Films of 2023:Q2

Before getting into my film list, a few comments:

1. I strongly recommend Michael Powell’s autobiography. Highly entertaining. I also recommend the book “Alone”, by Norman Douglas. Why isn’t this guy more famous?

2. I did a podcast with Russell Hogg and Jasper Sharp. I was a bit disappointed with my own remarks, as I hadn’t seen some of the films for quite a while and my memory is increasingly shaky. Jasper Sharp is an expert on Japanese films, and his comments were especially interesting.

3. I visited the very impressive Bahai temple in Evanston. I’m not religious, but the Bahai religion appeals to me more than most others.

4. I visited the Huntington Gardens near Pasadena. Highly recommended—much improved over when I visited 30 years ago.

5. I finally got around to reading The Marble Faun. The second addition is slightly inferior to the first, as it adds a 5 page conclusion to tie up some loose ends. Hawthorne caved in to the pressure of readers who abhor ambiguity. I liked it even more than The Scarlet Letter, which is generally regarded as the better novel. Perhaps this reflects the fact that literary critics are more interested in people and I am more interested in places.

2023:Q2 films

Newer Films:

Asteroid City  (US)  3.7  Like all Wes Anderson films it’s full of delightful images, including an homage to Cindy Sherman.  Even this sort of sub-par Anderson is better than almost anything else coming out of Hollywood these days.  Actually filmed in Spain.  Takes place in September 1955, the month I was born. 

The Velvet Queen  (France/Tibet)  3.7  When viewed in the right frame of mind, this nature documentary is a near masterpiece.  Be aware, however, that the pace is extremely slow. 

The Innocent  (France, CC)  3.6  It’s basically one of those one joke comedies, but the joke is nicely played out.

Kubrick by Kubrick  (France)  3.5  A viewer of 2001 might assume that Kubrick was opposed to AI.  Not so.  He was so pessimistic about human intelligence that he believed that, “man’s survival depends on the ultra intelligent machine.”

Past Lives  (US/Korea)  3.4  An intelligent film with appealing characters.  I just wish it had a bit more cinematic creativity.  I felt I’d seen it all before.

Godland  (Denmark/Iceland, CC)  3.4  The first third has some stunning scenes of Iceland’s landscape.

Living  (UK)  3.3  Handsome remake of Ikiru, done in a very traditional British style.  Not surprisingly, it falls well short of Kurosawa’s version.  Heartwarming—but a bit too heavy handed.

Suzume  (Japan)  3.0   Maybe I need to stop looking for the next Miyazaki.  This film lacks originality, but does reflect Japanese anxieties about a falling population and the threat of earthquakes.

Air  (US)  2.9  Pleasant exercise in 1984 nostalgia.  Strictly paint by numbers—not an ounce of originality.  Michael Jordan’s aura can cover up a lot of faults.

Older films:

A Matter of Life and Death  (UK, 1946, CC)  3.9  What a pleasure to see this masterpiece (fully restored) on the big screen.  The second time around I already knew the basic plot, and was transfixed by the technical brilliance of Powell and Pressburger’s filmmaking.  I’ve always regarded Black Narcissus as my favorite Powell film, but this is just as good.

The film was censored when it showed in America, as puritanical viewers were offended by an innocent scene depicting a naked little shepherd boy playing a flute.  Americans have such dirty minds!

The Seventh Seal  (Sweden, 1957, CC)  3.9  The Middle Ages as imagined by Swedes in 1957.  Today we’d make a grungier version.  But this was far ahead of almost anything Hollywood would have been capable of doing.  Otherwise, not much to say about this classic; the highest rated film that I’d never gotten around to seeing.  A masterpiece in almost every respect.  Even if you don’t care for the philosophical musings, the acting, dialogue and cinematography are all outstanding.  Hard to believe that Max von Sydow was only 27.  His portrayal of a much older man is even more impressive than Welles in Citizen Kane

Modern directors are presumably just as talented, but working in the shadow of film’s Golden Age.  I presume that’s why they don’t make them like this any more.

On the Waterfront  (US, 1954, CC)  3.8  First time I’d seen the film in 50 years (when it was screened in a high school social studies class!)  Right off the bat I found Lenny Bernstein’s music to be annoying, and the drama is too melodramatic in places.  But Brando’s acting is so good it carries the film.  People recall the heavy dramatic scenes, but he does equally well doing sly and subtle facial expressions. The screenplay has some nice touches.  The famous “coulda been a contender” has the ring of truth, whereas “coulda been the champion” would have sounded like empty bombast. (That’s not to say it was even close to deserving its best picture award, as Rear Window and The Seven Samurai came out the same year.)

I can still recall when mob-controlled unions seemed like one of America’s biggest problem.  The film is a good reminder that the problems we worry about during one decade are replaced by others as time goes by. 

Come and See  (Russia, 1985, CC)  3.8  This film alternates between greatness and clumsiness.  It’s both hyperrealistic and surrealistic.  The horrors one sees are almost too much to take in.  Then at the end we are informed that this was just one Belorussian village out of 628 that were destroyed by the Nazis in a similar fashion.  That horror I cannot even comprehend.  And similar events occurred in Ukraine.  And in Poland.  And in China.  And in lots of other countries.  And WWII is just one of thousands of wars.  People just block all this out. It’s all too much to absorb.

Then I think about the modern and rich society that I live in, and how so many people are deeply depressed despite their good fortune.  In the end, I don’t believe we know much of anything about human happiness. It’s just too hard a topic—for me, for economists, for philosophers, for everyone.  As I get older, I become a radical agnostic on the subject of happiness.  What causes it?  Is utility a net positive or a net negative?  Do we even know how happy we are?

Easy Living  (US, 1937, CC)  3.7  Great fun.  But how could you go wrong when you start with the Platonic ideal of screwball comedy plots and have Preston Sturges write the screenplay?

Hanagatami  (Japan, 2017)  3.6  Ignore the numerical rating, as I don’t really know how to evaluate this interesting film.  The most generous interpretation is to view the striking color palate as a visual way of expressing the feeling of being young.  For the most part, I thought those experiments worked, hence the relatively high rating.  But this sort of experimental film should be relatively short, as we are not all that interested in the characters or the narrative.  But it’s quite long—way too long in my view.  And a bit repetitive.

I Knew Her Well  (Italy, 1965, CC)  3.6  Is there any more appealing setting than Italy in the 1960s?  Gorgeous black and white photography and glamorous faces makes Rome seem like the most delightful place in the universe.

The Naked Spur  (US, 1953, CC)  3.6  Technicolor Anthony Mann western with Jimmy Stewart, Robert Ryan and Janet Leigh.  These westerns remind me a bit of Asian art—lots of small variations around a common structure.

Yumeji  (Japan, 1991, CC)  3.5  This film is far from perfect, but it’s a feast for the eyes for lovers of Taisho era art and design.

Record of a Tenement Gentlemen  (Japan, 1947, CC)  3.5  Weird title—I presume something was lost in translation.  A charming movie, but it falls well short of the Ozu films that came a few years later.  It’s quite interesting to see Japan as it was in 1947.

Winchester 73  (US, 1950, CC)  3.5  Classic Anthony Mann/Jimmy Stewart western with a pretty impressive cast.  Some of the smaller roles are played by actors that would soon become well known.  Watch for a very young Tony Curtis, and Rock Hudson playing an Indian chief.  (The film is not exactly PC.)

Demonlover  (French, 2002, CC)  3.5  Like many French films, this seems highly intelligent, stylish, and skillfully directed, but somehow a bit empty inside.  Or does this reaction reflect a lack of sophistication in Anglo-Saxon viewers?  Given the subject matter, it’s rather surprising that this film doesn’t seem dated after 21 years.

A Tale of Springtime  (French, 1989, CC)  3.5  More than almost any other director, Eric Rohmer keeps making the same film.  There’s not much to criticize, but also not much to get excited about.

The Friends of Eddie Coyle  (US, 1973)  3.5  Has a much more authentic feel than the typical crime film. 

Dragnet Girl  (Japan, 1933, CC)  3.4  The camera work is surprisingly dynamic, almost baroque at times.  It’s quite a contrast with the calm, static approach Ozu uses in his postwar films.  Still it does have a few of the poetic visual images that I associate with his best work.  And you’ll rarely see a gangster film with so little action.

Get Carter   (UK, 1971)  3.4  There’s lot to enjoy here including the mod style of the early 1970s, British gangsters in Newcastle, and of course the ubiquitous Michael Caine.  The young Caine was the best version.

The Man With A Shotgun  (Japan, 1961, CC)  3.3  Seijan Suzuki.  Testosterone!  Toxic masculinity!

Epidemic  (Denmark, 1987, CC)  3.3   It’s easy to see why this film was panned by critics—it’s something of a mess.  But I’d much rather watch a bad Lars von Trier film than a good film from a mediocre director.  Much more experimental than the other two films in the Europe trilogy, and most of the experiments don’t work.  But a few do.

The Passionate Friends   (UK, 1949, CC)  3.3  David Lean does a very nice job directing this romance, but the underlying story is too implausible to be believable.

Giants and Toys  (Japan, 1958)  3.3  As a satire of business (and the Americanization of Japanese culture) it’s far too silly to be taken seriously.  But it does have an infectious energy, largely due to the efforts of the lead actress.  The Technicolor images capture a moment in time when Japan was pivoting from the drab post war years (depicted in previous B&W films) to the soaring economic growth of the 1960s.

Infernal Affairs II  (HK, 2003, CC)  3.3  A prequel to the much better original Infernal Affairs.  The production is generally pretty high quality, but it’s marred by an excessively convoluted plot and some overly melodramatic music.

Center Stage  (HK, 1991, CC)  3.3  This quasi-documentary biopic about a Chinese silent movie star is an odd experiment, and it doesn’t really work.  So why the positive rating?  Maggie Cheung’s face.

Breakdown  (US, 1997)  3.2  This formulaic picture is a bit too predictable for my taste.  But Kurt Russell is better than I expected and the director does a nice job of keeping things from getting bogged down.

Detective Bureau 2-3: Go To Hell, Bastards!  (Japan, 1963, CC)  3.2   Strictly for Seijan Suzuki fans.  Great title.

The Great Silence  (Italy, 1968, CC)  3.2  A spaghetti western directed by someone other than Sergio Leone.  Now I realize that what I’d always thought of as Leone’s style is actually the style of spaghetti westerns more broadly.  Apparently, they made dozens of these films.

The Hitch-hiker  (US, 1953, CC)  3.1 This noir has no female characters, and yet was directed by Ida Lupino.  I wonder how this film impacted people’s willingness to pick up hitchhikers?

Election  (Hong Kong, 2005, CC)  3.0  It’s OK to have a complex plot that makes you work, and it’s OK to have an implausible film.  But it’s not OK to have both.  I just didn’t feel like making the effort to figure out who was who in all of the backstabbing.

Honor Among Thieves  (US, 1931, CC)  3.0  A very young Claudette Colbert in a pleasant romcom. 

Dream Lover  (US, 1994, CC)  2.9  It’s interesting comparing ordinary Hollywood films like this one with those made by talented directors.  This film is a typical example of the former—quite uneven, with some very nicely acted scenes and then some really clunky “dream sequences.”  Directing talent in Hollywood seems to be in very short supply.  Why is that?  Why is it so hard to make a good film?  A country with 330 million people must have hundreds of Hitchcocks.  Or is this what consumers want? 

Jade  (US, 1995, CC)  2.9  One of those 1990s “erotic thrillers” that has a silly plot, corny music and cringe-worthy sex scenes.  But at least it was directed by William Friedkin, who had a certain visual flair.  Oddly, the part of the film I found most interesting was the brief glimpses of paintings on the wall of the rich guy’s house.  Some really nice stuff by people like Jacob van Ruisdael and Balthus.  How do those exquisite paintings get into a film like this?

Color of Night  (US, 1994, CC)  2.7  This campy film is so bad that it almost works as a black comedy, but not quite.  To make that work you must go all in.  At times, the director seems to think the film can be taken seriously.

Criminal Passion  (US, 1994, CC)  2.6  Another of the seemingly endless unerotic “erotic thrillers” from 1994.  Hard to believe it was made by the same director as Desert Hearts.  So much for the auteur theory.

Margot at the Wedding  (US, 2007, CC)  2.5   Well, at least we are spared the wedding.  Otherwise, this is strictly for fans of family dysfunction porn.  Not sure why humans are so fascinated by a peep at the exposed id, not censored by politeness. 

Infernal Affairs III  (HK, 2003, CC)  2.0  A sad end to a promising trilogy.  I understand wanting to use Tony Leung, but he’s miscast in a very confused role.  The directors really needed some adult supervision.



30 Responses to “Films of 2023:Q2”

  1. Gravatar of copans copans
    3. July 2023 at 15:54

    “But how could you go wrong when you start with the Platonic ideal of screwball comedy plots and have Preston Sturges write the screenplay?”

    Answer: Cast Ray Milland as the romantic lead. There is such magic every time Jean Arthur and Edward Arnold are in a scene together that it makes the absence of magic in the central relationship all too apparent. But what a movie.

  2. Gravatar of Ray Lopez Ray Lopez
    3. July 2023 at 16:04

    I’m not qualified to review or talk about films since I very rarely watch films, and my idea of a good film is “The Mechanic” (1970s) with Charles Bronson (so many levels of irony in this film, omg don’t get me started; and the ending?! Never saw that coming, good stuff), and I’ve not seen but one Indiana Jones film, I’ve never seen “ET”, and the only non-G rated film I saw as a youth was “Billy Jack” (nice soundtrack), followed by “The Stuntman” (Peter O’Toole) but, I was stunned to read this: “The Seventh Seal (Sweden, 1957, CC) ” and Sumner’s never seen this classic until now?? Neither have I, but I’m not into films. I do know they have Death playing chess (don’t know who wins). What else does Sumner not know??

  3. Gravatar of ssumner ssumner
    3. July 2023 at 16:17

    Remember the little boy in class who didn’t know any of the answers, but kept clowning around so that people would pay attention to him?

    I have commenters like that.

  4. Gravatar of Dylan Matthews Dylan Matthews
    3. July 2023 at 18:25

    Possible “why Douglas is not more famous” explanation:

  5. Gravatar of dirk dirk
    3. July 2023 at 18:47

    Agree 100% that Leonard Bernstein’s On the Waterfront soundtrack is annoying. The superior Bernstein is Elmer, who composed the scores for The Great Escape, The Magnificent Seven and Stripes.

  6. Gravatar of ssumner ssumner
    3. July 2023 at 21:17

    Dylan, Thanks for the link. But if we plan to exclude all artists with bad morals . . . I wonder how many would be left?

    Should we stop watching Roman Polanski films?

  7. Gravatar of David S David S
    4. July 2023 at 01:02

    Here’s two pieces of absolutely useless trivia:

    -There’s a brief shot of the North Quincy T station parking lot depicted in The Friends of Eddie Coyle. Most of that has been redeveloped as a mixed use residential complex.

    -The parking garage in Get Carter has also been demolished. The scene features the most accurate portrayal of architects in all of cinema.

  8. Gravatar of Sara Sara
    4. July 2023 at 07:27

    Who has the time to watch so many films?

    The next time you’re lounging around on a couch, which appears to be quite often, you might want to consider the back breaking work that some rancher is doing in Texas — you know the guys you consistently berate and call Nazis– or the blue collar miners who worry about you outsourcing their careers to the Chinese, for higher profit margins and no discernible difference in price at monopoly retail stores.

    But David Ricardo man. I read a book and Ricardo told me…

    The NYT told me…

    I thought it was correct dude. I didn’t know, because I was watching movies.

  9. Gravatar of ssumner ssumner
    4. July 2023 at 08:23

    sara, You said.

    “or the blue collar miners who worry about you outsourcing their careers to the Chinese,”

    LOL, The US is a net exporter of coal. Most coal mining jobs have been lost due to automation, which (thankfully) Luddites like you were unable to stop.

    Maybe you ought to read a book on mining.

  10. Gravatar of Ricardo Ricardo
    4. July 2023 at 11:10

    Commenters wouldn’t come to your blog to get attention. You don’t receive much traffic.

    They are simply refuting what you have to say about vaccines, legal comments, etc. You basically call anything you disagree with a conspiracy, and everyone you don’t like terrorists, and it’s bat shit crazy.

    You’ve been successfully refuted a number of times now, especially about vaccines, supreme court packing, your comments on NATO, Tiktok, your bizarre Trump/republican hatred, etc, and you just don’t like it when people present evidence that is contrary to your position.

    As Kennedy Jr. often says. “Show me where I’m wrong.” He’s still waiting, twenty years later, for anyone with guts to debate him. You can run and name call, and scream conspiracy, but that’s not science.

  11. Gravatar of mike mike
    4. July 2023 at 17:42

    Love reading your reviews as always. 3.7 feels generous for “Easy Living” — with the slapstick and endless malapropisms it dragged for me even at 88 min, and as copans pointed out Ray Milland is a stiff in this one. Nowhere near as good as say The Palm Beach Story.

  12. Gravatar of ssumner ssumner
    4. July 2023 at 21:48

    Mike, You may be right. I just thought it was the perfect screwball comedy plot, and I like Jean Arthur.

    On the other hand, it wasn’t in the class of Bringing up Baby or The Lady Eve, so maybe I rated it too high.

  13. Gravatar of steve steve
    5. July 2023 at 04:38

    I love Sara, really. I was thinking the same thing when I saw how long this gibberish posting was: Who’s got the time (or inclination) to watch so much crap? Honestly, even if you’re retired – get to the gym or the pool for a few hours every day, exercise helps with dementia.

  14. Gravatar of Wednesday assorted links – Marginal REVOLUTION Wednesday assorted links - Marginal REVOLUTION
    5. July 2023 at 07:57

    […] 6. More Scott Sumner movie reviews. […]

  15. Gravatar of MSS1914 MSS1914
    5. July 2023 at 08:19

    Regarding “Come and See”, your review made me think about another Russian movie – “Hard to be a God” (based on the 1964 novel by the same name)

    I suspect we are able to live out our lives amongst so much suffering because, for the most part, we don’t have any power to stop it from happening. If we did have the power to stop it, but were forced not to for various reasons, it would drive us mad. That’s one of the main themes of “Hard to be a God”.

    If you haven’t seen it, I’d recommend it. The film is very violent, but I think worth a watch. The book is good too.

  16. Gravatar of Oli Oli
    5. July 2023 at 09:10

    Scott, wondering if you ever enjoy animated films?

    I generally avoid superhero films but I enjoyed ‘across the spider verse’ and it was interesting to see a totally different, non-realistic, animation style. I wonder if many future movies will be inspired by this?

  17. Gravatar of ssumner ssumner
    5. July 2023 at 09:31

    Steve, “Who’s got the time (or inclination) to watch so much crap?” Your comment on Sara makes me wonder who has the time or inclination to post so many long tedious comments in a monetary blog that no one pays attention to? Do these commenters simply enjoy typing? Do they think other people are impressed by their Putin worship?

    MSS1914, Thanks for the tip.

    Oli, Yes, I enjoy animated films, especially Miyazaki’s films.

  18. Gravatar of Ray Lopez Ray Lopez
    5. July 2023 at 11:27

    SS: “Oli, Yes, I enjoy animated films, especially Miyazaki’s films”. A true story: as a White most of my many gfs (save one) and partners have been Asian (incl my present PH partner) but in the early 2000s we saw the famous Miyazki film that premiered in the USA that I thought had a great plot, great animation (before CGI took off) great score, etc, but most of the movie theatre was indifferent and my tall, beautiful Chinese gf at the time, a brilliant girl who was mentioned in the NY Times for her work and later married a better White than me, didn’t like it either. Moral of the story: ‘great art’ is not appreciated by most people, what is great is defined by society, and often only becomes ‘great’ in retrospect. Same is true for Melville’s Moby Dick, which was considered a flop when first published.

    Great Scot! I’ve finally left a comment that wasn’t negative about our gracious host?

  19. Gravatar of Mark Z Mark Z
    5. July 2023 at 12:05

    Well Bernstein was always famous for his conducting, not his composing.

    How did you think the first Infernal Affairs compared with The Departed? I honestly like the latter better. The slow motion cuts and sad, saccharine music that would play during a couple of the emotional scenes in Infernal Affairs was too cheesy for my taste. Though the corrupt cop getting his comeuppance at the end of the departed was a bit cliche.

  20. Gravatar of Tom Mannell Tom Mannell
    5. July 2023 at 17:52

    Hi Scot,
    Is it alright if I talk about movies?
    Come And See is indeed heartbreaking. Have you seen Tarkovsky’s Ivan’s Childhood? Or The Red and the White? Interesting and both are perhaps more psychologically rather than physically brutal.
    I liked Election, aka Triad Election, a lot more than you. I’ll watch and love any of Johnnie To’s action films. Drug War is a favorite. He’s a real craftsman, reminding me of Soderbergh but in the Hong Kong action milieu.
    Yes, yes, Get Carter. And the Long Good Friday is a wonderful film British gangster film from that era. And of course, Stephen Frear’s The Hit, which I think you have seen and discussed.
    Your reviews are always appreciated, and I watch a number of films that I’ve missed on your recommendation.

  21. Gravatar of steve steve
    5. July 2023 at 18:21

    You seem to appreciate older films. Ever thought about doing a series looking only at older movies? We wanted our son to appreciate film history so we started with Birth of a Nation then on to Keaton, Chaplin, King Vidor, Metropolis, Kinugasa (sp?), Fields, Barrymore, Capra, Lang, early Ford and Hitchcock and stopped at Marx Brothers. It was a lot of fun.

    Any thoughts on Ozu’s I Was Born, But? Film buff neighbor claims one of best of the 30s but seemed cutesy when he had us watch it.


  22. Gravatar of ssumner ssumner
    5. July 2023 at 19:17

    Mark, It’s been so long I don’t recall which I liked better. Obviously, The Departed was more “polished”.

    Tom, Yes, Tarkovsky is one of my favorite directors, probably my favorite European director.

    I can see why some people like Election—it has some good features. Agree on the Long Good Friday.

    Steve, I like early Ozu, including the one you mentioned (which reminded me of “The Little Rascals”, which might have been before your time.) But I much prefer his 1950s films.

  23. Gravatar of ReverendWicksCherrycoke ReverendWicksCherrycoke
    5. July 2023 at 19:42

    Thanks for the recommendations.

    “The Spirit of the Beehive” is on Criterion and worth your attention if you’ve never seen it, a sin there’s still no 4k digital transfer. Mikhail Kalatozov’s “The Cranes are Flying” and “I Am Cuba” are available in 4k on the Mosfilm youtube channel, previously hard to track down due to distribution problems, must be seen for the camerawork and staging alone. A more recent film you may have overlooked is “The Red Turtle”. Probably only minor Studio Ghibli, but Ghibli nonetheless and watching them collide with Michael Dudok de Wit absent Miyazaki’s habits of mind is fascinating.

    There are various 70mm, 6-track stereo screenings of the full, post 1989 restoration “Lawrence of Arabia” popping up in the wake of the 60th anniversary; if you can track one down its a good a time as you’ll ever have in a cinema.

  24. Gravatar of ssumner ssumner
    5. July 2023 at 20:50

    Cherrycoke, Lots of great suggestions. I’ve seen The Spirit of the Beehive (great film), and also the excellent Cranes are Flying.

    Lawrence of Arabia is one of the 8 or 10 films that MUST be seen on a huge screen.

    I’ll look for the others.

  25. Gravatar of Colin Marshall Colin Marshall
    5. July 2023 at 22:56

    Record of a Tenement Gentleman has also been translated as A Who’s-Who of the Backstreets, which gets more of the spirit of the original title across.

  26. Gravatar of Christian List Christian List
    6. July 2023 at 10:20

    Excellent taste in movies, as always. I really try to watch contemporary movies sometimes as well. But I can hardly find any great ones since a few years. My impression is that it’s gotten even worse since the pandemic.

    Of course, it could also be possible that movies are like old wine, and that one recognizes the really good ones only a few years later, with some distance. Nevertheless, the impression remains that quality and quantity of great movies has declined somewhat.

    Perhaps it’s also a question of time and age: at the end of one’s life, one has already seen so many good movies that new ones have an increasingly difficult time breaking into this phalanx. A simple consequence of time and probability.

  27. Gravatar of anon/portly anon/portly
    6. July 2023 at 12:31

    “Now I realize that what I’d always thought of as Leone’s style is actually the style of spaghetti westerns more broadly. Apparently, they made dozens of these films.”

    I thought the obvious thing here was that the success of the Dollars films induced others to copy Leone’s style. I checked with a friend of mine, something of an expert in this area, and that’s his view.

    He suggested that the best non-Leone’s are The Big Gundown, Death Rides a Horse and The Mercenary, but he’s not too enthusiastic about them. (He likes My Name is Nobody a lot, but it was produced by Leone). As to The Great Silence:

    “I don’t like [it], but it has many supporters. I guess the points in its favor are Kinski and snow. A lot of people like the twist at the end but I find it puerile.”

  28. Gravatar of Liam Liam
    7. July 2023 at 12:42

    Steve, what age did you show these to your son? I have two 7 & 8 yr old girls and I love the idea but I doubt if they would hold the attention of 21st century children (“boring”); so I’m impressed that you managed it with your son.

  29. Gravatar of ssumner ssumner
    9. July 2023 at 10:50

    Colin, Yes, a better title.

    Anon, I like Leone, but not enough to watch his imitators.

    Liam, I think you need to start children on Buster Keaton when they are very young, before they learn from other kids that silent films are “boring”.

  30. Gravatar of anon/portly anon/portly
    13. July 2023 at 08:17

    “I like Leone, but not enough to watch his imitators.”

    Are you sure you didn’t mean “I love Leone?”

    Anyway, the obvious problem with watching his imitators is that this cuts into your Leone watching time. You can’t watch those Leone films too many times!

    “I think you need to start children on Buster Keaton when they are very young….”

    You’d think with the rise of things like “Jackass” and stupid stunts that Keaton and his non-stupid stunts would have gained more of a following.

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