kyle Cooper – Seven, Danny Yount – Kiss Kiss Bang Bang / Sherlock Holmes.

 

As we remember to “tell ‘em what we’re going to tell ‘em,” we might recall that it was on this date in 1946 that the first Cannes Film Festival opened.  It had originally been scheduled for September, 1939 as an “answer” to the Venice Film Fest, which had become a propaganda vehicle for Mussolini and Hitler; but the outbreak of World War II occasioned a delay.

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A good scare…

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HW:  Do you find that audiences are frightened by different things now from the things that frightened them when you started, what, 30 years ago… 35 years ago, making films?

AH:  No, I wouldn’t say so, because after all they were frightened as children. You have to remember this is all based on “Red Riding Hood,” you see? Nothing has changed since “Red Riding Hood.”

In 1964, Huw Weldon (later, Director General of the BBC) interviewed Alfred Hitchcock for the BBC series Monitor

Part Two here

HW:  Have you ever been tempted to make what is nowadays called a horror film, which is different from a Hitchcock film?

AH:  No, because it’s too easy… I believe in putting the horror in the mind of the audience and not necessarily on the screen.

[TotH to Brain Pickings]

As we reach for our security blankets, we might recall that, though accounts of an unusual aquatic beast living in Scotland’s Loch Ness date back 1,500 years, the modern legend of the Loch Ness Monster was born when a sighting made local news on this date in 1933.  The Inverness Courier ran the account of a local couple who claimed to have seen “an enormous animal rolling and plunging on the surface.”  The story of the “monster” (a label chosen by the Courier editor) became a media sensation: London papers sent correspondents to Scotland and a circus offered a 20,000 pound reward for capture of the beast.

Photo “taken” in 1934, later proved a hoax (source)

B-ing all that they can B…

As the emphasis at American Movie Classics has slid every more completely from “Classics” to “American,” viewers have had to take consolation in channel originals like Mad Men and (the less-well-known, but arguably even better) Breaking Bad

Now, as though in penance, AMC has fielded “BMC”– “B-Movie Classics“– a web site on which one can stream the best of the worst…

Bikinis! Monsters! Motorcycles! Welcome to BMC, your new go-to site for B-movies by the likes of John Carpenter (Dark Star) and Roger Corman (Saga of the Viking Women). Now online and in full screen, watch unsung classics like Asylum by Psycho screenwriter Robert Block or Corridors of Blood with the inimitable Christopher Lee. Want to see international icons before they made it big? Check out Raquel Welch in A Swingin’ Summer or kung fu king Sonny Chiba in Terror Beneath the Sea. Looking for the unexpected? How about The Ruthless Four, a spaghetti Western starring Klaus Kinski.

Now updated with even more B-movies featuring femmes fatales (The Cat Girl), jungle adventures (Curse of the Voodoo) and talking ventriloquist’s dummies (Devil Doll). Whatever your B-movie taste, BMC has got you covered.

(As a special treat, check out Carnival of Souls– a B-Movie that transcends…)

As we salt our popcorn, we might recall that it was on this date in 1593 that the Vatican opened the seven-year trial Italian philosopher, mathematician and astronomer Giordano Bruno– whose championing of heliocentrism and an infinite universe landed him in the dock.  Bruno’s theory went beyond the Copernican model in identifying the sun as just one of an infinite number of independently-moving heavenly bodies; indeed, he was the first person (Western person, anyway) to have understood the universe as a continuum in which the stars one sees at night are identical in nature to the Sun…  Not a view comfortable to the Orthodoxy.  Bruno was convicted of heresy in 1600, and burned at the stake.  All of his works were placed on the Index Librorum Prohibitorum in 1603.

Giordano Bruno

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