Thursday, April 15, 2010

On Monday, April 12, 2010, Werner Shroeter died. Of all the filmmakers of Das Neue Kino, he was just about my favorite. Not that he had the most consistent career. But at his best, he was responsible for some of the most ecstatic images in the German cinema. Two of my favorite films of his were "The Death of Maria Malibran" and "The Rose King". But he's another filmmaker whose work remains now in the limbo of the obscure, because his films are not available on DVD.

Speaking of ecstatic images, two recent viewings: Tom Ford's "A Single Man" and the Rene Pollesch stage production of "Maedchen in Uniform". Since i've seen these two works, i've been thinking about the whole issue of gay representation, because these two works take "canonical" works of gay culture (Christopher Isherwood's novel, published in 1964, and Christa Winsloe's play, first produced in 1930) and present them in a context of post-Stonewall sensibilities. It is not that the works are "updated"; in fact, in both cases, they are not, they are kept in period. But the changes brought to the original texts point to a different approach to questions of openness and visibility vis-a-vis being gay.

I really want to think more about this, and write about this in greater detail. But one great start is Michael O'Sullivan's consideration of Ford's film "A Single Man" which can be found on his blog (; it is an excellent examination of the changes that Ford made to the original novel, and also an appreciation for what Ford has done with the film. I should also add that Colin Firth's performance is just one of the most subtle and moving performances i've seen. Plus Tom Ford has made Matthew Goode and Nicholas Hoult and Jon Kortajarena so beautiful it hurts!


Post a Comment

<< Home