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Author Topic: Sergio Leone opus and french serious critic  (Read 18298 times)
aaronson
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« on: February 19, 2003, 07:13:50 AM »

I recently found in my own library a "Cahiers du Cinema"  (it's a french very intellectual film-magazine )  with  a colored picture in the cover: Wood and De Niro masked with white handkerchief during the diamond-robbery scene. Inside the magazine some colored pictures from the film and a big one of Sergio himself very fat and tired. Also a long and complete interview with many explainations,comments and criticisms.It's very rich and interesting.  It's also the first time that French serious critics begin considering Sergio as an important Director . Before that they putted him at the same level than ...Terminator ?   After OUATIA they compare him with Coppola, Cimino and others famous film makers. So the cover of "Les Cahiers" is an honor for OUATIA fan's

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shorty larsen
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« Reply #1 on: February 19, 2003, 01:12:44 PM »

Yes, I live in Paris (yet I'm not french) and I know quite good the frenchs.

They have a couple of good movies and that's all.

Frenchmen prefer the intelectual cinema over the "visual" cinema. In french movies you can see a 30 minute long scene in a room with two persons who talks about the rain.

That's cinema for them....

Frenchmen are "cultured", but it's not enough o make good movies.

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cigar joe
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« Reply #2 on: February 19, 2003, 04:53:03 PM »

Check out "La Feme Nikita". It was not bad.

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shorty larsen
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« Reply #3 on: February 21, 2003, 02:04:52 PM »

Yes, but you're talking about Luc Besson, the most "hollywood" cinema director of all fench filmakers.

He did "Leon" (The Proffessional in US I think) too, Fifht Element and "Jeanne d'Arc".

As you see those movies are not in the european/intelectual style.

Anyway, is Besson a good filmaker? Mmmmm....

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« Reply #4 on: March 21, 2003, 07:31:02 AM »

Hey guys! i'm french, and let me say that there are a lot of great great french movies... not as much as great american movies for a good reason: there is less movies in france than in us.

Of course, french people often tink that their movies are the best, and they do a lot of "films d'auteurs", but most of the french population look TF1: Die Hard, Predator, Spiderman....
So don't take the french to seriously, they are exactly the same as americans.

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« Reply #5 on: March 21, 2003, 07:33:51 AM »

I lost my track myself in all this exitment...

I have this "cahiers du cinema". You know, this is  a very good magazine (and the news cahiers are still very good). They were the first (in france) to write that they like directors like scorsese, lucas, spielberg, tim burton... and Leone.

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Il Buono
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« Reply #6 on: March 21, 2003, 10:13:30 AM »

It's also the first time that French serious critics begin considering Sergio as an important Director . Before that they putted him at the same level than ...Terminator ?   After OUATIA they compare him with Coppola, Cimino and others famous film makers. So the cover of "Les Cahiers" is an honor for OUATIA fan's

Terminator wasn't that bad...

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« Reply #7 on: March 21, 2003, 11:32:37 AM »

And you don't have to forget that in 2001, once upon a time in the west had still the 5th success in theatres since 1945.

I think that leone is more loved (now, of course) that he is in US.

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« Reply #8 on: March 21, 2003, 02:02:31 PM »

In France there's a war between the american cinema and the french one.

Every year, at the end of the year, the secretary of education shows official information about the american movies box office and the french ones.

In general, the french movies have a best box office than the american ones. And in France they're all very proud of this.

The franch "culture" wants to be different than the american one. In movies, in order to achieve this, the french cinema is an intellectual one, a more "cultural" one. So the french moviemakers prefere to have a good story than a film as a good visual an sound experience. And they've failed. They've failed.

Except for a couple of good movies, the french cinema is unable to bring us a good film. Let's not even talk about a masterpiece.

In art (the cinema is an art), you need passion. In France they're occupied whith reason. That's why there's not a single art genius in France.

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« Reply #9 on: March 26, 2003, 12:52:33 PM »

i'm agree with some points, i disagree with other points Smiley

First, yes, the majort part of the french are very proud of the "exeption culturelle française"... which doesn't really exist, of course. But remember that those guys also love "lethal weapon ": they're just kind of silly men. There is more silly people than intelligent people in france, like everywhere in the world.

Second (do you sau that???), in france, cinema hasn't as much money than in usa... so french movies can't be action movies, they can't be Apocalypse now, they can't be fistful of dynamite...

But...
But...
Did you see "un air de famille"? THIS is a masterpiece.
Did you see "le gout des autres"? THIS is a very good movie.
...

But...
But...
Do you know Pialat? He's one of the directors of the french "nouvelle vague", and that guy did only very very intellectuals movies. And he says that he did it because he hadn't money to do other movies!


Third (and last), a lot of american dircetors are produced in france. For exemple: David Lynch.

Ok.

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« Reply #10 on: March 27, 2003, 02:38:59 PM »

I understand what you're trying to say.

I saw "Un air de famille" and "Le gout des autres", very well known movies in france.

My opinion (and i's just an opinion) is that thess 2 movies are far away from beeing masterpieces. And I think (my opinion) that "Le gout des autres" is completely boring.

Money is not an essential if you want to make a good movie.

The first "Asterix" had cost a fortune, and it sucks. Same thing for "Le pacte des Loups". Sometimes, the french moviemakers have a lot of money for a movie, and what's the result? The first "Asterix"Huh?

In the other hand, what I really want to say, is that french moviemakers don't get involved with the esthetic vision of the movie, with the photography, with the sound, with the way that you tell a story, with the sensibility. And let me tell you that you don't need too much money to achieve this. The french cinema, in general (in general, I repeat) is more concerned about the story in a movie, about the script, but let's not forget that the first and most important objective of a movie is an esthetic objective. First of all, cinema is an art a visual and sound experience, if you have a good script, better. But the objet of a movie is not to tell a good story. If you want a good story, you can always read a book. Cinema is something else.

Leone understood this perfectly, and don't forget that for his first movies, he didn't have money at all.

The problem is that in general there isn't an artistic sensibility in France. Try to give me the name of one single french artist genius, one paintor (a real genius), one musician (a real genius like Rachmaninov, Bach or Tchaikovski and not Chopin), one writer (Zola, Flaubert and Hugo are great writers, but not genius like Dostoievski or Shakespeare).

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« Reply #11 on: March 27, 2003, 04:12:28 PM »

It's a shame that I haven't seen any of his films, but François Truffaut is a very famous director...  I don't know if he's a good one.

Also J.J. Annaud does good things from time to time.  He's not an art genius, but he does alright.  Enemy at the Gates was a very good one.

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« Reply #12 on: March 28, 2003, 01:51:49 PM »

Truffaut belongs exactly to the kind of "intelectual" french moviemakers that I talked about.

I was very, very disappointed by "Enemy at the gates", I was specting a great movie....

By the way, Annaud himself told the press that "Ennemy at the gates" is based on Leone's "900 days at Leningrad", his unachieved ("un-beginned" we could say) project. So, between what "900 days at Leningrad" could have been, and what "Enemy at the Gates" is, there's a long, very long way.

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« Reply #13 on: March 29, 2003, 09:20:48 AM »

Of course, I can't argue with that! Grin

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« Reply #14 on: March 29, 2003, 04:37:27 PM »

I think that there is (for me) just one genius who did movies all over the world: it is sergio (may be orson wells...)
I think there is just one genius who did music: it is ennio.

For "le pacte des loups", you're right, it's an awful movie (if you call that a movie), but i think the director was trying yo imitate bad american movies.
For asterix, you're right, it is also bad.

I have never said there IS genius in france, i think there WERE.
Truffaut is an other kind of cinema that leone or scorsese. He did great great movies, and also other movies who were boring.
He isn't the only guy in france who did so great movies.

You (and i too) have a sensibility who makes you feel pictures and sounds. That's great. I am also open to other ideas of cinema. What is fabulous with leone, this is that he had all: pictures sensibility, sounds sensibility, script sensibility, time sensibility, music sensibility...
That's why he was for me THE genius.

I'm not a cultured man, but i can say that Maupassant was a genius (he was a writer).

And for the music... i think that YOU can't like the french (recent) music. All those guys (goldman, souchon, cabrel, sanson...) can't do what YOU may call music. They are more in texts that in the music, you know.

In fact, there isn't realy a lot of genius. I love cinema, i love scorsese, coppola, sometimes de palma, sometimes spielberg....
But no one of them is a genius.


FOr the conclusion, i think that we are in fact agree, but you think that cinema is pictures and sounds (for you, a good script isn't necessary, but it is only a good point), music (i think, because you didn't say anything) is really music and harmony, not texts, and books are for the texts.
This is your opinion (or i didn't understood anything Smiley ).

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