Sunday, 19 February 2017

Watching old, old movies part 7

(Part 1) (Part 2) (Part 3) (Part 4) (Part 5) (Part 6)

19. Das Cabinet des Dr. Caligari (1920)
This is the oldest movie on the whole list I think. Fun part is that I've heard of it before (and this movie was 70 years old by the time I was born!), who hasn't heard of Dr. Caligari and his somnambulist? This movie starts out as a young man tells a story of something very odd that happened to him and his fiancée. He tells the story of a carnival coming to the city where they lived and how Dr. Caligari set up a stage there to show off Cesare, a young somnambulist, who would awake at Caligari's command. Soon after the duo arrived in the city people start dying, and after some investigations it becomes clear that Cesare is the culprit, but whether he does it on Caligari's orders or chooses to do it himself is never really explained. There's a chase (which looks extremely funny in a 20's film - all rickety and speeded up), and then there's a huge twist. When the movie finishes you have no idea if all if that really happened and was later covered up, or if it's just the ramblings of a madman. I love it. It's the oldest movie on the list, but thus far one of the most cleverly executed ones. Also Cesare was oddly attractive, and the weird angles of all the sets in the movie were amazing.

20. The Old Dark House (1932)
This one was odd. It's supposed to be a horror comedy, and I guess that may be part of it. Humour very rarely ages well. And wth was up with the disclaimer in the beginning? Like "this is indeed the same Boris Karloff made famous for portraying Frankenstein's monster, but we're not trying to impose on that and this only serves to prove his versatility". And then his role in this movie is a mute, imposing and crazy butler. So basically, not at all different from the monster. "Versatility" lol. And not a speaking role at all. And ofc there's the same "I met her three seconds ago and now I love her and want to spend my life with her bs". Wat. Like ok, I can see that it's supposed to be humourous, with all the banter and the jumpy master of the house and his crazy sister, but it's not comedy that I find funny. Maybe it's too old and I'm too young. I don't know. But the humour of it felt forced and cliché. I mean the running joke of the last 20 minutes was "Saul has no soul"! Heh. Heh. Heh. If this movie had been released today it would've become an instant meme. And the most famous line from the whole movie is: "Have a potato."I'm not even kidding.

21. Rosemary's Baby (1968)
For the first time going through this list I can say that I have seen this movie before. Last time was in my very early teens and my mum told me it was scary. It was interesting to see it all again as an adult. I remember thinking it was very boring as a 13-something-year-old, but as an adult I spent most of those 2 hours completely exasperated with Rosemary and absolutely pissed off with her husband. What right does he have to tell her what to do? What right does he have to throw out her books because he doesn't want her to read them? What right does he have to dictate which doctor she sees during her pregnancy? And why tf is she letting him?! And when she figures out that her neighbours and their friends are in a coven and have recruited her husband, she decides to go to get help from the doctor her neighbours recommended. What part of that makes sense, woman?! In what world isn't it obvious that he's in on it too, if your neighbours insist that you see him? Come on. Some logical thinking would be appreciated. And in what world do you live in that you actually expect to be believed when you tell someone you're being targeted by a group of witches? Honestly. I was looking forward to seeing this movie again, because I was hoping that what I percieved as boring at 13, would have become interesting and maybe even exciting at 26. This movie ended up as a huge disappointment. Don't get me wrong. The story is good, if a little thin in places, the acting is nice, and Mia Farrow is amazing eye-candy, and except for her hair-cut the fashion is beautiful, but the characters are so exasperating. I just can't like any of them, and the characters create the story.

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