“Maybe he will let himself be seduced, and we will reap our vengeance on him.”
Much has been said about “pure cinema,” the cinematic approach of formalism to accomplish narrative and thematic goals. Classical Hollywood cinema brought with it a brand of cohesiveness in storytelling, an emphasis of plot over image (in most cases) that has made pure cinema more of an anomaly than a true practice.
Pier Paolo Pasolini’s drastically quiet Teorema could be considered an exercise in pure cinema. There are, purportedly, less than 1,000 words spoken in the entire film. This story of a young man coming into an affluent household and seducing every Continue reading Teorema (Theorem) (1968) Movie Review
Pier Paolo Pasolini’s film The Hawks and the Sparrows begins in one of the most extravagant and astounding ways possible: with the opening credits being song triumphantly by singer Domenico Modugno. The film is a religio-political comedy, but this opening song sets it up, quite tongue-in-cheek, as a travel epic.
The film follows a father (played by famed clown Toto) and his son (Ninetto Davoli), who are laborers on their family farm. The film immediately feels like a sibling film to Pasolini’s Accattone, as both contemplate Continue reading The Hawks and the Sparrows (1966) Movie Review
“The bourgeoisie has never hesitated to kill its children”
As drenched in infamy as it is, Pier Paolo Pasolini’s final film Salo remains a dedicated feature of film criticism, with articles written to this day about the film’s place in the canon of cinema.
Quite possibly the most debauched film in history, Salo, or the 120 Days of Sodom, is a narrative of Continue reading Salo or the 120 Days of Sodom (1975) Movie Review
We first see Jocasta (Silvana Mangano) giving birth to Oedipus, from afar as if we are voyeur’s looking in on a sex act (a fitting introduction given the Freudian psychological product of Sophocles’ Oedipus Rex). Next, we see her in a pleasing closeup. As her baby nurses from her, her smiling face recedes into a blank look that borders on concern, before her delight returns. Only, this delight seems lessened. Her face looks as though she has seen something, an omen of some kind.
Of course, the dramatic irony inherent in this opening is intentional. Director Pier Paolo Pasolini imbues the tonal undercurrent of the film with Continue reading Oedipus Rex (1967) Movie Review
“How do you want your funeral?”
“With my friends laughing, and if anybody cries, he pays for the drinks.”
“And on your stone?”
“‘Try it yourself'”
Accattone, the directorial debut of Pier Paolo Pasolini, has been called the last film of Continue reading Accattone (1961) Movie Review