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3 items from 2016


Criterion Reflections – The Producers (1968) – Ld #35

10 April 2016 12:30 PM, PDT | CriterionCast | See recent CriterionCast news »

David’s Quick Take for the tl;dr Media Consumer:

A brash, vulgar, wildly energetic and shamelessly provocative comedy romp that launched Mel Brooks as a film director, Gene Wilder as a popular comic actor, and grossly expanded the latitude extended to comedians in cinema, establishing radically poor taste as an acceptable marketing strategy in mainstream entertainment. Though The Producers is fondly remembered, massively influential and boasts some truly unforgettable sequences of inspired lunacy, too much time is dedicated to histrionic leering, shouting and shrieking episodes that don’t deliver enough in terms of wit to earn my enthusiastic endorsement overall. The story line is pretty familiar – a rambunctious Broadway showman conspires with a neurotic accountant to bilk investors in an offensive production, only to see their plan foiled when the play becomes an unexpected hit. The premise is clever and offers a broad platform for unbridled zaniness. A lot »

- David Blakeslee

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Episode 171 – Vilgot Sjöman’s I Am Curious…

30 March 2016 5:00 AM, PDT | CriterionCast | See recent CriterionCast news »

This time on the podcast, Scott is joined by David Blakeslee and James McCormick to discuss Vilgot Sjöman’s I Am Curious (Yellow) and I Am Curious (Blue).

About the film:

Seized by customs upon entry to the United States, subject of a heated court battle, banned in cities across the United States, Vilgot Sjöman’s I Am Curious—Yellow is one of the most controversial films of all time. This landmark document of Swedish society during the sexual revolution has been declared both obscene and revolutionary. It tells the story of Lena (Lena Nyman), a searching and rebellious young woman, and her personal quest to understand the social and political conditions in 1960s Sweden, as well as her bold exploration of her own sexual identity. Shattering taboos as it freely traverses the lines between fact and fiction, I Am Curious—Yellow is presented here for the first time with »

- Scott Nye

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Criterion Reflections – I Am Curious (Blue) (1968) – #181

28 March 2016 8:30 AM, PDT | CriterionCast | See recent CriterionCast news »

David’s Quick Take for the tl;dr Media Consumer:

Both of Vilgot Sjöman’s I Am Curious films are far too often unjustly overlooked and appear to have been saddled with harsher reputations than either of them deserve. (Yellow) probably suffered a serious backlash due to its extraordinary popularity after it was censored and brought before the United States Supreme Court as obscene and therefore prohibited material, even though it doesn’t begin to approach anything we’d consider pornographic by contemporary standards. (Blue) was likewise dismissed and overlooked by the same crowds who were underwhelmed by (Yellow), expecting to see something that Sjöman never intended. Together, the two films are really just a combined, extended 3 1/2 hour anthology of Swedish culture and politics of the late 1960s as seen through the eyes of the director Sjöman and his young protege/lover/antagonist Lena Nyman, roughly half his age and »

- David Blakeslee

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3 items from 2016


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