Saturday, September 10, 2011

1966 ... What a Year!

So, on to 1966.

This is a good year, though personally there were 3 truly outstanding films and some not so outstanding films. Before the cinematic successes of the year, let's remind ourselves of what transpired in 1966 elsewhere:
  • Luna 9 lands on the moon. Hooray!
  • While Venera 3 crashes on Venus. Hooray!
  • First televised Parliament session in the UK, which coincides with the public realising that they had voted in a bunch of lying, thieving scumbags.
  • Of course, another important thing happens in Malaysia.

What about on the screen? Were there any hidden gems? Too many classics to mention? Well ... not really. This was a top-heavy year (in my humblest of opinions), but it still had a couple of interesting films, such as:
  • Blow-up, in which Vanessa Redgrave is photographed from different angles.
  • Fahrenheit 451, in which Julie Christie is absolutely gorgeous.
But ...

1966 had 3 absolute classics of the world cinema, which are The Bru's Top 3 films:

3- Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf (dir: Mike Nichols; wri: Ernest Lehman)
Admittedly this is quite polarising and it is fair to argue that it is just about an old couple, well, arguing. And yes it screams for acting awards. And, yes the story is driven solely by the dialogue. There is a lot of telling and not enough showing. But that dialogue (courtesy of the original play by Edward Albee) is absolutely brilliant. Its vitriol oozes from the screen. Elizabeth Taylor and Richard Burton pour their hatred and love for each other with every utterance. It is one of the most cringeworthy films ever. You are likely to miss many lines because of you will be thinking to yourself: "Did they just say that?" over and over again.

2- Persona (wri & dir: Ingmar Bergman)
Considered Bergman's masterpiece and appears near the top of every respectable 'greatest films ever' list, Persona is a rare beast: is it horror, drama, erotica or something else entirely? Or all of those combined? Perhaps. But one thing that is for sure is that it is a very rich film, which appears completely different with every viewing, in line with the circumstances in which you're watching it. I'm still not entirely sure what really happens, but I'm more than happy to find out more clues by watching it countless more times in the future.

1- The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly (dir: Sergio Leone; wri: Age, Scarpelli, Luciano Vincenzoni & Sergio Leone)
This needs to introduction, no explanation and no justification.

1966 ... what a year!

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