Thursday, September 21, 2006

Todd A-O

The other night, me and my friend Gail went to IFS (the CU campus film series) to see Todd Solondz breakthrough flick, Welcome to the Dollhouse. Here’s the sweet-ass original title track from the movie:

Welcome to the Dollhouse - The Quadratics

This was the third time I’d seen it (but my first time on 35mm) and I loved it more than ever. I’m a huge Solondz fan and I think all his movies are fantastic, but for whatever reason Dollhouse was always one of my least favorites. However, it’d been a few years since I’d seen it and as I was watching it this time it seemed to me that in terms of tone, structure and balance, this may be one of the most perfectly crafted American films of the last 10 years. I know that sounds like a complete exaggeration, but it truly is such a beautiful, clever, and sophisticated work. It has this tightly oppressive structure of expression and mood which keeps the characters and the audience trapped in this suffocating institutional nightmare. But at the same time, this rigid atmosphere is spun to be just flexible (even fragile) enough that it allows its doomed characters small momentary but no less meaningful acts of rebellion and escape. Little beautiful moments of hope that make the rest of existence just bearable. It’s this highly sophisticated tonal balance of hopelessness and transcendence, exaggeration and penetrating truth, and humor and pain, all contained within this uniform structure that I think makes the film (and all his films, really) such a high achievement.

Anyway, my buddy Dave was taking tickets that night, and he told me that Solondz, after having invested his life savings into his most recent film, Palindromes (because no studio would touch it) had gone bankrupt. That really freaked me out. I personally think Solondz is one of the overall best, most unique and most important recent filmmakers anywhere. Most living directors are nowhere near his level of wit and deep observation, and everything he makes has a tangible and lasting impact on the face of modern filmmaking. How could we allow such an important artist to go under? Well, I did a little research on the intra-net and found out that in fact, no, Todd Solondz managed to recoup his initial investment due to the film's relative success on the foreign market and is currently at work on another project (scheduled to be released in 2008). Thank god for open-minded foreigners like Laz. I think it’s funny though that the most political and topical film (dealing unblinkingly with abortion and the U.S. ‘culture wars’) of a quintessentially American director would only be able to make any money in Europe. What the fuck.

What I love about his movies is that nothing comes easy. These are bleak portraits of flawed and often cruel characters, but there are no cheap shots. The films’ moralities are so complex and ambiguous that every moment of pain, laughter, and identification you feel is a total mindfuck that forces you to reexamine yourself and your culture. Although Solondz’ lack of narrational moral guidance is a huge part of his films’ power, it’s still great to hear him explain the motivations behind his movies. Here’s a really great interview I found with him from this online magazine called The Believer. It’s the transcription of three conversations between Solondz and a novelist friend as they walk aimlessly through New York City. Laz told me she saw Solondz speak after a showing of Palindromes at a film fest in Stockholm, and I am eternally jealous. I need to move to a new town.


Blogger Minko Chen said...

woolrich outlet store
cheap football shirts
mulberry handbags
north face outlet
michael kors handbags outlet
true religion jeans outlet
jordan shoes 2015
nike foamposite
kate spade uk
cyber monday deals
air max shoes
babyliss flat iron
coach outlet online
mulberry outlet,mulberry handbags outlet
louis vuitton outlet store
marc jacobs
barbour jackets
the north face outlet
vans shoes
abercrombie and fitch

December 16, 2015 6:06 AM  
Blogger oakleyses said...

cheap oakley sunglasses, nike air max, jordan shoes, polo outlet, longchamp outlet, louis vuitton, ray ban sunglasses, tory burch outlet, longchamp pas cher, oakley sunglasses, replica watches, longchamp outlet, nike free run, louis vuitton outlet, nike air max, polo ralph lauren, christian louboutin outlet, nike outlet, oakley sunglasses, burberry pas cher, oakley sunglasses, tiffany jewelry, louis vuitton, prada outlet, replica watches, ray ban sunglasses, jordan pas cher, sac longchamp pas cher, chanel handbags, tiffany and co, ugg boots, oakley sunglasses wholesale, longchamp outlet, uggs on sale, polo ralph lauren outlet online, christian louboutin uk, michael kors pas cher, gucci handbags, christian louboutin, christian louboutin shoes, prada handbags, nike roshe, nike free, air max, kate spade outlet, ray ban sunglasses, ugg boots, louboutin pas cher

May 13, 2016 8:01 AM  
Blogger oakleyses said...

michael kors outlet, hollister pas cher, ralph lauren uk, michael kors, north face uk, coach outlet store online, true religion outlet, mulberry uk, abercrombie and fitch uk, guess pas cher, true religion outlet, lululemon canada, ray ban pas cher, michael kors, uggs outlet, vans pas cher, nike free uk, michael kors outlet, michael kors outlet online, replica handbags, nike tn, michael kors outlet, oakley pas cher, burberry outlet, polo lacoste, nike air max uk, nike blazer pas cher, hollister uk, michael kors outlet online, sac hermes, uggs outlet, michael kors outlet online, burberry handbags, new balance, coach purses, true religion jeans, north face, kate spade, ray ban uk, michael kors outlet online, true religion outlet, nike air max, converse pas cher, nike air force, nike air max uk, nike roshe run uk, sac vanessa bruno

May 13, 2016 8:06 AM  
Blogger oakleyses said...

ghd hair, hollister clothing, ray ban, iphone cases, celine handbags, oakley, insanity workout, converse, abercrombie and fitch, instyler, gucci, lululemon, ferragamo shoes, baseball bats, nike huaraches, beats by dre, babyliss, louboutin, new balance shoes, mac cosmetics, hollister, herve leger, hermes belt, giuseppe zanotti outlet, timberland boots, vans, valentino shoes, nike trainers uk, asics running shoes, p90x workout, nfl jerseys, nike air max, vans outlet, reebok outlet, soccer shoes, north face outlet, soccer jerseys, converse outlet, longchamp uk, nike roshe run, wedding dresses, ralph lauren, hollister, bottega veneta, north face outlet, mont blanc pens, nike air max, jimmy choo outlet, mcm handbags, chi flat iron

May 13, 2016 8:11 AM  
Blogger oakleyses said...

canada goose outlet, canada goose, toms shoes, links of london, karen millen uk, doudoune moncler, pandora jewelry, louis vuitton, marc jacobs, montre pas cher, canada goose outlet, moncler uk, moncler, pandora charms, juicy couture outlet, louis vuitton, thomas sabo, replica watches, canada goose jackets, ugg uk, ugg, canada goose, ugg,uggs,uggs canada, louis vuitton, wedding dresses, juicy couture outlet, canada goose, swarovski, moncler, canada goose outlet, supra shoes, moncler outlet, lancel, coach outlet, canada goose uk, louis vuitton, moncler outlet, moncler, louis vuitton, swarovski crystal, ugg pas cher, barbour, pandora uk, barbour uk, ugg,ugg australia,ugg italia, moncler, hollister, pandora jewelry

May 13, 2016 8:15 AM  

Post a Comment

<< Home