Taxi zum Klo (1980) - News Poster

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Love review – one for hardcore fans only

Gaspar Noé’s bid to shock us into submission with 3D sex is let down by two-dimensional performances

“I want to film that which cinema has rarely allowed itself, either for commercial or legal reasons,” says Gaspar Noé, writer/director of cause celebre Cannes favourites Seul Contre Tous, Irréversible and Enter the Void. For his fourth feature, Noé sets out “to film the organic dimension of being in love”, free from “the ridiculous division that dictates no normal film can contain overly erotic scenes”. Thus we have a Last Tango in Paris-tinged tale of amour fou in which a disconsolate young American in Paris drifts from the responsibilities of fatherhood back into memories of lost love, Noé taking us on a lurid three-way tour of appendages and orifices, physical and psychological.

This of course is nothing new. Since the post-Deep Throat days of Nagisa Oshima’s Ai No Corrida
See full article at The Guardian - Film News »

Stranger danger: gay characters and the country don't mix

When Lgbt people leave the safety of the city in films, it usually spells bad news – and Stranger by the Lake and Tom at the Farm don't buck the trend

Gay people and the city have been a good match since Sodom and Gomorrah. From the molly houses of 18th-century London to 1970s San Francisco via prewar Berlin, the urban environment has always been the natural habitat of queer culture – a place where Lgbt people can set their own rules, form their own families, be anonymous when they want to and find company when they fancy it. The countryside, on the other hand, is the place they escape from – a realm of social conformity with limited opportunities for culture, sex or socialising, and perhaps even a site of danger.

That's the stereotype, anyway, both in reality and on screen. Innumerable movies with claims to gay-classic status are inseparable from their urban settings: London has Victim,
See full article at The Guardian - Film News »

Movies This Week: November 22-26, 2013

This is an abbreviated, pre-Thanksgiving edition of Movies This Week. While everything pretty much got out of the way of The Hunger Games: Catching Fire this weekend, some new movies will open mid-week to take advantage of the holiday. As such, we're just going to cover what is playing over the next few days and then return on Wednesday with a new post so you can plan your moviegoing accordingly. 

The Austin Film Society only has one event lined up before the holidays and that is tonight's special presentation of The Unspeakable Act. It's happening at the Afs Screening Room and online ticketing closes at 3pm, so you'll want to plan ahead to attend.

The Alamo Ritz has a couple more screenings of To Kill A Mockingbird for their "Tough Ladies" series happening this Saturday and Sunday. On Monday night, you can catch a very rare screening of Taxi Zum Klo
See full article at Slackerwood »

New-wave queer film: embracing the real

A fresh crop of directors are rejecting stereotypical roles and predictable plots, creating films that deal with real life and rounded characters

Ira Sach's new film, Keep the Lights On, follows the decade-long relationship between two men who meet on a New York phone-sex line in 1998. It includes explicit sex and copious drug use; it also includes domestic squabbles, quotidian work hassles and meals with friends, straight and gay. No one comes out or dies, and everything is shown with the same fluid, elegant transparency. "I feel very few films convey the communal nature of urban life these days, the lack of boundaries," Sachs says. "'Those are the gays over there' – that's not how we live any more."

Keep the Lights On is at once very good and conspicuously ordinary. Like several other recent features about gay characters by gay directors, it deploys naturalism – often shooting handheld in found locations
See full article at The Guardian - Film News »

Mark Kermode's DVD round-up

Dreams of a Life; Moneyball; Snowtown; Weekend; The Adventures of Tintin: The Secret of the Unicorn; Resistance; Wreckers

While many mawkish middle-of-the-road melodramas are lazily referred to as "heartbreaking", few films are as genuinely deserving of that epithet as Carol Morley's Dreams of a Life (2011, Dogwoof, E). An insightful account of the life and death of Joyce Vincent, a vibrant young woman who lay undiscovered in her flat for years after slipping through the cracks in an increasingly alienated, isolated society, this sobering cocktail of drama and documentary is at once engaging and enraging, enthralling and appalling.

Interweaving soul-searching contributions from Vincent's friends and lovers with hauntingly dreamy reconstruction footage, Morley paints a fable-like picture of a fractured personality, seen in tantalising glimpses through the memories of those who (never really?) knew her. Audiotape recordings of Vincent's voice (she was a promising singer) prompt uncanny reactions from the interviewees,
See full article at The Guardian - Film News »

Festivals round-up: Ken Russell Forever, Rendez-Vous With French Cinema, BFI London Lgff, Annecy 2012

In a tribute to British filmmaker Ken Russell, who died in November 2011 at the age of 84, a selection of his work is being presented at several London cinemas this month.

Among his credits are 1971's X-rated The Devils starring Oliver Reed and Vanessa Redgrave; 1975's Tommy, a star-studded smash-hit film version of The Who's rock opera; the 1980 sci-fi film Altered States, adapted from Paddy Chayefsky's novel and providing the feature film debuts of William Hurt and Drew Barrymore; and the 1988 cult classic horror flick The Lair of The White Worm, based on Bram Stoker's novel and starring Hugh Grant.

The programme of the London season of screenings ranges from his earliest television documentaries through to his most acclaimed feature films, plus discussions and special events.

Ken Russell Forever, which began on March 10 and finishes on March 20, has already screened films including Gothic, Crimes of Passion, Whore, Tommy, Altered States,
See full article at The Geek Files »

Hidden gems of 2011: the DVDs you may have missed | review

Mark Kermode's pick of the DVDs that were overlooked this year

Benda Bilili!

A strong contender for best film of the year, this electrifying account of Congolese street musicians overcoming incredible odds to bring their invigorating music to the world is a real reason to be cheerful. The soundtrack is infectious, the film-making unobtrusive, and the central characters endlessly inspiring. Bravo!

Patagonia

Diverse and unpredictable in his output, Marc Evans (Resurrection Man, My Litte Eye, Snow Cake) remains one of the UK's most consistently interesting and inventive filmmakers. Somewhat overlooked in cinemas, this lyrical cross-cultural escapade teases out longstanding connections between Wales and Argentina, with Evans drawing together the past and present with ease.

We Were Here

The outbreak of Aids, which ravaged San Francisco in the early 80s, is recounted by those who lived through it, offering a celebration of the indomitable human spirit that enabled diverse communities
See full article at The Guardian - Film News »

Fast and Furious 5 blazes a trail

Latest instalment in cars-and-crime franchise takes pole position over Easter weekend, leaving Russell Brand's Arthur eating its dust

The winner

Over the past couple of weeks, distributors and cinema owners have been quick to blame the sunshine for the depressed box office. But this column has always maintained that if there's a film audiences really want to see, they will forego the pleasures of a sunny afternoon or a warm summer evening for a couple of hours.

The latest film to storm the box office despite an unseasonally warm Easter is Fast & Furious 5. The latest entry in the popular cars-and-crime franchise took a stonking £5.33m including £1.32m in Thursday previews. Add in Easter Monday takings, and that figure rises to £6.37m over five days.

The figures are in line with the opening of fourth picture, Fast & Furious, over the Easter 2009 weekend. That took £4.93m over the Friday-Sunday period, and £6.01m including Easter Monday.
See full article at The Guardian - Film News »

Taxi zum Klo – review

Thirty years ago, when Taxi zum Klo was shown in several cinemas under club conditions without a BBFC certificate, I was lined up to give evidence for the defence were it to be prosecuted for obscenity. My services were not required and the film now stands as a milestone in the history of both free speech and the representation of gays in the cinema.

What helps it retain its vitality is that writer-director Frank Ripploh (who died of cancer in 2002 at the age of 52) treats his life as "a normal, tired, neurotic polymorphous-perverse teacher" in Berlin with the same witty, generous, self-denigratory honesty as Clive James and Simon Gray brought to their heterosexual exercises in confessional autobiographies.

Taxi zum Klo is a truthful film, revolutionary in its time, about love, the pleasures of promiscuity and the fears of the fading of desire. Shot just before the great Aids scare of the early 1980s,
See full article at The Guardian - Film News »

"St Nick," Wc Fields, Cine las Americas, More

  • MUBI
"The indie Texan filmmaker David Lowery receives a double bill at the reRun Gastropub Theater in Dumbo, Brooklyn, and while Pioneer, a 16-minute short, and St Nick, an 86-minute feature, don't provide hard answers to their mysteries, both are deeply intriguing," writes Andy Webster in the New York Times. Regarding St Nick, a "potentially stifling ambience is deflected by quiet suspense and the awe-inspiring compositions of the cinematographer, Clay Liford. Decaying rustic interiors evoke Andrew Wyeth still lifes; pastoral long shots suggest a Southwestern walkabout. And Mr Lowery seems ready for a bigger canvas."

"Obliquely charting the terror, loneliness, and liberation of navigating a cold, callous grown-up world, St Nick follows nameless brother and sister runaways (played by real-life siblings Tucker and Savanna Sears) who take up impermanent residence in an empty Texas house," writes Nick Schager in Slant. "David Lowery's debut feature is long on silence and laden
See full article at MUBI »

This week's new films

Arthur (12A)

(Jason Winer, 2011, Us) Russell Brand, Helen Mirren, Greta Gerwig, Jennifer Garner, Luis Guzmán. 110 mins

You can see what they were thinking: "it worked for one difficult-to-market English comic, so let's try it again". But somewhere between the moon and New York City this romcom seems to have lost some of its spirit and spontaneity. There are some snappy lines and funny moments, but Brand's overprivileged wastrel is nowhere near as cuddly as Dudley Moore's was – or as convincingly drunk. Sometimes, hair of the dog isn't the answer.

How I Ended This Summer (12A)

(Aleksei Popogrebsky, 2010, Rus) Grigory Dobrygin, Sergei Puskepalis. 130 mins

Spare and distinctive two-hander set in remote Arctic Russia, where the endless daylight, monotonous work, some terrible news and a touch of radiation exacerbate generational differences to deadly levels.

Pina (U)

(Wim Wenders, 2011, Ger/Fra/UK) 104 mins

A 3D tribute to the work, rather than the life,
See full article at The Guardian - Film News »

Taxi zum Klo – review

Reissued scabrous, satirical, confrontational German gay sex comedy. By Peter Bradshaw

Frank Ripploh's chaotic, low-budget, hardcore gay sex movie from 1980 still looks heavy-duty more than 30 years on. At the time, supportive liberal straights earnestly praised it for being humane and life-affirming. Perhaps now is the time to emphasise its less high-minded qualities: it is scabrous, satirical, confrontational. The movie is set in West Germany at the end of the pre-Aids era, although the idea of promiscuity and sickness is candidly addressed. Director-star Ripploh plays a version of himself: an earnest and dull schoolteacher by day – by night a dedicated cottager, and frequenter of public lavatories and bath houses. Three decades ago, this was seen as a challenging "issue" movie. Now it looks more like a daring, acid black comedy filmed on the hoof. Taxi Zum Klo was a one-man, one-film gay new wave.

Rating: 4/5

ComedyWorld cinemaPeter Bradshaw

guardian.co.
See full article at The Guardian - Film News »

Taxi zum Klo's Berlin is a sexual playground

Bowie, Christiane F and Taxi zum Klo: these are the things that made Berlin so alluring to the British pop culture of the late 70s and early 80s. Jon Savage remembers a bewitching era

Frank Ripploh is fed up. Stuck in hospital for six weeks with some unnamed contagious sexual disease – most probably hepatitis – he receives a visit from his live-in lover. Instead of listening sympathetically to Frank's moans about the other patients, Bernd gives him a right telling-off about his promiscuity: "I hope lying here teaches you something." After Bernd leaves, a furious Frank pulls his clothes on and hails a taxi. There then follows a mad dash around various public toilets. With the meter running, he desperately searches for a quick pick-up and eventually ends up in Berlin's Tiergarten – a large public park near the centre of the city that was a notorious cruising ground at that time.
See full article at The Guardian - Film News »

Close up: Bad Wills hunting

Love is in the air, but there's a definite whiff of opportunism in there too

The big story

A nation holds its breath. Unshakeable from the collective imagination is the image of a tall, blond, regal-looking young man and his shapely dark-haired companion. In feverish newsrooms they check the wires for stories of surges in sales of booze, bunting and widescreen TVs among a recession-hit populace thirsty for a shot of euphoria. Yes, Lifetime TV's William & Kate: the movie, is coming to your screens this Sunday.

Not everyone was swept away in the excitement of the royal romance-themed Us movie. Indeed Lifetime's William, whose name sounds like one Beano writers might have concocted for a used car salesman, Nico Evers-Swindell, felt compelled to defend the film. Why? Well, the Daily Mail had shown it some tough love, calling it "truly terrible: a shoddily cast, poorly executed, badly edited and surprisingly
See full article at The Guardian - Film News »

This week's new films

Meek's Cutoff (PG)

(Kelly Reichardt, 2010, Us) Michelle Williams, Bruce Greenwood, Shirley Henderson, Paul Dano, Will Patton. 102 mins

Take away the epic music, the widescreen vistas, the male chauvinism, the gunfights, and just about every other Hollywood western convention, and you get this sparse, haunting evocation of American pioneering – which is probably far closer to how the west was really won. This group of settlers breaks away from the Oregon trail only to wander through an uncharted desert limbo in a trance of thirst, tension and uncertainty. Putting women's roles and the hardships of frontier survival very much to the fore, the result is a western unlike any other.

Your Highness (15)

(David Gordon Green, 2011, Us) Danny McBride, James Franco, Natalie Portman. 102 mins

A medieval stoner-com, dude! Which sounds like a great idea if you're baked, but not if you remember how Year One, that caveman stoner-com, turned out.

Scream 4 (15)

(Wes Craven,
See full article at The Guardian - Film News »

DVD Releases: 'Taxi Zum Klo'

  • CineVue
During one scene from Frank Ripploh's semi-autobiographical tale of a sex-obsessed, German school teacher Taxi Zum Klo (1980) we witness a man lying on a bed being sprayed in the face with urine. For ten, maybe fifteen seconds, all we are shown is the increasingly soaked and excited gent and a stream of the aforementioned urine being directed by an unknown party. 

Although a large percentage of the film-going public would claim to be appalled by the allusion of one man relieving himself on another, I thought it was a brave and interesting scene. Certainly my first experience of seeing a 'golden shower' on the big screen and being a liberal fellow in an art house cinema I had no problem with the suggestion. Hell, it was only a stream of water or something; it's not as if Ripploh had furnished us with a wide shot of him with his
See full article at CineVue »

Documentaries to "Exit" 2010 With and More New DVDs

  • IFC
A look at what's new on DVD today:

"Gasland" (2010)

Directed by Josh Fox

Released by New Video Group

"Joan Rivers: A Piece of Work"

Directed by Ricki Stern and Annie Sundberg

Released by Mpi Home Video

"Exit Through the Gift Shop" (2010)

Directed by Banksy

Released by Oscilloscope Laboratories

If you haven't caught up on the year's best documentaries in time to fill out your top 10 list, three of them will be hitting DVD shelves this week, beginning with Josh Fox's Sundance award-winning "Gasland," an exploration of the "hydraulic fracturing" going on in own backyard, a type of drilling that has spread to 34 states in the U.S. and has left a host of reservoirs of toxic waste and frequent gas explosions along the way. For something less serious, but equally compelling, there is also Ricki Stern and Annie Sundberg's "Joan Rivers: A Piece of Work," which follows the
See full article at IFC »

Putting the F-word in BBFC

A 15 certificate for Made in Dagenham tells Stephen Woolley that, despite the growing violence of recent 12A films, bad language is still the final frontier at the BBFC

Over three decades of bewildering confusion, my personal relationship with the British Board of Film Classification – as exhibitor, distributor, producer and punter – has been turbulent, fraught and surreal. There seems to be no sign of that changing, even though the BBFC has finally decided to let the public speak; it has held various "consultations" and "in-depth discussions", and has concluded that the great British public want continuous, unmitigated violence, but won't stand for a bit of swearing.

For example, the violent Inception and The Dark Knight were granted 12A certificates, and Scott Pilgrim Vs the World is granted a 12A, despite the unending riot of comic-strip hacking, chopping and walloping of body parts. A 12A means anyone can attend, but kids under
See full article at The Guardian - Film News »

Torino Gay Film Festival 2010: Robert Pattinson, Brazilian Shorts, Taxi Zum Klo, Mary Lou

Robert Pattinson as Salvador Dali, Javier Beltrán as Federico Garcia Lorca in Paul Morrison’s Little Ashes (top); Eytan Fox’s Mary Lou (middle); Frank Ripploh’s raunchy gay classic Taxi Zum Klo (bottom) Torino Lgbt Film Festival 2010: Leo’S Room, Boy In A Bathtub, Rosa von Praunheim Other Torino screenings on Wednesday, April 21, include Paul Morrison’s Little Ashes, starring Twilight idol Robert Pattinson as Salvador Dali (!) and Javier Beltrán as Federico Garcia Lorca. Set in 1920s Spain, Dali is portrayed as a closet case in love with Lorca, who ended up killed by Franco sympathizers during the Spanish Civil War. Future filmmaker Luis Buñuel (Matthew McNulty) is depicted as an anti-gay grouch. Producer Carlo Dusi will be present at [...]
See full article at Alt Film Guide »

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