[A Fistful of Pasta] Latest Reviews

A long ride doesn’t sound too appealing, no. Paradoxically Derrida merely rehashed Heidegger, but post modernism in philosophy is quite different than in art. In a way any director that is not an auteur is, by definition, a post modernist. This of course is not true as post modern film implies a reaction to modern cinema. Tarantino didn’t react to anything in my view. He merely concocts his own special brew, made up of stuff from here and there. In the light of post modern film characteristics Pulp Fiction is way more post modern than Kill Bill, which is nothing more than an elaborate remake of Lady Snowblood.

For me De Palma is very definition of post-modern cinema, and google search trowed me a book in which this is discussed in detail :slight_smile:

Postmodern Hollywood: What’s New in Film and Why It Makes Us Feel So Strange
http://books.google.hr/books?id=QluEtNUBblUC&pg=PA124&lpg=PA124&dq=de+palma%27s+postmodernism&source=bl&ots=aS3V66lI4C&sig=AXhnf6vhc0wM3QVX-6qtVl-fiWY&hl=en&sa=X&ei=sXwbUemkMsim4gTWuIHwDQ&ved=0CEIQ6AEwBA#v=onepage&q=de%20palma%27s%20postmodernism&f=false

“…De Palma’s own recycling of Hitchcock’s images and motifs demonstrates, perhaps more than any other single phenomenon, the way in which the object of representation in the artifacts of postmodern culture is often not reality but other cultural artifacts.”

No, Kill Bill shares a few similarities with Lady Snowblood, but it is an entirely self-contained work.

All Tarantino films are completely different from the films from which he borrows and from the films to which he pays homage.

I have, in the past, quite enjoyed the challenge that is Derrida. I tend to see his ‘slippage’ with language somewhat akin to a playful poetry at times. I’m amazed that this slippage still works in translation though, although it does seems to do so.
Julia Kristeva, on the other hand is utter wank. If you can be bothered to wade through barely decipherable meta-babble (as I did have to once), then it seems to be self-contradictory, and the simplest of theory wrapped up in a deliberately pretentious style.
Neither author, it can be said, are on my bedside table these days, although I’d opt for Derrida anyday for a desert island choice. Derrida I’d keep, and look for twigs to burn. Kristeva’s would be burnt straight away and I’d read the twigs.

“…although I’d opt for Derrida anyday for a desert island choice. Derrida I’d keep, and look for twigs to burn. Kristeva’s would be burnt straight away and I’d read the twigs.”

;D ;D ;D

I have, in the past, quite enjoyed the challenge that is Derrida. I tend to see his 'slippage' with language somewhat akin to a playful poetry at times. I'm amazed that this slippage still works in translation though, although it does seems to do so. Julia Kristeva, on the other hand is utter wank. If you can be bothered to wade through barely decipherable meta-babble (as I did have to once), then it seems to be self-contradictory, and the simplest of theory wrapped up in a deliberately pretentious style. Neither author, it can be said, are on my bedside table these days, although I'd opt for Derrida anyday for a desert island choice. Derrida I'd keep, and look for twigs to burn. Kristeva's would be burnt straight away and I'd read the twigs.

Well said

A long ride doesn't sound too appealing, no. Paradoxically Derrida merely rehashed Heidegger, but post modernism in philosophy is quite different than in art. In a way any director that is not an auteur is, by definition, a post modernist. This of course is not true as post modern film implies a reaction to modern cinema. Tarantino didn't react to anything in my view. He merely concocts his own special brew, made up of stuff from here and there. In the light of post modern film characteristics Pulp Fiction is way more post modern than Kill Bill, which is nothing more than an elaborate remake of Lady Snowblood.

Of course postmodernism is different in Philosophy and art, those are two different things, but there are certain similarities. Postmodern philosophy was, like postmodern art, a reaction to modernity. But I think a discussion about these things would become too academic.

I wouldn’t call De Palma a completely post-modern director; yes, his early films (not his later ones) were inspired by Hitchcock but they were never self-consiously self-referential like Tarantino is, who name-checks films, music and makes you aware of them while watching it. If De Palma is post-modern, then so is Once Upon a Time in the West. In other words, I don’t think so. Leone homaged many different Westerns for his magnum opus but never making the viewer aware that he is. Post-modernism in cinema, for me, is where, be it Godard or Tarantino, they consistently make you realise the characters in the film you’re watching have experienced the same works of art as you have, be that through their dialogue or actions. In other words, the film couldn’t exist without those previous pieces of art being created, whereas as Leone and De Palma’s films can.

Julia Kristeva, on the other hand is utter wank.

This conversation has gone far off-topic, but, if nothing else, Kristeva is the one who introduced Bakhtin to western theorists, and for that I’m thankful.

I don’t know, I have to repeat (rephrase) the question: how could Dressed to Kill exist without Psycho? Or Sisters without Rear window? Or Scarface without Howard Hawks’ Scarface (it can’t be considered straightforward remake, it is remake as much as Kill Bill is remake of Lady Snowblood), etc.
True, De Palma’s later movies are not directly referential like the early ones, but he has maintained his style, but it was probably no longer ‘De Palma doing Hitchcock’, but more ‘De Palma doing De Palma’ :slight_smile:
And De Palma is not hiding his references, like Tarantino he wants you to point finger them.
I agree about Leone, his movies have some post-modern elements, but that is not the essence of his movies.

I like off-topic, and in the spirit of linguistic lubrication in explaining what I meant by “wank”… it was in relation to the metaphorical masturbation we experience here from Kristeva in a bit of self pleasuring…

I think what she’s saying in 7 minutes is that some poets dominate rythmn over words and they carry traces of pre-oedipal mummy-boy sissiness (or are homosexual) - but the dynamic combination of pre-scholastic semiotics and later learnt symbology isn’t quite as sissy - basically poets use rythmn and words to convey stuff in varying degrees… or something?

To abstract - if we agree FAFDM has a poetic dynamic, then Leone’s a bit of a wuss :o :wink:

All of the French structuralists and post-structuralists indulge in their fair share of what I think you accurately call “wank.” I’d also agree that Kristeva is a substantial offender whose work I haven’t found as useful as, say, Barthes, or Lacan. But if you’ve not encountered Bakthin, and you have an interest in semiotics, rhetoric, lit theory, etc., take a look at his work. There’s not a lot of wank, but some of his work is not very clear, due to the multiple translations (unless you’re Russian and can read in the original). But the ideas beneath everything are good and sound and, I think, useful (especially his identification of utterances, dialogue, and heteroglossia).

I’m lovin’ the direction this off-topic has gone, I just wish I had something meaningful to contribute in that regard. You all are much more versed in the scholarly side of film history than I could ever hope to be.

I'm lovin' the direction this off-topic has gone, I just wish I had something meaningful to contribute in that regard. You all are much more versed in the scholarly side of film history than I could ever hope to be.

In philosophy it’s often said that you have to be a bad philosopher to get some response: good philosophers, like for instance Russell or Popper are so clever, and such good writers that no-one feels the urge to contradict them. Nor is there anybody who dares to ask them what they mean by … etc. because this would imply you’re stupid.

Bad philosophers, on the other hand, are discussed permanently, and everybody would like to know what they’re talking about.

And when you say this in a room full of philosophers, you’re supposed to add:

And then there’s Wittgenstein.
(The implication is: he doesn’t fit in any category)

They talk about the magic of the movies, but it is the magic of the… SWDB forum! That’s why I love this place. We can seamlessly go from discussing someones Spaghetti Western film review on A Fistful of Pasta to post-modernism in philosophy, via Tarantino! Viva la SWDB!

It is quite interesting how different the opinions are which director is post-modern, and which is not.

Of the ones named I think that Lynch is clearly not.

I’m not sure why David Lynch was mentioned actually; if anything he has gone furthest from being post-modern that all the other director’s discussed (how is The Straight Story post-modern?). I suppose a case could be made for Blue Velvet, but overall, his career has hardly been full of films that could be called post-modern at all.

Funny you should mention it! I’ve not actually read this, but came across it last month looking for another article:

Revising the Postmodern American Road Movie: David Lynch’s The Straight Storyhttp://www.jstor.org/discover/10.2307/20688392?uid=3739832&uid=2&uid=4&uid=3739256&sid=21101679703991

I spoke too soon! I will have to now read this, to see whether I genuinely got it all wrong. Still, I do think that just about every films post-1960 has been dubbed post-modern, correctly or not.

EDIT: Hmm. Reading the first page preview I’m not sure in fact if the author is arguing that the film is post-modern. Devin Orgeron says that it “suggests a return to the premodern” and that it is David Lynch’s “critique of postmodernity”. So maybe I got it right the first time round, but it’s a nice find Cat.

Okay, got off my ass and finally wrote a review, myself. Kill the Poker Player!

http://fistfulofpasta.com/index.php?go=reviews/killthepoker

Enjoy.

I noticed that there are still some very important films that don’t have reviews on the site yet:

Fistful of Dollars
Keoma
God Forgives I Don’t
Ace High
Bullet for the General
Companeros
Man of the East
Django Prepare a Coffin

JD, do you think we should start doing reviews on the above for the next little while?