Filmmakers on Other Filmmakers

Discuss films and filmmakers of the 20th century (and even a little of the 19th century). Threads may contain spoilers.
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MichaelB
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Re: Filmmakers on Other Filmmakers

#101 Post by MichaelB » Thu Sep 05, 2013 10:39 am

Stanley Kubrick didn't often publicly praise filmmakers, but Krzysztof Kieślowski was a notable beneficiary.

And Kieślowski in turn was a strong champion both of his lesser-known compatriots (notably his teacher Kazimierz Karabasz) and of Ken Loach.

And Loach in turn was a huge fan of Miloš Forman and Jiří Menzel, and has championed A Blonde in Love and Closely Observed Trains on many, many occasions as being possibly the two most important influences on his own work.

Come to think of it, Lindsay Anderson was an even bigger fan, not just of those two but also numerous other filmmakers. He played a major role in securing Andrzej Wajda international recognition in the 1950s (and, as a spin-off, organised the first British screenings of the work of Roman Polanski and Walerian Borowczyk, when they were pretty much unknown), and the new BFI Flipside release Sleepwalker reveals that he was also extraordinarily helpful towards both Bill Douglas and Saxon Logan - and doubtless quite a few others.

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Moe Dickstein
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Re: Filmmakers on Other Filmmakers

#102 Post by Moe Dickstein » Thu Sep 05, 2013 1:28 pm

domino harvey wrote:We're still doing anti-Bogdanovich schtick on this board? I thought that shit went out with the old guard
I'm anything but anti-Bogdanovich, I'm a huge fan - I was just tweaking the one I love.

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NABOB OF NOWHERE
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Re: Filmmakers on Other Filmmakers

#103 Post by NABOB OF NOWHERE » Thu Sep 05, 2013 1:39 pm

Moe Dickstein wrote:
domino harvey wrote:We're still doing anti-Bogdanovich schtick on this board? I thought that shit went out with the old guard
I'm anything but anti-Bogdanovich, I'm a huge fan - I was just tweaking the one I love.
Apparently young people call it twerking nowadays

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flyonthewall2983
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Re: Filmmakers on Other Filmmakers

#104 Post by flyonthewall2983 » Sat Sep 14, 2013 8:19 am

I'm more interested in articles about conversations between artists than one's opinion on another. There are a few with musicians I've read (particularly, one with Robert Fripp interviewing John McLaughlin and a conversation between Roger Waters and Trent Reznor) that were pretty good. Seeing what they have in common, or what differences they might have always interest me.

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domino harvey
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Re: Filmmakers on Other Filmmakers

#105 Post by domino harvey » Thu Dec 19, 2013 11:30 pm

Image

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bottled spider
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Re: Filmmakers on Other Filmmakers

#106 Post by bottled spider » Fri Dec 20, 2013 1:39 am

God that's beautiful. So he still had Dreams, Rhapsody in August, and Madadayo ahead of him. It never registered before how old he was when he made those last three.

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ex-cowboy
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Re: Filmmakers on Other Filmmakers

#107 Post by ex-cowboy » Fri Dec 20, 2013 10:50 am

That is lovely to see, sad though in that Kurosawa's eyesight was so poor by this point he needed help to finish his films and yet he felt he had so much still to do, but nonetheless very touching. However, I can't help but be reminded by this letter of Woody Allen's belief (revealed in an interview with S&S) that his is just improving with every film, that Match Point etc. are better than Annie Hall, Manhattan (though I know he's always hated that film).

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Re: Filmmakers on Other Filmmakers

#108 Post by Numero Trois » Fri Dec 20, 2013 2:37 pm

Speaking of which, here is Orson Welles on Woody Allen:
Orson Welles wrote:He is arrogant. Like all people with timid personalities, his arrogance is ­unlimited. Anybody who speaks quietly and shrivels up in company is unbelievably ­arrogant. He acts shy, but he’s not. He’s scared. He hates himself, and he loves himself, a very tense situation. It’s people like me who have to carry on and pretend to be modest. To me, it’s the most embarrassing thing in the world—a man who presents himself at his worst to get laughs, in order to free himself from his hang-ups. Everything he does on the screen is therapeutic.
I suppose I'd have to revisit Allen's movies to make up my mind if I agree. Either way, its hard to imagine a more brutal statement than that one.
criterion10 wrote:On a related side note, I found this video on YouTube the other day, where Quentin basically dismisses both Kubrick and Welles.
To me it sounds like Tarantino was being facetious there. But then again, given his juvenile biases....

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Gregory
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Re: Filmmakers on Other Filmmakers

#109 Post by Gregory » Fri Dec 20, 2013 3:33 pm

It's hard to get over the irony of Welles calling someone out for arrogance. And what could be more arrogant than presuming to psychoanalyze someone he didn't even know, and from the sound of it introverts in general at the same time? If Welles was pretending to be modest, he didn't do a good job of it.
Allen obviously based a lot of his humor on self-deprecation, but he never seemed very introverted or shy to me—there's often a difference.
Orson Welles wrote:If I don’t like somebody’s looks, I don’t like them. See, I believe that it is not true that different races and nations are alike. I’m profoundly convinced that that’s a total lie. I think people are different. Sardinians, for example, have stubby little fingers. Bosnians have short necks. ... I never could stand looking at Bette Davis, so I don’t want to see her act, you see. I hate Woody Allen physically, I dislike that kind of man.
Unfortunately, not everyone can be a specimen of corpulent perfection like Welles.

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Roger Ryan
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Re: Filmmakers on Other Filmmakers

#110 Post by Roger Ryan » Fri Dec 20, 2013 3:48 pm

Welles did work with Allen briefly on CASINO ROYALE (1967). Keep in mind, this quote is from a private conversation with Henry Jaglom (who adored Allen) and was not intended for publication. It's possible that Welles was just trying to get a rise out of his lunch companion...then again, it's a pretty miserable thing to say and one of the most offensive things found in Jaglom's new book.

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Drucker
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Re: Filmmakers on Other Filmmakers

#111 Post by Drucker » Fri Dec 20, 2013 3:51 pm

To give my two cents, that Jaglom/Welles book features many unfortunate take-downs by Welles. It seems that good judgement often got the better of him during the Bogdanovich interviews, and it seems many of his meaner statements are redacted or taken back by Welles in that book. My guess is that by that late in his life, Welles had perhaps lost the ability/sense to withhold such negative comments. (which if, perhaps he though about twice, he would've realized how rude and often nonsensical he was being).

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Gregory
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Re: Filmmakers on Other Filmmakers

#112 Post by Gregory » Fri Dec 20, 2013 4:04 pm

I read a little of the book but quit because I got tired of all the bitchiness, dubious gossip, and character assassination. And I know that many enjoy books about Hollywood for exactly those tidbits, but I think if someone wants to dish dirt and call people out, it helps to be witty and insightful about it.
So I can't comment about the whole book, and maybe I missed out on some actual insight into Welles himself and his creative life sprinkled in among all the awful things he has to say about people in Hollywood from decades ago—usually people like Allen that Welles barely knew. He knew the conversations were being recorded but just couldn't or wouldn't stop talking shit.
I know his life was in bad shape by then and I do have some empathy, but good grief.

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ex-cowboy
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Re: Filmmakers on Other Filmmakers

#113 Post by ex-cowboy » Fri Dec 20, 2013 4:33 pm

This is purely and utterly conjecture, but could Welles' particular bitterness towards Allen purely be down to the antisemitism suggested by the earlier quotes about Allen's appearance and his brand of filmmaking? Whilst I'm not saying that Allen's appearance or work is indicative of 'Jewish-ness', it is common that you hear people referring to his films as possessing a certain 'Jewish' type of comedy. Not being particularly knowledgable on Jewish culture I can't say how true this label is, but it seems like it could be a possible reason for Welles' dislike of someone who, as has been pointed out, he barely knew. I'm not a particularly big fan of Welles tbh, F for Fake is the only one of his films that I've actually liked (Kane, Touch of Evil and Lady from Shanghai being the others I've seen), so I don't know how much proof there is of Welles' views on the matter, is anyone aware of any antisemitism?

Briefly going back to the Godard strand, despite liking some of Truffaut's films, I do find Godard's attack on his work quite funny (seemed to have lost the webpage with the actual quote) and am completely on the Godard side of the whole argument. I absolutely love Godard's work, of all eras and he is one of my favourite filmmakers, whereas with Truffaut, whilst I find some of his work enjoyable, his career seems overshadowed by the fact that he spent so long criticising old-fashioned and conservative cinema and then spent almost all his career making, in the light of his contemporaries, pretty conservative films.
Last edited by ex-cowboy on Fri Dec 20, 2013 4:38 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Gregory
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Re: Filmmakers on Other Filmmakers

#114 Post by Gregory » Fri Dec 20, 2013 4:37 pm

From another recent thread:
Polybius wrote:I'm going to invoke Bill Hicks here: you guys are overthinking it. [Welles was] just an asshole.
(side-note: I've watched/listened to everything by Hicks I can get my hands on at least once, usually more, but still can't place this reference.)

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Roger Ryan
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Re: Filmmakers on Other Filmmakers

#115 Post by Roger Ryan » Fri Dec 20, 2013 4:48 pm

ex-cowboy wrote:...so I don't know how much proof there is of Welles' views on the matter, is anyone aware of any antisemitism?
Welles was definitely not antisemitic (he identified too much with Shylock!) nor was he racist (despite his wacky views on the Irish when talking to Jaglom), so I don't see that as motivating his dislike of Allen. Since Jaglom himself is Jewish, I doubt Welles would have spent as much time with him as he did if he had an antisemitic streak.

I suspect Welles was frustrated by Allen's critical and commercial success that allowed him to release a film a year whereas Welles seemingly couldn't find backers to help him realize his own work.

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knives
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Re: Filmmakers on Other Filmmakers

#116 Post by knives » Fri Dec 20, 2013 5:38 pm

Also I believe Welles was partially raised by a Jewish doctor and always portrayed Jewish characters with greater empathy than most at the time. I suspect his comments were just to be bitchy for the sake of bitchiness.

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Mr Sausage
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Re: Filmmakers on Other Filmmakers

#117 Post by Mr Sausage » Fri Dec 20, 2013 6:06 pm

Welles seems to've confused Allen's onscreen persona with the real person. I don't know a lot about Allen, but I do remember reading that he was different in real life and quite popular growing up.

Welles' comments at the end of his rant are well observed, just not necessarily about Woody Allen.

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Re: Filmmakers on Other Filmmakers

#118 Post by MongooseCmr » Thu Jan 02, 2014 11:53 am

knives wrote:Also I believe Welles was partially raised by a Jewish doctor and always portrayed Jewish characters with greater empathy than most at the time. I suspect his comments were just to be bitchy for the sake of bitchiness.
I'd go with this. Everett Sloane played by far the most sympathetic character in Citizen Kane, and if Welles is being honest than he must have hated working with him, because Sloane had quite the nose if I remember correctly.

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Roger Ryan
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Re: Filmmakers on Other Filmmakers

#119 Post by Roger Ryan » Thu Jan 02, 2014 1:17 pm

MongooseCmr wrote:
knives wrote:Also I believe Welles was partially raised by a Jewish doctor and always portrayed Jewish characters with greater empathy than most at the time. I suspect his comments were just to be bitchy for the sake of bitchiness.
I'd go with this. Everett Sloane played by far the most sympathetic character in Citizen Kane, and if Welles is being honest than he must have hated working with him, because Sloane had quite the nose if I remember correctly.
Welles commented to Bogdanovich that he felt Sloane diminished his impact as an actor when he later had cosmetic surgery to reduce the size of his nose. Welles also related how KANE screenwriter Herman J. Mankiewicz (Jewish himself) commented that it was bad form to have two Jewish actors in one scene without a Gentile present (referring to the interview scenes between Bernstein and Thompson the reporter)!

If any more proof be needed, Welles went on record to say that "after the Holocaust, we're all Jewish" to express where one's sympathy should lie. Probably the least antisemitic statement I can imagine someone saying.

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