Great Hollywood editor Richard Marks passes away at age 75, leaving behind an impressive body of work that includes editing The Godfather 2 and Apocalypse Now.
Actress Sondra Locke died Nov. 3, 2018 at the age of 74. Locke will be most likely remembered as the long-time former girlfriend of Clint Eastwood, acting in six of his seminal films during his heyday of the 1970s, 1980s. I will remember her for her turn in a little seen and practically forgotten chiller from 1972 A Reflection of Fear, where she plays a young mentally disturbed woman named Marguerite who suffers from serious Daddy (played by a pre-Jaws Robert Shaw) issues, that come to the fore when estranged father returns to Marguerite’s coastal town in the company of a sexy girlfriend, played by Sally Kellerman. It is a creepy, get-under-your skin film brimming with sexual tension and one heck of a knock-down twist ending.
A few days ago it was Nicolas Roeg (Nov. 23) and today cinema loses another legend, with the passing of Bernardo Bertolucci (Variety). Bertolucci was at the forefront of International cinema of the 1960s and 1970s, managing to breakthrough into more mainstream acceptance, with films such as Last Tango at Paris, Last Emperor, and The Sheltering Sky, while still maintaining a formal elegance and complexity. The two films, made back to back in 1970, were The Spider’s Stratagem and The Conformist. Essays on both films can be found here and here.
One of the most important and inventive directors (and cinematographers) of his generation, Nicolas Roeg, has died at age 90.
New book by Constance Dilley, Ph.D.
Reception: 5:00–6:30 p.m. in conjunction with Éléphant at the Cinémathèque québécoise, 335 Boul. de Maisonneuve E., Montréal, Québec
Jason Luckerhoff (professor, UQTR)
Claude Martin (honorary professor, U de M and associate professor, UQTR)
Constance Dilley, author (a.k.a. Connie Tadros)
Conference at NYU Steinhardt: Friday May 31st – Sunday June 2nd
The annual conference Music and the Moving Image encourages submissions from scholars and practitioners that explore the relationship between the entire universe of moving images (film, television, video games, iPhone, computer, and live performances) and that of music and sound through paper presentations. We encourage submissions from multidisciplinary teams that have been pooling their knowledge to solve problems or come up with a new perspective regarding music and moving images. The Keynote Speaker is TBA.
Abstracts or synopses of papers (250 words) should be submitted by no later than December 15, 2018.
The program committee includes Frank Lehman of Tufts (author of Hollywood Harmony: Musical Wonder and the Sound of Cinema, Oxford Univ. Press), Jessica Getman of University of Michigan (“A Series on the Edge: Social Tension in Star Trek’s Title Cue.” Society for American Music 9:3. Cambridge University Press), Joakim Tillman of Stockholm University (co-editor of Contemporary Film Music: Investigating Cinema Narratives and Composition, Palgrave Macmillan), and co-editors of Music and the Moving Image, Gillian B. Anderson (Rosita at the Venice Film Festival, Composing for the Cinema, Music for Silent Film 1892-1929: A Guide); and Assoc. Professor, Director & Chair, Ron Sadoff (The Moon and the Son / Co-editor of Routledge Companion to Screen Music and Sound). This year’s conference will run for three days, from Friday May 31st – Sunday, June 2nd, with sessions until Sunday evening. The conference will run prior to the NYU Film Scoring Workshop in Memory of Buddy Baker (June 3rd – June 14th, 2019).
About Muestra de cine de Lanzarote
Muestra de cine de Lanzarote is an independent film festival, organized by Asociación de Cine Tenique. It’s a small scale but rigorously curated annual film festival that taking place on the unique volcanic Canary island of Lanzarote. Under its new artistic director (since 2018), art historian Javier Fuentes Feo, the festival aims to increase the visibility of a type of cinema that expands and develops our way of looking at the world in which we live, and encourages us to fine-tune our sensibility.
The unassuming star who was never afraid to deflate his own ego, Burt Reynolds, died of a cardiac arrest at age 82 on September 6, 2018. Reynolds was cut in the rugged handsome mold, the ‘Marlboro’ man, and although he was born in Michigan, developed his most iconic roles (Sam Whiskey, White Lightning, Gator, Smokey and the Bandit) as a ‘good old boy’ from the South. Reynolds was at heart a character actor who could play ladies men but also tough urban types (Fuzz, Shamus) and excelled when asked on the odd occasions to stretch his dramatic acting ability (Deliverance, The Longest Yard). Reynolds was much closer to the iconic Hollywood stars of the 1940s, 1950s (Cary Grant, Humphrey Bogart, Errol Flynn) than the actors who followed him. A unique persona, the likes of which we will probably never see again.
The American philosopher Stanley Cavell, born on September 1, 1926 in Atlanta, Georgia, died at age 91 on June 19, 2018. Cavell was best known as a philosopher who helped “humanize” the field of philosophy, bringing a sense of the world as experienced rather than philosophy as a “discipline” by expressing ideas through ordinary language. Cavell also chose to write on “ordinary” films (i.e. popular rather than arthouse) such as screwball comedy (Pursuits of Happiness: The Hollywood Comedy of Remarriage) and melodrama (Contesting Tears: The Melodrama of the Unknown Woman). Perhaps his most well known film book, his first, _The World Viewed: Reflections on the Ontology of Film), reads as his attempt to bring Andre Bazin’s empathetic and generous ontology of film into a more direct philosophical worldview. Cavell was a big influence on a generation of film thinkers, many trained in philosophy rather than film, who offered a different approach to film than the political, cultural, social and ideological theories that dominated the halls of academia from the 1970s on. Film philosophers and writers like Ian Jarvie, Victor F. Perkins, Nöel Carroll, Gregory Currie, Berys Gaut, George Wilson, David Bordwell, Gilles Deleuze, Cynthia Freeland, Murray Smith, Ian Tan, and Daniel Frampton. His influence will, I think, be lasting. I know that whenever someone —and it can be a student as much as a seasoned writer— says that a film is great because it “made them feel like they were right there with the character” I cringe, and then take out my trusty Cavell quote as my rebuke to such easy platitudes: “The camera is outside its subject as I am outside my language” (The World Viewed, 2nd ed., 127). Thanks Stanley.
Sad news for Canadians and film buffs, to learn of the passing of Margot Kidder at age 69. Born in Yellowknife, Kidder is best known for her role as Lois Lane opposite Chris Reeves’ Superman, but horror fans will remember her for her salty mouthed character in Black Christmas, her outstanding dual role in Sisters and the Kathy Lutz in The Amityville Horror.