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First Annual Art-House Challenge Discussion Thread

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First Annual Art-House Challenge Discussion Thread

Old 09-05-21, 12:31 AM
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Re: Discussion Thread: Revamping September Challenge!

Originally Posted by LJG765 View Post
I should have saved Satellite Girl and Milk Cow! Had no idea it'd qualify for this challenge too. It's a very bizarre film, if I do say so myself. If you have the disc, I hope you watch the short film (it's about 25/30 mins if I remember correctly), A Coffee Vending Machine and its Sword. I thought it was better than the actual film.
Yes, I did. It was great. I also liked the short that was on My Life As A Zucchini. The Genie in a Tin of Ravioli.
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Old 09-05-21, 07:42 PM
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Re: Discussion Thread: Revamping September Challenge!

Originally Posted by rbrown498 View Post
Man, Travis, that's a downer. Have you tried a firmware update for your player?
I spent almost a full hour chatting with tech support. I was amazed, given the player's age, that they didn't just say, "Dude, that thing's old. We don't even remember making it." It was ultimately determined that I would need to arrange a technician to come diagnose the problem, at which point I decided I'd rather fork over ~$40-50 for a new player to make do and consider getting something with more bells and whistles at a later date. I was able to finally start the box tonight with Smiles of a Summer Night. It was my first Bergman film, way back in 2010 for that year's Criterion challenge, and I wholeheartedly agree it's a terrific way to open the box. For those not aware, rather than go with a chronological sequencing of films, Criterion arranged the box set as though it was a film festival, even titling certain discs, "Opening Night", "Centerpiece"s 1, 2, and 3, and "Closing Night". I actually kinda dig this approach. It works quite well for Bergman, anyway. If you've avoided Bergman, or just haven't gotten around to Smiles, I highly recommend it. It's a nice, breezy sex comedy with characters who bask in their shamelessness. It's delightful.
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Old 09-05-21, 07:44 PM
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Re: Discussion Thread: Revamping September Challenge!

Originally Posted by davidh777 View Post
Is this the official discussion thread? Sorry if I missed an announcement.
Yes it is and no, you didn't miss anything. I meant to create a separate thread for discussion but then, uh, I didn't. Ergo, this planning thread has become the de facto discussion thread. I'll ask a moderator to revise it to be clearer.
Old 09-05-21, 10:38 PM
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Re: Discussion Thread: Revamping September Challenge!

Originally Posted by rbrown498 View Post
In case you haven't heard the news, the first annual National Silent Movie Day will be held on September 29th. You can read all about it at the official website:

https://www.nationalsilentmovieday.org/

TCM will celebrate by screening 24 hours of silent films and documentaries about silent films that day. Here's the lineup (all times are Eastern):

Wednesday, September 29

6:15 AM Flesh and the Devil (1926)
8:15 AM The Wind (1928)
9:45 AM Battleship Potemkin (1925)
11:00 AM City Lights (1931)
12:30 PM Within Our Gates (1920)
2:00 PM The Passion of Joan of Arc (1927)
4:00 PM The Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse (1921)
6:30 PM The Freshman (1925)
8:00 PM The Melies Mystery (2021) (Documentary about restoring some of Melies's films)
9:15 PM A Trip to the Moon (1902)
9:30 PM Be Natural: The Untold Story of Alice Guy-Blache (2018) (Documentary)
11:15 PM The Great Buster: A Celebration (2018) (Documentary about Buster Keaton)

Thursday, September 30

1:00 AM Sherlock, Jr. (1924)
2:00 AM Sparrows (1926)
4:00 AM Piccadilly (1929)
Several years ago, I got to attend a screening of Battleship Potemkin with the Louisville Orchestra performing a live score. It was amazing. Obviously, it'll be awhile thanks to COVID before such things resume with any regularity but if you get the chance to attend a similar function I highly recommend treating yourself if you can. I have the Kino Blu-ray of Potemkin and if I finish the Bergman box in time, I'd like to squeeze it in but I know--brilliant is the film is--it'll never live up to that experience. In case it seems relevant, yes, I had seen it before that performance. The only thing better insofar as that kind of thing goes was when I got to see Nosferatu with the conductor of the Louisville Orchestra, Teddy Abrams, performing live accompaniment on the organ at the 100+ year old church where the screening was held. It was wild to see that film in that setting, I can tell you. I love stuff like that!
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Old 09-06-21, 09:43 AM
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Re: Discussion Thread: Revamping September Challenge!

Anybody got YouTube recommendations?
Old 09-06-21, 12:17 PM
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Re: Discussion Thread: Revamping September Challenge!

Originally Posted by KaBluie View Post
Anybody got YouTube recommendations?
I have some Tubi recommendations (also free, but unlike YouTube, entirely legit). Quite a few of them are horror films, in case you're one of our participants regarding this as a sort of pre-Horror Challenge Challenge, though I'd recommend them anyway:
Spoiler:
SILENT
The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari
Nosferatu
The Phantom of the Opera (1925)
Steamboat Bill, Jr.

TALKIES
The Blood of Jesus
The Bronze Buckaroo
Daughters of Darkness (1971)
Dead End (1937)
Images
In a Lonely Place
Jamaica Inn
Jungle Book (1942)
My Man Godfrey
Man With the Gun
The Old Dark House
The Outlaw (1943)
Sabotage
Sympathy for Lady Vengeance
Theatre of Blood
The Thief of Bagdad (1940)
Things to Come
The 10th Victim

They also have an entire selection of films from Film Movement. I can't attest to any of them, but my watchlist includes:

Midaq Alley
Nurse.Fighter.Boy.
Scarlet Diva
Theeb


Old 09-06-21, 02:26 PM
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Re: Discussion Thread: Revamping September Challenge!

I think I’m going to watch Breathless for the first time tonight. Lead actor (?) in it just passed away.
Old 09-06-21, 04:08 PM
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Re: Discussion Thread: Revamping September Challenge!

Originally Posted by Trevor View Post
I think Iím going to watch Breathless for the first time tonight. Lead actor (?) in it just passed away.
Yeah, Jean-Paul Belmondo. I've really dug him in everything I've seen him in so far. One of those effortlessly cool cats. It feels like anything can happen at any time whenever he's onscreen. Throwing out his cameo in the debacle that was the 1967 Casino Royale, Breathless was my introduction to him. He reportedly based his performance in that film on Humphrey Bogart. I wasn't looking for that when I watched it. I do recall he wore a trench coat, but didn't think much of it.
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Old 09-07-21, 04:19 AM
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Re: Discussion Thread: Revamping September Challenge!

Originally Posted by KaBluie View Post
Anybody got YouTube recommendations?
Dawn of the Dead

Old 09-07-21, 04:22 AM
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Re: Discussion Thread: Revamping September Challenge!

Originally Posted by KaBluie View Post
Anybody got YouTube recommendations?
Marat/ Sade
Old 09-09-21, 10:35 PM
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Re: First Annual Art-House Challenge Discussion Thread

Isn't this the second Thursday?
Old 09-10-21, 04:00 PM
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Re: First Annual Art-House Challenge Discussion Thread

Originally Posted by KaBluie View Post
Isn't this the second Thursday?
Yes, it is. Or was, anyway. I apologize for my tardiness as host. Our first prize winner as decided by the Google random number generator is #15: bacigalup. Congratulations! I have messaged you with your selection choices.
Old 09-11-21, 07:06 AM
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Re: First Annual Art-House Challenge Discussion Thread

Originally Posted by Travis McClain View Post
Yes, it is. Or was, anyway. I apologize for my tardiness as host. Our first prize winner as decided by the Google random number generator is #15: bacigalup. Congratulations! I have messaged you with your selection choices.
Travis,

Thanks very much! I PM'ed my selections to you last night.

...and also a hearty hand clasp to Golden Wheels of Hamilton Book for sponsoring the Challange!!
Old 09-11-21, 10:41 AM
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Re: Discussion Thread: Revamping September Challenge!

Originally Posted by Travis McClain View Post
I spent almost a full hour chatting with tech support. I was amazed, given the player's age, that they didn't just say, "Dude, that thing's old. We don't even remember making it." It was ultimately determined that I would need to arrange a technician to come diagnose the problem, at which point I decided I'd rather fork over ~$40-50 for a new player to make do and consider getting something with more bells and whistles at a later date. I was able to finally start the box tonight with Smiles of a Summer Night. It was my first Bergman film, way back in 2010 for that year's Criterion challenge, and I wholeheartedly agree it's a terrific way to open the box. For those not aware, rather than go with a chronological sequencing of films, Criterion arranged the box set as though it was a film festival, even titling certain discs, "Opening Night", "Centerpiece"s 1, 2, and 3, and "Closing Night". I actually kinda dig this approach. It works quite well for Bergman, anyway. If you've avoided Bergman, or just haven't gotten around to Smiles, I highly recommend it. It's a nice, breezy sex comedy with characters who bask in their shamelessness. It's delightful.
Iím a fan of the Sondheim musical A Little Night Music so Iíve been meaning to watch SOASN for years!
Old 09-11-21, 06:22 PM
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Re: First Annual Art-House Challenge Discussion Thread

Would the film of Come From Away on Apple+ count for this challenge? It's an extraordinarily moving musical about the people of Gander NFL taking in airline passengers who were stranded during the days after 9/11 when no air traffic was allowed in North America.

Last edited by Gobear; 09-12-21 at 01:09 AM.
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Old 09-11-21, 10:12 PM
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Re: First Annual Art-House Challenge Discussion Thread

Originally Posted by Gobear View Post
Would the film of Come From Away on Apple+ count for this challenge? It's an extraordinarily moving musical about the people of Gander NFL taking in airline passengers who were stranded during the days after 0/11 when no air traffic was allowed in
North America.
It's just my opinion, but that sounds like one of the most art-house-y films ever. The way I look at it, if it's not the sort of film that'll play at your local multiplex, then it's pretty much art house. So, yeah, I vote for "go for it."
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Old 09-15-21, 09:24 AM
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Re: First Annual Art-House Challenge Discussion Thread

So far I've been using the challenge to watch all those Arrow, Criterion, and KL titles I've picked up in the past year. Most counts for other challenges but this lets me pretty much watch what I want without that concern. Many of these are old favorites that have received BR upgrades or are arriving for the first time on physical media.

One of those purchases I've never seen before but read good things about is The Life Aquatic with Steve Zissou (2004). I'm not quite sure what to make of this one. It's absolutely the most "art house" type film I've watched so far. It's rather odd and I'm just not feeling the love others seem to have as it often feels and plays like a SNL sketch that didn't quite work but got expanded to 2 hours anyway.
Old 09-15-21, 12:32 PM
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Re: First Annual Art-House Challenge Discussion Thread

Originally Posted by BobO'Link View Post
So far I've been using the challenge to watch all those Arrow, Criterion, and KL titles I've picked up in the past year. Most counts for other challenges but this lets me pretty much watch what I want without that concern. Many of these are old favorites that have received BR upgrades or are arriving for the first time on physical media.

One of those purchases I've never seen before but read good things about is The Life Aquatic with Steve Zissou (2004). I'm not quite sure what to make of this one. It's absolutely the most "art house" type film I've watched so far. It's rather odd and I'm just not feeling the love others seem to have as it often feels and plays like a SNL sketch that didn't quite work but got expanded to 2 hours anyway.
I agree; it doesn't really gel as comedy, but I do enjoy Seu Jorge singing Bowie songs in Portuguese.
Old 09-15-21, 01:20 PM
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Re: First Annual Art-House Challenge Discussion Thread

Originally Posted by Gobear View Post
I agree; it doesn't really gel as comedy, but I do enjoy Seu Jorge singing Bowie songs in Portuguese.
Yes, that's absolutely the high point of the film. It took me by surprise - pleasantly so - when the first one came on. He did a great job doing them on acoustic guitar and I found myself singing along on several of them. It didn't hurt that most are from the albums I consider to be Bowie's best work (Ziggy Stardust..., Hunky Dory, and David Bowie [aka Space Oddity]).
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Old 09-15-21, 03:26 PM
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Re: First Annual Art-House Challenge Discussion Thread

Originally Posted by Gobear View Post
Would the film of Come From Away on Apple+ count for this challenge? It's an extraordinarily moving musical about the people of Gander NFL taking in airline passengers who were stranded during the days after 9/11 when no air traffic was allowed in North America.
Originally Posted by rbrown498 View Post
It's just my opinion, but that sounds like one of the most art-house-y films ever. The way I look at it, if it's not the sort of film that'll play at your local multiplex, then it's pretty much art house. So, yeah, I vote for "go for it."
I would concur with rbrown498 's assessment

Since this is the first time we've tried a broad Art House challenge and that can be so nebulous, I think it can be helpful going forward if some of us do chance some borderline stuff and end up feeling it wasn't sufficiently Art House-y. If you can elaborate why you feel that way, it could help us create a clearer focus going forward. So maybe this year, give yourselves half-credit for those chances you take that don't work?

(Also: your total counts are only relevant to yourselves anyway so it doesn't make any difference how you score anything. Prizes are drawn entirely randomly from which number post yours is in the list thread.)
Old 09-15-21, 03:57 PM
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Re: First Annual Art-House Challenge Discussion Thread

Originally Posted by BobO'Link View Post
So far I've been using the challenge to watch all those Arrow, Criterion, and KL titles I've picked up in the past year. Most counts for other challenges but this lets me pretty much watch what I want without that concern. Many of these are old favorites that have received BR upgrades or are arriving for the first time on physical media.

One of those purchases I've never seen before but read good things about is The Life Aquatic with Steve Zissou (2004). I'm not quite sure what to make of this one. It's absolutely the most "art house" type film I've watched so far. It's rather odd and I'm just not feeling the love others seem to have as it often feels and plays like a SNL sketch that didn't quite work but got expanded to 2 hours anyway.
That one seems to be one of the more polarizing Anderson films. I'm in the "liked it" camp because for me, it feels the least art house film from Anderson that I've seen. If you're looking for support for disliking it, though, look no further than the supplements on the Criterion release. Anderson's commentary track with Noah Baumbach is nauseating, as are the "Mondo Monda" video pieces. Anderson tells Baumbach it's a metaphor, but he doesn't know for what. I've heard that from filmmakers who have made some profound works. Anderson, however, laughs and talks about it like he got away with a joke he didn't expect anyone would take seriously enough to approve.
Old 09-15-21, 04:07 PM
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Re: First Annual Art-House Challenge Discussion Thread

I've been making my way through the Ingmar Bergman's Cinema box set as intended. I'm only up to disc 7. It's not looking good that I'll finish the remaining 23 in the next 15 days, though the way the Reds have been playing those odds keep increasing. In fairness, I have watched nine films plus the entire TV version of Scenes from a Marriage. I've also watched each disc's supplements. Not all discs have had any, but among what has been included are a commentary for Wild Strawberries and Ingmar Bergman on Life and Work, a feature length documentary produced for Swedish TV. Bergman himself didn't direct it so I agree it was prudent of Criterion not to pad the numbers by counting it. Given its production background, though, I'm considering counting it as its own entry.
Old 09-16-21, 05:36 PM
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Re: First Annual Art-House Challenge Discussion Thread

This week's randomly selected prize winner is Gobear . Congratulations! I have DM'd you with the particulars.
Old 09-16-21, 08:23 PM
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Re: First Annual Art-House Challenge Discussion Thread

Thanks, Travis! And thanks to GoldenWheels for sponsoring the challenge!

PM sent
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Old 09-18-21, 09:46 AM
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Re: First Annual Art-House Challenge Discussion Thread

Originally Posted by Travis McClain View Post
I would concur with rbrown498 's assessment

Since this is the first time we've tried a broad Art House challenge and that can be so nebulous, I think it can be helpful going forward if some of us do chance some borderline stuff and end up feeling it wasn't sufficiently Art House-y. If you can elaborate why you feel that way, it could help us create a clearer focus going forward. So maybe this year, give yourselves half-credit for those chances you take that don't work?

(Also: your total counts are only relevant to yourselves anyway so it doesn't make any difference how you score anything. Prizes are drawn entirely randomly from which number post yours is in the list thread.)
I admit Iíve struggled a bit with the theme as my September watches are usually classics and international rather than art house.

Iíve kind of fallen back on the Criterion grandfather clause while Iím evaluating candidates. I did have a hankering to watch Before Sunrise, though, which should count in both categories.

I did watch Come from Away, though!

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