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PostPosted: Thu Sep 15, 2005 3:04 pm 
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Says I the sane guy.

Try typing skinhead into Google image search.

"Skinhead" is the preffered look of the young (European) neo-nazi whether or not that offends your sense of musical history.


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PostPosted: Thu Sep 15, 2005 4:19 pm 
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Gordon McMurphy wrote:
Close Encounters of the Third Kind (1977)
A film that has fallen out of favour with me in recent years, but still
has significant charm and cinematic power. Again, John William is on
hand to elevate many scenes. Dreyfuss, coked up and a bit crazy, is
great to watch. Amazing special effects and cinematography. But, it
has a very flabby and disjointed narrative, especially in the DVD cut.

I think that the longer cut works better on DVD. You have time to immerse yourself in the film and its world and can do it in the comfort of your home without any of the distractions of seeing it in a theater. I also like how it goes against the prevalent trend of the "aliens are out to get us!" that you see a lot in Hollywood films (Contact being a notable exeception -- of course, look at how well it did at the box office). I find it interesting that Spielberg has gone on to make War of the Worlds which is the antithesis to Close Encounters.

I always found the opening scene where the scientists find the missing WW2 planes to be such an intriguing way to start a movie. And one my favorite scenes in any Spielberg scenes are those shots of the little kid chasing after the UFOs out in the middle of nowhere, America.


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PostPosted: Thu Sep 15, 2005 4:51 pm 
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I'm also glad that the DVD returned the ending of not showing the inside of the spaceship and relegating it to a Deleted Scenes feature. When the "new edition" of CE3K came out in the theaters, I remember being very disappointed with the dull scenes showing the insides which destroyed so much of the magic and awe that Spielberg achieved up to that point.


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PostPosted: Fri Sep 16, 2005 3:16 am 
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Gordon McMurphy wrote:
Most of SS's 80s films were not as you say "Star Vehicles", but they still featured big 'name' actors.

Such as? And I mean at the time, and from his start to the mid-80's or even up until he got Hanks/Cruise fever. It's not like he has Joe Lunchbucket starring in his movies, but besides Belushi, whose name was exactly lighting up the marquee? The sales pitches are the special effects/creatures and/or Spielberg himself, not the actors. I don't recall hearing a lot of "Ooh, I can't wait to see Jeff Goldblum in that movie with the dinosaurs!"


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PostPosted: Fri Sep 16, 2005 9:34 am 
Big fan of the former president
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ben d banana wrote:
Gordon McMurphy wrote:
Most of SS's 80s films were not as you say "Star Vehicles", but they still featured big 'name' actors.

Such as? And I mean at the time, and from his start to the mid-80's or even up until he got Hanks/Cruise fever. It's not like he has Joe Lunchbucket starring in his movies, but besides Belushi, whose name was exactly lighting up the marquee? The sales pitches are the special effects/creatures and/or Spielberg himself, not the actors. I don't recall hearing a lot of "Ooh, I can't wait to see Jeff Goldblum in that movie with the dinosaurs!"

Well, Harrison Ford was a pretty big deal by the time he did Raiders. Star Wars had become a HUGE cultural phenomenon by that point... and certainly by the time of Temple of Doom, Ford was an even bigger name.


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PostPosted: Sat Sep 17, 2005 8:30 pm 
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Of course Star Wars was hugely popular and he was an important co-star (and I imagine many people's favorite), but Raiders was his (big time) starring debut and made him a name, which obviously led to the sequels and his involvement. Still, being a cast member of Star Wars was hardly a guarantee of success... *cough*Corvette Summer*cough*.


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PostPosted: Fri Jun 22, 2007 1:25 am 
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I've come to consider Spielberg to have a peculiar reputation of being both underrated and overrated director. He's overrated in a sense of his success and the general populace who worship him as one of the greatest directors ever. Underrated in a sense that some of his films (most notably his failures) are too quickly dismissed by film enthusiasts and scholars. I think he is a more complex filmmaker than some film aficionados give him credit for and sometimes his popularity and success often come as a bias against him.

Anyone else feel this way about him?


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PostPosted: Fri Jun 22, 2007 2:44 am 
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Not really. I think he's dismissed for a reason, namely that he's an idiot. He may be competent at what he does, and in a few cases exceptional, but so is AIDS.


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PostPosted: Fri Jun 22, 2007 3:12 am 

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Robotron wrote:
Not really. I think he's dismissed for a reason, namely that he's an idiot.

Call him a hack if you like, but he's absolutely no idiot.

Quote:
He may be competent at what he does, and in a few cases exceptional, but so is AIDS.

AIDS gags are BRILLIANT. Especially when they don't make any sense.


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PostPosted: Fri Jun 22, 2007 3:21 am 
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I wasn't going particularly in-depth in my slander, I'll willingly admit, and the AIDS remark is beyond cliche, but I don't see the point in expending much thought on the man, because there simply is nothing there. He is interested in nothing but the mechanics of manipulation, without the innovation and skill of Hitchcock, and beyond his penchant for bright lights and loud noises that would later inspire the likes of Michael Bay, he hasn't contributed in the slightest to a meaningful discussion of what film ought to be.


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PostPosted: Fri Jun 22, 2007 6:47 am 
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Robotron wrote:
Not really. I think he's dismissed for a reason, namely that he's an idiot. He may be competent at what he does, and in a few cases exceptional, but so is AIDS.

I wouldn't say he's an idiot,because obviously you don't get all that power if you aren't cunning at least a little bit..Nor I would compare him with Aids,but I agree that he's just merely a competent director.
He resembles some of the old hollywood directors for hire (someone like Victor Fleming) who just didn't have enough artistic flair.
Of course when you have all the most important scripts delivered to you and money is never an issue it's easier to produce a good film from time to time.
But still,I find it hard to define a "Spielberg" style,except the reiterate stress about the importance of family (which is always shoved down our throats) and some spectacular chases.
Definitely one of the best producers in the history of cinema,but starting from "The color purple" I just stopped caring about him.


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PostPosted: Fri Jun 22, 2007 7:12 am 
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I think people should give A.I. Artificial Intelligence a second look. It's one of his more complex works. It shouldn't be dismissed so quickly.


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PostPosted: Fri Jun 22, 2007 7:16 am 
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malcolm1980 wrote:
I think people should give A.I. Artificial Intelligence a second look. It's one of his more complex works. It shouldn't be dismissed so quickly.

I have to say I really liked it,and visually it was impressive.I would have liked it more if only it were a bit more subtle,particularly during ending.


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PostPosted: Fri Jun 22, 2007 7:47 am 

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Robotron wrote:
I wasn't going particularly in-depth in my slander, I'll willingly admit, and the AIDS remark is beyond cliche, but I don't see the point in expending much thought on the man, because there simply is nothing there. He is interested in nothing but the mechanics of manipulation, without the innovation and skill of Hitchcock, and beyond his penchant for bright lights and loud noises that would later inspire the likes of Michael Bay, he hasn't contributed in the slightest to a meaningful discussion of what film ought to be.

I have no idea what that last statement even means, but I'll try and address your main argument.

The problem with Spielberg is that his great skills don't really lie in the formal aspects of his movies, which is what most cinephiles seem to use to distinguish a director's artistry. He shoots a lot of coverage and 95% or so of his shots tend to serve a narrative function rather than an aesthetic one. There are plenty of memorable and iconic images in his films, but it's much easier to recall the event it's depicting than the precise image he presents.

What Spielberg at his best does have, and woe betide anyone who underestimates this quality in him or any other director, is an astonishing command of tone and pace. He's also a master at conveying huge amounts about characters and situations through small, offhand details.

There's a lot of his work I don't care for, but to dismiss him out of hand as a shallow trickster is daft. His best movies often look easy enough to imitate but so, so many have tried and failed miserably.


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PostPosted: Fri Jun 22, 2007 9:00 am 

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There's a lot of his work I don't care for, but to dismiss him out of hand as a shallow trickster is daft. His best movies often look easy enough to imitate but so, so many have tried and failed miserably.

Agreed, and while I would never place Spielberg next to Godard, or Hitchcock, or even Scorsese, he's remarkable at what he does - making huge crowd-pleasing films that often are extremely innovative in terms of special effects. No matter how cool the dinosaurs were, I don't think people would have kept going back to see Jurassic Park if they hadn't have felt something other than "oh, that's really cool" (do you think people kept seeing Titanic or Pirates of the Caribbean just for the effects?). On the flip side, a film like Jaws (which I think is a pretty perfect little action/adventure film) draws you in to the point that you don't notice that the shark at the end looks 100% ridiculous.

And, sometimes, Spielberg really knocks me for a loop and makes a film like A.I., which I'm still kind of haunted by and rewatch at least once or twice a year in an attempt to further understand it.

I'd usually be apt to describe Spielberg much like LionelHutz said, like a high-quality director for hire, but he has something that people like Michael Bay don't, and I'm not quite sure what it is. A great understanding of what audiences want and need (i.e., he might not have as many crazy stunts as a Bay film, but his films generally connect emotionally)? A sense of wonder and innocence that's missing from most big-budget blockbusters nowadays? A true love of movies?


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PostPosted: Fri Jun 22, 2007 9:15 am 

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He knows (and, I've no doubt, feels himself) that people really want to see idealised and more exciting versions of their own lives when they go to the movies. His best films (essentially all of his early ones) are based around standard lives being hurled into turmoil by external forces (even Indiana Jones is a college professor). I don't think it was created from a cynical box-office-formula standpoint but it's been taken and used like that extensively since which is often unfortunate but I don't see the sense in blaming Spielberg personally for this.


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PostPosted: Fri Jun 22, 2007 10:38 am 
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Narshty wrote:
The problem with Spielberg is that his great skills don't really lie in the formal aspects of his movies, which is what most cinephiles seem to use to distinguish a director's artistry. He shoots a lot of coverage and 95% or so of his shots tend to serve a narrative function rather than an aesthetic one. There are plenty of memorable and iconic images in his films, but it's much easier to recall the event it's depicting than the precise image he presents.

This is about the most interesting thing I've heard someone say about Spielberg on this forum, although that says as much about the low quality of opinions on the man than anything.

However, I must take issue with a couple of assumptions, namely about what constitutes "aesthetic" and "narrative" in your use. You distinguish between the two, saying that most of Spielberg's shots have a "narrative" rather than "aesthetic" function. I can only take this to mean--and perhaps this is less your view than an appropriation of a common view to aid your argument--that by "aesthetic" you mean beauty, or rather the sentimentalized form most call beauty (big sunsets, lush flowers, lusher colours, exaggerated silhouettes, ect.). In which case the implication is that there are chiefly two methods of shooting: a deliberate attempt to make pretty pictures aka. the artistic method, and the tell-a-good-story aka. the classical hollywood method. I don't believe this is so.

You then go on to say:

narshty wrote:
What Spielberg at his best does have, and woe betide anyone who underestimates this quality in him or any other director, is an astonishing command of tone and pace. He's also a master at conveying huge amounts about characters and situations through small, offhand details.

This is absolutely right. However, I would say, with no hesitation, that tone, pace, and the kind of visual force you imply at the end, are purely aesthetic and are no less capable of beauty. It is perhaps a category of "beauty" or aesthetics that most are unfamiliar with since it does not entail obvious attempts at artistry. Narrative is not somehow alienated from aesthetic or formal consideration; on the contrary, narrative is I would say a purely aesthetic category since to observe it requires one to observe exactly what the director is doing at the visual level (or more largely, what the film is doing on the formal level). And constructing excellent narratives certainly requires artistry and certainly should be applauded rather than sneered at as mere populist pap. It is true that empty films attempt to cover their lack of significance with an emphasis on narrative, the latter inducing passive reactions. But the aesthetic (or beautiful) and narrative are not separate categories, one high-brow and artistic, the other populist and hacky (or the former pretentious, the latter pure quicksilver). This seems to be the popular view of things, and one which I cannot abide.

The presence of a strong narrative focus should never preclude the presence of genuine artistic significance. And Narshty is right to remove focus, in the case of Spielberg, from the consideration of isolated images in favour of the consideration of tone, texture, and rhythm--categories more purely poetic than the former. Most of us would consider Dario Argento a more purely 'artistic' director than Spielberg; and yet Argento's best films (much as I love many of them) are often marred by poor pacing and inconsistent tones, faults Spielberg readily avoids. Which is to say, although Argento appears more artistic, he fails to achieve certain points of artistry at which Spielberg succeeds. This is not mere technicality on either's part, either, but the presence of two forms of artistry, neither of which are less considerable then the other.

If, on the other hand, Argento's films cut more deeply for me than Spielberg's, it is because I often dislike Spielberg's sensibility, which I think is his largest and most crippling flaw (as opposed to being a mere technician, as some have claimed). His formal approach is always artistic; his choice of approach is, however, often ill-considered or plain wrong for the material.


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PostPosted: Fri Jun 22, 2007 10:50 am 

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While Spielberg may be responsible for changing the marketing strategies of Hollywood a' la the big budget Summer blockbuster it is impossible to deny that he possesses a creative vision of the world, which is unlike other directors of his ilk such as Lucas, Tarantino or even the dreadful Michael Bay.

I have noticed that many fellow cinephiles fail to see that Spielberg is in fact a visionary director and without a doubt he is one of the greatest technical directors of all time, equaling the likes of Hitchcock, Welles, Curtiz and Ford. For many years Spielberg has been disregarded as nothing more than a conservative, juvenile director but if one looks closely at his work, there is nothing conservative nor juvenile about it. For example in Jurassic Park he makes fun of the big budget ancillary driven merchandise that fuels the coffers of the studios when he includes the scene of Hammond and the children in the island gift shop which is populated by the very things we "real" people could purchase if we so desire. Thus he includes a level of irony to the film which is of course a fantasy film and yet within that level of fantasy he is able to provide an experience of real pathos and "truth" for the characters and the viewer.

And let us not forget about his 9/11 trilogy The Terminal, War of the Worlds and Munich. In each of these films he addresses the current state of the world whether it be the dislocation of space via the airport terminal, the danger of religion and a mob incited by violence and terror to act irrationally or a world where the US has convienently forgotten their historical role in creating the arena for the present crisis between islamic fascism and American fascism.

In regards to academics/scholars ignoring Spielberg this is now not as much of an issue. In this year alone, there have been three books published about him by scholarly presses: Citizen Spielberg by Lester Friedman, Empire of Light: The Cinema of Steven Spielberg by Nigel Morris (for those who are interested in Spielberg I highly recommend this book because Morris connects Spielberg's shot selections and image choices to his admiration for films like Citizen Kane, The Searchers etc.) and Directed by Steven Spielberg:Poetics of the Contemporary Blockbuster by Warren Buckland.

Morris argues that his style is defined by three things. First is "Spielberg's distinctive lighting code; diffused images-- strongly backlit and countered with a weak fill light." (6) Second, his films contain many instances of shafts of light, recreating the experience of a motion picture projector beam, thus allowing for numerous metaphors visually of cameras, screens, projectors, audiences and cinema as an institution. One great example of this is in Close Encounters of the Third Kind where he uses the radar screen of an air traffic controller as a device for an edit, in particular that of the classical Hollywood wipe. Finally Morris argues that the other element which defines his films is that of pastiche or quotation from other films. In addition to these insights I would add that in every Spielberg film there is a toy or a mention of a toy as well as the depiction of a broken family or family in crisis. For myself, coming from a background where I watched my own family disintegrate before my young eyes because of my parents, I would argue that Spielberg captures the angst and sheer terror which children go through in divorce situations in a extremely realistic fashion. What Spielberg seems to understand is that the most terrifying thing and the event that strikes home the most often is in fact the destruction of the American family, not buildings.

So, while some deride Spielberg for being a commercial director what is important to note is that even as a commercial director he still makes films which challenge expectations and offer multiple levels of enjoyment and intellecual interest.


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PostPosted: Fri Jun 22, 2007 11:12 am 
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For those that are interested (and haven't already seen the promo 100 times), TCM will be showing Richard Schickel's new documentary Spielberg on Spielberg on Monday, July 9.


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PostPosted: Fri Jun 22, 2007 11:41 am 
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Narshty wrote:
The problem with Spielberg is that his great skills don't really lie in the formal aspects of his movies, which is what most cinephiles seem to use to distinguish a director's artistry. He shoots a lot of coverage and 95% or so of his shots tend to serve a narrative function rather than an aesthetic one. There are plenty of memorable and iconic images in his films, but it's much easier to recall the event it's depicting than the precise image he presents.

That is very interesting. I have problems with Spielberg but at the same time like many of his films and agree with Narshty that they all have something that his many imitators lack. I'd like to pick up on Narshty's point. I sometimes get the feeling that Spielberg is aware of these kind of 'event having primacy over the image' situations and the times that I have the most problems with his work is when he seems to assume that the audience won't remember the context of where they saw something before but just that something similar occured earlier - for example the flashback from the older man to Tom Hanks at the beginning of Saving Private Ryan which at the end turns out to have been the reminisence of Matt Damon's character, who was parachuted into France before D-Day so couldn't have been able to reminisce about Hank's experiences! But I think we aren't supposed to remember that by the end - the opening transition was casually used for its powerful properties of audience identification to place us more viscerally in the action of the opening sequence without apologies for the misrepresentation. That almost ruins the film for me when thinking back over it though.

I'd also recommend A.I. - I don't really like the middle sequences with Gigolo Joe that perhaps would have been better served with a Kubrick detachment rather than populating the world with 'quirky' characters everywhere, but the opening and everything from the meeting with William Hurt through the final future scenes is beautifully done and probably the most appropriate use of sentimentality in a Spielberg film so far!

It could also be the film where Spielberg examines the use of sentimentality in his work, perhaps something that Kubrick considered he might do when he suggested that Spielberg was the best director for the piece?

Rather than the waves of nausea I usually end up feeling watching sentimental films when we are shown information about characters to make us care about them (the suggestion being that we didn't care about them before and wouldn't after if we aren't told they have a wife and child and a dog back home that show they somehow are more decent than someone who doesn't have those things), A.I. complicates that by having the robot boy driven by impulses he didn't ask for - by a longing for a return to a time he could never go back to and a love he never really received even when he was in the care of his 'parents'.

There is the strange pull I felt throughout the film in responding to this in 'human' terms - i.e. treating the robot boy as a real boy and feeling the horror of being abandoned and the desperate search for parents - and at the same time knowing that he is a created artifact rather than a human being and wondering about how much he is 'feeling' the emotion or just replicating on the surface the physical sign of that emotion (it also adds to the shock of the boy's angry reaction to being confronted by rows of robot dopplegangers in his creator's office and subsequent seeming suicide attempt - are these the actions of something replicating emotion? Would pain and self awareness have been programmed in, or does it suggest David actually is growing through his interactions with the world and the knowledge that they have made him a different entity from the David fresh out of his box - that David could never be the robot David we know as he would never know the family who had abandoned him, just as the robot David could never have taken the place of the real son of the family? Does it also suggest a kind of autism in not being able to appreciate that the other David has had their own different and unique experiences without him, instead just reacting angrily and smashing his perceived opponent for his mother's attention to bits?)

It seems like it is also playing with ideas of empathy, both in the way an audience identifies with the characters in a film, and especially the main character, and in more general terms. After all how do we know that the things we experience are experienced by others in the same way? Perhaps attachments to animals, robots (and teddy bears!) are the ultimate expression of projecting our feelings onto others to show respect to the things that surround us.

The wondering that brings of how much the desperate search caused by his owner stupidly 'imprinting' him (to serve her own short-term, but horribly understandable, longings) is a mechanical response replicating the emotions of a child wanting its mother creates a fascinating push and pull on my emotions which seemed to keep the sentimentality from feeling too cloying and to work on a deeper level than just manipulation on me. It seemed to focus me on my reactions to the sentimentalism, for example in the early section where the parents are getting tired of the robot but they can't seem to realise that there is some fundamental rule programmed into him to keep him acting as a child and unable to grow up and be less needy, as that would violate the entire purpose of his existence.

It makes that idealised recreation of a past and a relationship that never existed (which has to be recreated with a version of the mother whose one day resurrection seems to have left her slightly drugged in her awareness - unaware of anything but the house and the robot boy to keep her focus on him!) almost unbearably heartrending.

Knowing that I'll never know how deeply David felt those emotions, or even whether the final limited reconcilliation with his 'mother' ever gave him peace just adds to that. This is perhaps an example of ending the movie at a particular spot to add to the emotion rather than to reach a logical end - does David die once he's fulfilled his longing? Real people don't, so if he does is that some proof that he fundamentally wasn't human and therefore might not have been feeling the same things as we the audience were feeling throughout the film? Or does he continue and, if so, exactly how does he continue while he is still programmed to be a child who needs the love and protection of his mother? He had numerous moments with his mother earlier in the film where she connected with him deeply, but that didn't prevent his loss and need being less when she abandoned him. That unchanging inevitability of an ageless child never able to grow up and move on runs throughout the film, only more deeply reinforced by the jump to a time far in the future when even a slight possibility of re-encountering the real mother is long gone.

In a way it makes the narrative completely pointless, as there is no solution to the quest David is on. The journey is a kind of McGuffin while the real focus seems squarely on the viewer him or herself and their reactions to David's plight. It makes the film a sort of mirror so the viewer can project their own reactions of their love and need for their parents or those times when they might have felt abandoned, even if it was only for a moment. The big difference is that the audience has been forced to 'get over' these issues or push them to the back of their minds simply due to growing up and having to face other problems in their lives, to take on adult responsibilities. David cannot and is always bringing his need and loss back up - he's kind of like a robotic version of Spielberg's films, bringing up issues of childhoods stunted by traumatic events and having to go over the wreckage again and again to find the point where it went wrong, as if understanding it could somehow fix it - attempting to find a solution to an unfixable problem.

I haven't read the Aldiss story on which the film was based, but I think all these difficult issues raise A.I. to level of a writer like Asimov's works, although I sometimes wish that the middle section was filmed by someone as 'cold' as Kubrick, who could have made the world more threatening in a bleak rather than cartoony sense, which would have pointed up even more that David's need for his mother was the only recognisably 'human' emotion left in a world populated by robots replicating various aspects of human behaviours at that point.


Last edited by colinr0380 on Sat Jun 23, 2007 11:56 am, edited 26 times in total.

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PostPosted: Fri Jun 22, 2007 11:50 am 
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colinr0380 wrote:
I sometimes get the feeling that Spielberg is aware of this kind of 'event having primacy over the image' situations and the times that I have the most problems with his work is when he seems to assume that the audience won't remember the context of where they saw something before but just that something similar occured earlier - for example the flashback from the older man to Tom Hanks at the beginning of Saving Private Ryan which at the end turns out to have been the reminisence of Matt Damon's character, who was parachuted into France before D-Day so couldn't have been able to reminisce about Hank's experiences!

This bothers me to no end as well! For all the saccharine endings Spielberg has given us, the Ryan bookends are the worst moments I can think of in any of his films. They're completely unnecessary to boot as the film works much better without them.


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PostPosted: Fri Jun 22, 2007 12:32 pm 
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Narshty wrote:
I have no idea what that last statement even means, but I'll try and address your main argument.

What I mean is that there is a difference between filmmakers who innovate aesthetically or narratively and those who merely competently make constructions out of previous innovations, and I've seen no evidence that pulls Spielberg out of the latter, which I think make comparisons to Welles a defilement of the man.

Narshty wrote:
The problem with Spielberg is that his great skills don't really lie in the formal aspects of his movies, which is what most cinephiles seem to use to distinguish a director's artistry. He shoots a lot of coverage and 95% or so of his shots tend to serve a narrative function rather than an aesthetic one. There are plenty of memorable and iconic images in his films, but it's much easier to recall the event it's depicting than the precise image he presents.

That's hardly exclusive to Spielberg. For me, it doesn't matter though, because most of his narratives (I'm willing to make some exceptions for Close Encounters and Duel) are so trite, and often ruined by his absolutely terrible dialogue, anyway.

Narshty wrote:
What Spielberg at his best does have, and woe betide anyone who underestimates this quality in him or any other director, is an astonishing command of tone and pace. He's also a master at conveying huge amounts about characters and situations through small, offhand details.

As Mr_sausage already noted, tone and pace are both cinematic aesthetics.

I will agree, that he had these skills previously, but ever since the mid eighties they have entirely dissipated for me. Whether this was a case of him losing his talent or simply an inability to create any tone that wasn't wonder or excitement, I'll never know. But his "adult" movies strike me as absolutely terrible. Spielberg is the most didactic ambiguous director I've ever seen.

Narshty wrote:
There's a lot of his work I don't care for, but to dismiss him out of hand as a shallow trickster is daft. His best movies often look easy enough to imitate but so, so many have tried and failed miserably.

Really? He has at least two successful protoges I can think of off the top of my head, Ron Howard and Robert Zemeckis, and at least one director, Joe Dante, who, in my humble opinion, does Spielberg better than Spielberg.


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PostPosted: Fri Jun 22, 2007 2:21 pm 

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Mr Sausage is entirely correct in saying that tone and pace are aesthetic considerations, and of course they are, but strike me more as controlling the 'substance' of the film rather than the 'style' in terms of what is immediately distinctive and pleasing to the eye and ear (and also more directly imitable). I suspect we're quibbling over definitions, and mine was an oversimplified and slightly muddled way of saying "You wouldn't want to hang every frame on the wall, unlike some filmmakers, but I don't think that's his thing anyway".

I wouldn't say Joe Dante outdoes Spielberg at his game - Dante strikes me a vastly more subversive and radical filmmaker (1941's knockabout zaniness cannot hold a candle to the wit and all-out lunacy of Gremlins 2, for example), and has a far firmer grasp of irony and a much darker streak than Spielberg ever possessed (and, yes, I prefer Piranha to Jaws - would Spielberg ever have allowed so many kids to be mauled and killed?). They're very different filmmakers indeed.


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PostPosted: Sat Jun 23, 2007 2:00 pm 
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Joined: Mon Jun 27, 2005 3:31 pm
Location: Indiana
A documentary about the man, hosted by Mark Kermode.


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PostPosted: Sun Jun 24, 2007 12:19 am 
~_~
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flyonthewall2983 wrote:

God bless youtube, and the people at Google who bought it... Any more of these, just keep them coming...


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