Monday, 6 January 2014

Yr2 Week 10 (Tues 17 Dec - Producing and Directing screening & 2 screen update)

Around 3 in the afternoon, we filmed our 2 projector piece, though alas, not without some difficulties ( we were supposed to film at 1:30, but Hana couldn't make it, so we had to hire the second camera from the loan store, which was both closed and had a large cue waiting. And then, the only ones left were7Ds, which took the larger memory cards that we did no have). Instead, we had to do a circuit around the university, racking first from in front, then behind, Andrew as he walked around. thankfully, everyone was patient, and we got it done fairly quick. I would edit the next day.

In today's screening, David now having returned, we watched acclaimed Italian director Bernardo Bertolucci's 1970 film The Conformist, based on a 1951 novel of the same name, bu is told in a different manner, non-linearly, as we follow an agent of the Fascist Italian government, Marcello, both during and before WW2, as he is sent to murder a critic of the government over in France, but during this, we get glimpses of his past and how he became so cold and distant.

Throughout the film,we cut back to Marcello in a car, driving to what is eventually revealed to be the murder of the target and his wife out in the woods. Some have argued, and I myself see this to an extent too, that the car is a physical representation of the journey into Marcello's psyche, with the drive being a sort of analyst, listening in, and the seat of the car acting the 'psychiatry couch'. Furthermore, through the flashbacks, we see Marcello's past trauma, such as a homosexual encounter in his youth and what he thought was murder when he shot the other man, another driver (however, later, he survives, and pins the murders of the couple on him, a sort of revenge on the man he believes ruined his life), and as a by-product, his search for 'normality' and 'acceptance' by society, shifting sides when needed just to fit in, as evidenced in he end when he turns on the fascism after they are ousted from power.

Also to note are Vitotio Santorio's wonderful cinematography, making use of bold colours, especially during a scene where Marcello and the wife talk, and there are these strong, bold blues coming from the window, or the wonderful wide angle shots of the fascist building, emphasizing the space/ego of the party, as well as why the film is non-linear. Originally, Conformist was linear, but then the producer, a relative of Bertolucci's, brought in Franco Arcalli, an acclaimed Italian editor who was renowned for being able to drastically change film during the editing phase yet still have them flow and work well. Rather than fighting, the two men got on really well, and it was Arcalli who came up with the non-linearity and turning certain scenes into flashbacks.

Frankly, I don't know what more to say. Great film (photographed by one of my favourite cinematographers), great bit of film history, and a strong reminder of how a film can easily change at any point during production, and just how significant work in 'Post' truly is.

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