In the final fifteen years of the life of legendary director Orson Welles he pins his Hollywood comeback hopes on a film, The Other Side of the Wind, in itself a film about an aging film director trying to finish his last great movie.
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Sophia Siddique Harvey,
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Orson Welles's final movie, The Other Side of the Wind, started filming in 1970 but by the time of his death in 1985 had not been released. It was finally released by Netflix in 2018. This documentary details the making of the movie and the problems Welles had in completing and releasing it.Written by
Several people interviewed in this documentary claimed that Orson Welles may never have intended to finish his film 'Other Side of the Wind'. However, several key reasons why the film was not completed - including the 1979 Iranian Revolution, a complete failure to raise any additional capital after his AMA award speech and a legal dispute over ownership of materials - could not have possibly been foreseen by Welles. Moreover, he would not put all the effort into bringing an expensive lawsuit if the ownership dispute conveniently served his original purpose of never finishing the film. If the lawsuit and the failed capital raise were all part of the plan for making an interesting film, no evidence is presented to support this assertion (nor do the filmmakers explicitly state this was the case). See more »
Le Nozze di Figaro (The Marriage of Figaro), K492: Overture
Written by nm0003665
Performed by Moscow State Radio and Television Symphony Orchestra, Klaus-Peter Hahn
Courtesy of Naxos of America See more »
Clearly another reviewer and I disagree in our assessment of this film. I did find "The Other Side of the Wind" worthwhile, but I have mixed feelings about this skewed portrayal of this masterful filmmaker. Having said that, some of the old film clips were well-chosen.
On a logistical level, this film is not what one would expect... most all of the friends and colleagues become talking heads who are not individually identified, until the rolling credits, where a slew of names are lined up. That said, Peter B is easily recognized, and a few others' identities are inferred by their comments. When Oja speaks, you are left to imagine what she looks like nowadays... I presume that she insisted that her sound bites would not include visuals.
What disappointed me the most were the cynical snipes made about the approach and demeanor of Welles, from several people closely associated with him. Some of their barbed comments served to discount the great complexity of this man. I wonder if these folks had enough nerve to frankly state their views in front of his face while he was alive? One celebrity commented on his demanding preference for a particular snack food. On the surface, the remark said more about her.
It strikes me as ironic that one clip shows Welles speaking on the essential value of editing, yet this film has chosen to slice things up into brief sound bites. As a result, the tone of the interviewees resemble a bitter pill, as if to say: while we might recognize the genius of this man, the viewer would do well to witness his significant deficiencies.
There are cherry-picked clips which try to convince the viewer about Welles impulse to control the details. Newsflash: many great artists fall prey to obsessiveness. We see Welles give a specific note to Norman Foster on his delivery. Foster transformed the line in-a-flash, and it was vastly improved. If this film intended to cast a shadow on the esteemed artful nuances which Welles strove for, then it failed.
Each viewer will have a different take on this film. As for me, the approach and tone of this film left me feeling defensive, and a bit sad.
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