Sunday, November 21, 2010
King of Comedy; Guns
Ed here: I wouldn't go as far as Mark Kermode. I don't think King of Comedy is Martin Scorese's best film but I do think it's a brilliant and misunderstood masterpiece.
Mark Kermode The Guardian U.K. King of Comedy Cast: Jerry Lewis, Robert De Niro, Sandra Bernhardt 1982
When I interviewed Martin Scorsese for this Sunday's Observer New Review, he described Michael Powell's 1960 shocker Peeping Tom as "one of my all-time favourite movies" – a film that brilliantly dramatises the "pathology of cinema" and the "dangers of gazing". Decried by critics and hounded out of cinemas on its initial release, the film became a lost classic, and was only rediscovered after Scorsese helped get it into the New York film festival and co-financed its rerelease two decades later. Peeping Tom is now considered the pinnacle of Powell's career.
As for Scorsese, it seems to me that the director's own greatest film is still one of his least applauded. Ask any casual fan to name their top Scorsese flicks and the chances are they'll come up with titles, such as Taxi Driver and Mean Streets, that came to define the cutting edge of American cinema in the 70s; or Raging Bull, a searing portrait of the life of Jake La Motta, featuring Robert De Niro at his body-changing best. Or what about Goodfellas, which remains so popular that a possible small-screen prequel is in the offing?
for the rest go here:
Kevin Burton Smith commented on my post about guns. This demonstrates exactly what I was talking about in an America gone gun crazy. Thanks, Kevin
Kevin Burton Smith said...
The couple that own the local comic shop near here have, on three different cases in the last eight years, hauled out their guns to defend their store from being burglarized in the middle of the night. In each case, they were in the store (in the middle of the night?). They've killed two of them (he got one, she got one) and initiated a high speed chase that ended with them pulling a gun and forcing the guy off the road.
Evidently, they prefer sitting in their store at night and killing people to putting a couple of bars on their windows.
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Maybe they're trying to send burglars a message.
I guess they'd be the first independent business owners in history to stay after hours.
I used to work with a guy who would park his car around the block, leave his windows open, turn off all the lights and sit in the dark with a gun hoping someone would break in so he could shoot them.
Dramas about comedians are fascinating, the behind the curtain look at the angst that goes into the "spontaneity" that makes us laugh. And yet, rather than detract from the effect of performance, as does (for me, anyway) knowing how a magician works his tricks, knowing what goes into the act actually enhances the magic of the comic's tricks - his timing and vocal inflections.
King of Comedy gave me new appreciation of both DeNiro and Jerry Lewis, as well, of course, of Scorcese. It's a masterpiece.
Y'now, I live near a couple of comic stores and I always see the owners in them at all hours of the night. SOmetimes past midnight and sometimes with customers in there. Iv've even seen one open late in the middle of a blizzard.
I think maybe comedy flourishes in hard times, that the gloomier things seem the more reassurances we seek that life is a carnival. Maybe instead of the world ending with a whimper, it'll end with a guffaw.
Although not his best films, King of Comedy and After Hours are my two favorite Scorcese films. They are the least pretentious of his films.
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