Nat Zingg

interests include: classic hollywood, silent film, historical avant-garde, latin american cinema, HK/chinese cinema

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  • The Executioner

    The Executioner

    ★★★

    Likely one of the outwardly-facing films from Franco's Spain, directed to international festivals etc., to show off a presumed 'liberal' national cultural sphere. Interesting how elements of Antonioni's art-film meditations on bourgeois melancholy (see: the Mediterranean locations, the sunglasses, the touristic wandering) are deformed here into something far more explicitly pointed, darkly satirical.

  • Redoubt

    Redoubt

    ★★★½

    Haven't kept up with Matthew Barney since seeing the CREMASTERS at Dobie Mall years-back but this seemed totally different; REDOUBT is something more like "traditional narrative cinema" in almost an American-silent-film-type vein, montage always cutting between two things in parallel, providing the familiar feeling of narrative tension: the engraver Barney vs. the hunter's posse; a character watching vs. whatever's-being-watched; character vs. his/her natural surroundings (often animals snooping around, or carcasses). Playing with genre as well, establishing shots show horse-spurs, mason-jars…

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  • Céline and Julie Go Boating

    Céline and Julie Go Boating

    ★★★★★

    Rivette anticipates VHS and DVD culture as the characters Celine and Julie replay the same narrative (a strangely stilted, period melodrama of a love-triangle and a child in trouble) over and over, entering the world of melodrama by sucking on a candy (the equivalent of pressing play with your remote control). Celine and Julie (re-)watch the same scenes in different sequencings; with actors being swapped one for another; with the conceit that a child can "pause" the action by looking…

  • The Kneeling Goddess

    The Kneeling Goddess

    ★★★½

    It is pretty cool how Gavaldón and crew manipulate the architecture of Antonio's (Arturo de Córdova) mansion to provide a kind of schematic framework for the film as a whole. The most prominent feature of the house is one long, expansive hall, stretching seemingly from one end of the house to the other. At each end there is a piece of art: a painting of Antonio's wife Elena above the fireplace, and a marble statue of his lover Raquel (María…