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PostPosted: Tue Aug 19, 2014 6:18 pm 
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MoC wrote:
One of the Fellini films which has been out of circulation for many years, I clowns [The Clowns] has long been revered by Fellini enthusiasts for the last several decades since its release as among the Maestro's finest works — a thrilling spectacle once seen for the first time, and a picture which after multiple viewings easily takes its place alongside such classics as La strada, Le notti di Cabiria, La dolce vita, Satyricon, Amarcord... but in a register all its own.

I clowns plays out in dazzling colour and in episodic cascade, just as in Fellini's late-60s-and-beyond films. As the circus rolls into town, and the big-tent is erected, the clowns execute their acts with feverish can-you-believe-it bravado. It's all true — and yet not a "documentary" per se; rather, something inbetween a dramatic-comedic portrayal of gags-at-play and the memoria of all that makes the spark for childhood inspiration to ignite into creative virtuosity... and/or into something like Federico Fellini.

One of the great and underacknowledged treasures of the cinema, I clowns takes its place alongside such films as Bergman's Carnies' Twilight, Ophuls' Lola Montès, Étaix's Yoyo, and Tati's Parade as one of the grand portraits of the clowning circus, of a bygone era of the wandering entertainer. The Masters of Cinema Series is proud to present Federico Fellini's I clowns in a special Dual Format (Blu-ray + DVD) edition for the first time in the UK.

This blurb is possibly more entertaining than the film itself. I guess "out of circulation for many years" is a better sales pitch than the truth of "in circulation (and on a nice BluRay) for several years." It's a nice enough film, but does anybody seriously consider it one of the greatest films ever made, as MoC is desperate to have us believe?

And the kicker (and confirmation that they're taking the piss?) has to be "Carnies' Twilight"(!), just pretentiously slipped in there as the only title translated into English.


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 Post subject: Re: BD 95 I clowns
PostPosted: Tue Aug 19, 2014 6:28 pm 
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Well, there were more years that it wasn't on Blu-ray than there have been years since. Also, don't forget all of the years before the film's creation in 1970 when it didn't even exist: "At last, own the film that ancient Romans never dreamed would be..."


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 Post subject: Re: BD 95 I clowns
PostPosted: Tue Aug 19, 2014 6:40 pm 
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zedz wrote:
And the kicker (and confirmation that they're taking the piss?) has to be "Carnies' Twilight"(!), just pretentiously slipped in there as the only title translated into English.
For those, like me, who had no idea WTF "Carnies' Twilight" was - even after Google gave no help - its Sawdust and Tinsel. Is this even a direct translation? (Google Translate says Gycklarnas is simply "Sawdust" and only brings up the Bergman film). I've run across some bizarre alternate translations for movie titles in English, but this is up there.

Hey Zedz, weren't you aware that this is the very first time I Clowns has been released on Dual Format in the United Kingdom*? That has to be worth something....

*I hate it when companies do this shit. Like we're supposed to be impressed by such a fact..


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 Post subject: Re: BD 95 I clowns
PostPosted: Tue Aug 19, 2014 6:45 pm 
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I continue to root for MoC of course, but I think their descriptions have lapsed into some really bad writing in the past year or so.
Quote:
a thrilling spectacle once seen for the first time,
Not sure what that part means. Weren't all films once seen for the first time?

The film is not a documentary but rather
Quote:
something inbetween a dramatic-comedic portrayal of gags-at-play and the memoria of all that makes the spark for childhood inspiration to ignite into creative virtuosity... and/or into something like Federico Fellini.
That's the memoria of all that makes a sentence end up as a train wreck.


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 Post subject: Re: BD 95 I clowns
PostPosted: Tue Aug 19, 2014 6:56 pm 
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Minkin wrote:
Is this even a direct translation? (Google Translate says Gycklarnas is simply "Sawdust" and only brings up the Bergman film).
I don't know Swedish but have read in several places that Gycklarnas Afton means something like "Twilight of the Clowns." But "The Clowns' Evening" would be a better translation, in my opinion; "Twilight of the Clowns" sounds too Nietzschean or horror-oriented.
Many Bergman films have not been known by one English title, and many of the English titles have been unfortunate mistranslations or variations. Sawdust and Tinsel was also released as "Naked Night," and some of the English titles of Bergman films seemed designed to sound slightly ribald.


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 Post subject: Re: BD 95 I clowns
PostPosted: Tue Aug 19, 2014 7:19 pm 
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While Gycklarnas does translate to Sawdust according to Google, Gycklarna and Gycklare apparently translate to Jester/Clown. Perhaps that is where the original confusion was made.


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 Post subject: Re: BD 95 I clowns
PostPosted: Tue Aug 19, 2014 7:31 pm 
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Minkin wrote:
Hey Zedz, weren't you aware that this is the very first time I Clowns has been released on Dual Format in the United Kingdom*? That has to be worth something....

*I hate it when companies do this shit. Like we're supposed to be impressed by such a fact..

I believe it's also the first time it's been released in conjunction with the retitling of a Bergman film! If there's no sticker on the cover commemorating this fact, no sale.


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 Post subject: Re: BD 95 I clowns
PostPosted: Tue Aug 19, 2014 7:33 pm 
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Gregory wrote:
. . .the memoria of all that makes the spark for childhood inspiration to ignite into creative virtuosity...

I'm pretty sure I've got a Japanese notebook with this inspirational verse printed on the cover.


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 Post subject: Re: BD 95 I clowns
PostPosted: Tue Aug 19, 2014 8:12 pm 
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Gregory wrote:
Many Bergman films have not been known by one English title...

But just to clarify, Sawdust and Tinsel has never been known anywhere on Planet Earth as Carnies' Twilight, correct?


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 Post subject: Re: BD 95 I clowns
PostPosted: Tue Aug 19, 2014 8:31 pm 
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Right, at least not as far as I can tell. I wasn't trying to excuse "Carnies' Twilight," just trying to suggest that this is hardly new with English titles of Bergman's films.


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 Post subject: Re: BD 95 I clowns
PostPosted: Tue Aug 19, 2014 8:57 pm 
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Jeff wrote:
Gregory wrote:
Many Bergman films have not been known by one English title...

But just to clarify, Sawdust and Tinsel has never been known anywhere on Planet Earth as Carnies' Twilight, correct?

Only in Craig Keller's mind.


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 Post subject: Re: BD 95 I clowns
PostPosted: Tue Aug 19, 2014 9:53 pm 

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Maybe a contest for the next round of announcements, in which they tweet Craig Keller's Made-Up Titles and we try to guess what the films actually are...?


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 Post subject: Re: BD 95 I clowns
PostPosted: Tue Aug 19, 2014 9:55 pm 
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Jeff wrote:
Gregory wrote:
Many Bergman films have not been known by one English title...

But just to clarify, Sawdust and Tinsel has never been known anywhere on Planet Earth as Carnies' Twilight, correct?

I originally assumed the same was true of Jean-Luc Godard's Crazy Pete, but I've since seen evidence that Pierrot le fou really was called that on a handful of misbegotten occasions.


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 Post subject: Re: BD 95 I clowns
PostPosted: Tue Aug 19, 2014 10:03 pm 
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zedz wrote:
Gregory wrote:
. . .the memoria of all that makes the spark for childhood inspiration to ignite into creative virtuosity...

I'm pretty sure I've got a Japanese notebook with this inspirational verse printed on the cover.

Yep, I think I've tracked down who's writing MoC's press releases:
ImageImage
Image
Image


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 Post subject: Re: BD 95 I clowns
PostPosted: Wed Aug 20, 2014 1:22 am 
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EddieLarkin wrote:
Jeff wrote:
But just to clarify, Sawdust and Tinsel has never been known anywhere on Planet Earth as Carnies' Twilight, correct?

Only in Craig Keller's mind.

Damn! I wish he would have found a way to work Fellini's The Sucklecalves into that description too.


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 Post subject: Re: BD 95 I clowns
PostPosted: Wed Aug 20, 2014 3:14 am 
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I actually think that Wild Oats is a better title than the meaningless-in-English The 400 Blows, but it's far too late now.


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 Post subject: Re: BD 95 I clowns
PostPosted: Wed Aug 20, 2014 3:54 am 
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EddieLarkin wrote:
While Gycklarnas does translate to Sawdust according to Google, Gycklarna and Gycklare apparently translate to Jester/Clown. Perhaps that is where the original confusion was made.
Gycklare = clown, jester, joker (singular or plural). Gycklarna is the definite plural. Gycklarnas is the definite plural genitive. Afton = evening. Sawdust = sågspån. Tinsel = glitter.

The Google translation engine is guessing that gycklarnas means sawdust because of the film and its English-language title. It works (at least partially) by comparing documents that are available in more than one language, and automatically inferring translations from them. Whenever the documents contain non-literal translations (as so often with titles), hilarity may ensue. Gycklare is not a very common word anymore, so I wouldn't be surprised if most web pages that contain the word gycklarnas are about the film.


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 Post subject: Re: BD 95 I clowns
PostPosted: Wed Aug 20, 2014 7:26 am 
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Thanks for clearing that up. How would you render the full title in English? Is the use of the term Carny justified at all (does Gycklare have other connotations?)?


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 Post subject: Re: BD 95 I clowns
PostPosted: Wed Aug 20, 2014 2:34 pm 
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EddieLarkin wrote:
How would you render the full title in English? Is the use of the term Carny justified at all (does Gycklare have other connotations?)?
Well, it's really hard to translate anything into a language that's not your first one, and besides I'm not too familiar with the word carny. I'd say the literal translation would be The Evening of the Jesters. The word gycklare can be used derogatorily to refer to the whole circus troupe, not just the clown(s), and that's probably the case here. If carny is not too modern then it's not a bad translation at all, though it loses the resonance with the corresponding verb, gyckla, which can mean "to ridicule (someone/something)". The title itself implies that those good-for-nothings who spend their days making fun of us hardworking decent people will nevertheless, somehow, have their evening. Afton carries all sorts of poetic associations about things coming to an end, as I'm sure evening does, but maybe twilight does that even better.


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 Post subject: Re: BD 95 I clowns
PostPosted: Wed Aug 20, 2014 2:46 pm 
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Certainly twilight denotes an ending more than evening does yes, so I'd say that's a better fit if afton carries similar connotations. Carny is a slang term for a person who works at a carnival or fair, as opposed to a circus, and is definitely not something that is used interchangeably with clown or jester. It typically carries a negative connotation; for me a carny is a shady type who runs a crooked game of chance at a carnival. But that's probably just because of that one Simpsons episode.


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PostPosted: Wed Aug 20, 2014 5:22 pm 
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MoC wrote:
Right on the heels of the riotous Go to Hell, Bastards: Detective Bureau 2 3, Seijun Suzuki unleashed what would come to be seen as his true breakthrough, the film that would cement "the Suzuki sensibility": Youth of the Beast [Yajû no seishun]. A kaleidoscopic fantasia that contains "youth" and "beast" onlly insofar as 1963 pop/youth culture was that violently upstart thing, not unlike the yakuza?

And so Youth of the Beast is a yakuza tale with a premise like Akira Kurosawa's Yôjinbô, but denuded of an easy definition of which side is which. It stars Suzuki's iconic '60s regular Jô Shishido, with his dare-you-to-call-them-out artificial cheek implants like new acting blasphemy. There are drug-addled whores, gunfights in a new colour apocalypse, and at least one alien landscape — the sudden mind-searing eruption of a sulphur yellow desert like an action-figure playset with overspill of unbridled lust.

Suzuki's infectious go-for-broke energy is assisted by a telephoto lens that serves at once phallus and yoni in the masterful, Minnelli-worthy 'Scope framing. His film would go on to inspire John Woo's forthcoming remake titled Day of the Beast; Nikkatsu have in recent times deemed this one of their treasures. The Masters of Cinema Series is proud to present Youth of the Beast in a Dual Format (Blu-ray + DVD) edition based on their new HD master.

Whaaat? That easily beats anything in the I Clowns description. Are they actually going to print this?


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PostPosted: Wed Aug 20, 2014 5:27 pm 
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God, I didn't even read the description
Quote:
A kaleidoscopic fantasia that contains "youth" and "beast" onlly insofar as 1963 pop/youth culture was that violently upstart thing, not unlike the yakuza?

What the actual fuck is this

MOC, I am an English teacher. I will red flag stuff like this for you for free (Actual offer)

EDIT: There's not a single line I'd keep in as-is. Holy cat, what happened here?


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PostPosted: Wed Aug 20, 2014 5:33 pm 
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With this one, they've officially become the swimminghorses of back-cover descriptions.


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PostPosted: Wed Aug 20, 2014 5:35 pm 
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I don't know, swimminghorses at least had a logical consistency to his work even if it was insane. This is just gibberish.


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PostPosted: Wed Aug 20, 2014 5:36 pm 
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In retrospect, hiring Tommy Wiseau as their press writer was perhaps a bad idea.


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