The Criterion Channel presents a nine-minute short film entitled “Marvel Mon Amour”, directed by Daniel Raim, with the same great Stan “The Man” Lee, who talks about his improbable friendship with the famous French New Wave director Alain Resnais. In the film, Lee talks about the glory days of Marvel Comics writing and how he would occasionally receive visits to the Marvel office in New York from fans of celebrities such as Federico Fellini. Alain Resnais, the director of house art essentials such as Hiroshima Mon Amour and Last year in Marienbad was evidently a big fan of Marvel, a close friend of Lee, and would have even crashed into the guest house of Stan Lee when visiting America.
The story goes that Resnais, convinced that Lee could make a good film, convinced him to write a screenplay about pollution. Lee had never written a film before, but had taken a break, writing what was called The Monster Maker. Knowing this script will immediately put it at the top of the lists that tell about the Great unfinished film projects.
Lee doesn’t talk much about watching Resnais movies, but describes the famous director as “an exceptional boy”, and was amused that Resnais always wore a red shirt. Seriously, watch this interview. It is quite special.
Guillermo del Toro It should come as no surprise that Guillermo del Toro has a broad and eclectic taste in cinema. Thanks to the series of interviews of The Criterion Channel Adventures in Moviegoing, Del Toro – along with many others – offers short summaries of three to four minutes on some great classics that have influenced them … and not always the ones you might think.
Del Toro loves Jean Cocteau’s version of Beauty and the Beast from 1946, which could be expected. But del Toro is also a big fan of Jean Renoir’s 1931 love triangle drama, La Chienne, who explains that he used to project the film repeatedly for a movie club to which he belonged, slowly falling in love with it. It also takes a special moment to recommend a 1971 Mexican film called Canoa: A Shameful Memory, a largely unknown film outside of Mexico, but one of the most revolutionary films
for Mexico. Brad Bird The director of The Iron Giant, The Incredibles, Ratatouille and Mission: Impossible – Ghost Protocol reveals in his interviews Adventures in Moviegoing that he is attracted to certain deeply emotional – some might even say sentimental – cinematographic fables. For example, he loved City Lights, a 1931 Charlie Chaplin silent film, a comic cry of the highest level. Explain that silent film was instrumental in understanding the mandates of Pixar’s narrative, as the studio insisted that their stories should be followed even if you watched the film without sound. “It keeps you honest.”
Surprising for Brad Bird is his affection for the 1961 Akira Kurosawa film Yojimbo, a violent and cynical precursor of spaghetti westerns. Yojimbo is certainly fun to watch, but it’s a dark film about an unnamed sarcastic man, played by Toshiro Mifune, who manipulates the crazy street gangs to fight each other. “You become very aware of what the stars bring to a movie.”
Roger Corman Although film god B Roger Corman flooded the 1950s and 1960s with some of the silliest ever seen on film screens, he actually has quite a refined taste as a spectator. He was responsible, for example, for bringing the 1972 Ingmar Bergman Cries and Whispers masterpiece to America, a film that says “it had to do with love, emotion, sex, but also terror, hatred and pain in particular. ” The tone in Corman’s voice bets a constant deep respect for one of the greatest directors of cinema.
In fact, Corman never recommends extravagant films, tending to bask in the famous autobiography of Federico Fellini Amarcord, or in the dark war fantasy of Volker Schlöndorf The Tin Drum. Tin Drum, a bizarre film, was a brave adaptation of a notoriously unbridgeable novel about a three year old boy who decides to stop growing old when the Nazis came to power in Germany. Corman admires Schlöndorf’s cunning ability to simply do the job.
Paul Feig The affable director of comedies like Spy, Bridesmaids, Ghostbusters and the incredible A Simple Favor is, perhaps predictably, attracted to classic comedy films, but his selections on Adventures in Moviegoing tend to move to the dark side. For example, Feig is a huge fan of the greasy and unpleasant cult comedy from 1986, Withnail and I. “A story about fish out of water is fantastic. Especially if that fish is crazy. “
Feig is also passionate about Jacques Tati’s sober and ambitious comedy from 1967, Playtime. “I have really good memories … but this was what rang with me.” Note that “it took time satisfactorily”. His four-minute introduction is enough to become even the least curious to squat with a 124-minute almost silent comedy with no real storyline. Hm … 124-minute comedies with almost no plot? Recreation may have influenced Feig in ways he hadn’t realized.
Michael Cera Perhaps possessed by the most unexpected taste, the actor of This Is the End, Scott Pilgrim vs. the World and Youth in Revolt seems to love dark and inspiring psychosexual dramas. For example, would you expect Cera to be a fan of the tragic 1975 German queer film Fox and His Friends? “I find that movie really heartbreaking,” says Cera. “It’s funny how cruel the world is.” Rainer Werner Fassbinder, the director of Fox, was incredibly prolific and Cera notes the moment when he discovered Fassbinder as a constant and repeated catharsis. “How is it possible that someone has more than 10 great films? Keep coming and going. “
In addition to exalting his passion for Kurosawa (High and Low in his case) and Bergman (Scenes from a wedding), Cera is particularly fond of an obscure, almost horror dark Japanese sex film by Nagisa Oshima called Empire of Passion. He notes that he has seen it with friends and that “it is a really uncomfortable movie to watch with other people”. One could say about all the films in the Cera interview series. They are all extreme, violent, emotionally heartbreaking or sexually explicit. There are so many dark and intense films on The Criterion Channel, and Cera seems to have found half a dozen of the best.
All the segments of the interview listed above link directly to the films in question, so if the presentations interest you even at a minimum, you can start watching immediately. If you want to take a look at the minds of your nerdy heroes, watch them on The Criterion Channel, take some time and get ready to see at least a dozen hilarious movies. You may find that carefree, obscure and perhaps lesser-known art films from around the world are what many of your favorite artists were directly inspired by.