Monthly Archives: February 2021

RIP Larry Flynt (1942 – 2021)

Larry Flynt was the publisher of American pornographic magazine Hustler, founded in 1974 in the slipstream of the sexual revolution.

I show you an interview from 2014.

In the opening splash you see — at the right hand side — the controversial cover of a woman who is fed to a meat grinder.

Flynt was a rebel. Many pornographers were. That’s what used to make pornography so interesting during the early modern period up until the sexual revolution.

RIP Jean-Claude Carrière (1931 – 2021)

The Phantom of Liberty, the toilet scene

Jean-Claude Carrière was a French novelist and screenwriter famous for scripting The Discreet Charm of the BourgeoisieThe Phantom of Liberty and The Unbearable Lightness of Being.

I give you the toilet scene from The Phantom of Liberty, it makes you wonder if Buñuel scripted it alone or he asked Carrièret to assist him.

RIP Giuseppe Rotunno (1923 – 2021)

The Stendhal Syndrome 

Giuseppe Rotunno was an Italian cinematographer with a long career, working with many great directors, check your regular sources.

One of these films is The Stendhal Syndrome , the last feature film he worked on.

There is a full version of The Stendhal Syndrome on YouTube, a film I had not seen before which turned out to be very enjoyable.

I especially liked the opening scene at the Uffizi in Florence with The Birth of Venus by Botticelli, Caravaggio’s MedusaLandscape with the Fall of Icarus by Pieter Bruegel the Elder, Paolo Uccello’s The Battle of San Romano and The Duke and Duchess of Urbino by Piero della Francesca.

When Asia is walking towards the Uffizi, you can already see the distinctive style of Rotunno’s cinematography, already invoking the fainting of Asia once she stands before the Bruegel painting.

After that, when she falls into the Icarus painting, she kisses a grouper fish. Beautiful!

The film is full of these little details, in her hotel room hangs a copy of The Night Watch by Rembrandt. She walks into this and finds herself on the streets, blurring the lines between fact and fiction.

RIP Christopher Plummer (1929 – 2021)

Christopher Plummer was a Canadian actor best-known for his part in The Sound of Music.

Harrison Bergeron (1995). Christopher Plummer can be seen from 30:04 onwards.

In my universe, Plummer played parts in The Imaginarium of Doctor ParnassusThe Man Who Would Be King and Harrison Bergeron, an admirable adaptation of the wonderful short story by Vonnegut.

In Harrison Bergeron, Plummer is John Klaxon. Klaxon is the benevolent tyrant of the intelligent elite that gives the masses the illusion that they rule.

There seem to be quite a lot of differences with the short story, but I have not had time to check them out.

Update: I re-read the short story, which is only 6 to 7 pages long so there is barely opportunity to compare. In the short story the parents of Harrison are watching television, their son having been arrested some time before. The parents are watching television. All of a sudden the son is seen on television interrupting a ballet performance. The son speaks to the people, imploring them to free themselves from their handicaps. He ‘marries’ a ballerina and is subsequently and tragically shot.

The 2009 short film 2081 follows the short story faithfully.

The film version, with Harrison becoming part of the elite, is reminiscent of V for Vendetta, one of the best films of the 21st century.