It is currently Mon Nov 20, 2017 5:36 am

All times are UTC - 5 hours [ DST ]




Post new topic Reply to topic  [ 26 posts ]  Go to page 1, 2  Next
Author Message
 Post subject:
PostPosted: Fri Oct 12, 2007 3:38 am 
User avatar

Joined: Thu Feb 23, 2006 8:19 pm
Location: Vancouver, BC, Canada
DELIVERANCE-derivative or not, I think this is a fine, understated horror film with nicely subtle subtextual stuff thrown in about guilt and conscience, a strangely iconic ending, and compelling performances. (Stephen King, in DANSE MACABRE, is famously a champion of the film, as is Canadian horror critic Caelum Vatnsdal). About a group of doctors who are stalked on a camping trip by an unknown killer with a grudge against the medical profession.

I'm wondering if anyone has seen the North American DVD release (via Synergy) yet? It just came out a few weeks ago... Is it the same as the German version distrib'd last year under its alternate title? What are the colours like? What's the runtime...? There were a few mutilated cuts out there - the proper version has an thematically significant conversation between Holbrook and Lawrence Dane (abbreviated in the US VHS release), before it cuts to the "penis extension surgery" argument - which should end in the line, "What man wouldn't pay for a bigger dick?," but again, doesn't in the crappy pan-and-scan VHS. The print I saw on film last year at the Vancouver International Film Center was pretty pink, but more or less complete, and it had some surprisingly nice compositions, given how much criticism it's received. More on that here (my blog).

A.


Top
 Profile  
 

 Post subject:
PostPosted: Fri Oct 19, 2007 4:05 am 
User avatar

Joined: Thu Feb 23, 2006 8:19 pm
Location: Vancouver, BC, Canada
So 106 people have looked in on it thus without havin' ANYTHIN' to say?

Does anyone at least know this label, Synergy? Anyone familiar with the quality of their past releases?

I've emailed them, but to no avail as yet.

P.


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sun Oct 21, 2007 10:43 am 
User avatar

Joined: Sat May 19, 2007 3:00 pm
I saw it a few months back via the Dutch DVD. It's a creepy, fairly stylish film, but the direction and editing are clumsy. Good stock of actors, especially Hal Holbrook. The scene where they find their buddy in the chair is insane. I might have like it more had the transfer been from a good source and had been anamorphic. From what I hear, the R1 edition is the cut version, running 89 minutes from the original 100 minutes.


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sun Nov 04, 2007 9:38 pm 
User avatar

Joined: Thu Feb 23, 2006 8:19 pm
Location: Vancouver, BC, Canada
Yep, the Synergy version is hacked up - Videomatica brought it in and I previewed it. It's 90 minutes, and aside from a scratchy-as-all-hell title sequence (The Creeper) taken from a different print of the film, is full frame, with blurry, dark images. Chops aren't to the gore, as some people seem to think, but to scenes that establish character and theme - the beginning of the film in particular has a rushed, awkward feeling to it. It never quite recovers. If you're curious, it will give you a taste of the film - but the real meal remains unreleased here on DVD.

P.


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Oct 14, 2008 10:53 am 
User avatar

Joined: Thu Nov 04, 2004 8:31 am
I just noticed in the Beaver review of Code Red's Sweet Sixteen that the disc has a trailer for Rituals. Sounds like potential good news.


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Oct 14, 2008 4:27 pm 
Big fan of the former president
User avatar

Joined: Tue Nov 02, 2004 3:54 pm
Location: Provo, Utah
Supposedly, this is the uncut version.


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sun Oct 19, 2008 11:46 am 
User avatar

Joined: Thu Feb 23, 2006 8:19 pm
Location: Vancouver, BC, Canada
I've got to assume that there will eventually be a proper R1 release of this film - the version in that review does not sound at all tempting (tho' I've been priviliged to see the film twice theatrically in the full cut in the last few years, so I'm in no hurry to look at it again).

The thing that makes RITUALS not just a cash-in is that there is no emphasis on the suppression of homosexuality as part of a rite-of-passage into manhood and phallic potency, which seems to be part of DELIVERANCE's theme. It's more obvious in the novel, but visible in the movie, too, that the Jon Voight character, Ed, is attracted to the Burt Reynolds character, Lewis, with his rugged masculinity, charismatic aura, and his confident outdoorsmanship; in an early camping scene, with Ed drunk, there's a desire-charged, idealizing look from Ed to Lewis that makes this fairly clear. In order to survive his ordeal and repress his homosexual tendencies, Ed has to witness a horrifying rape, participate in "burying" evidence of it, and, when Lewis is injured, take his place and master the (penetrative) bow and arrow that he can barely shoot at the beginning... Afterwards, we witness the constant cost to the "normally repressed male" of the evidence of his homosexual desires arising later on (the pale hand floating up to the surface). Try watching the film in these terms some time - despite elements of the urban/rural horror film, I'm convinced it's best viewed as a sort of homophobic parable.

There's none of that in RITUALS. (Thematic spoilers follow). The subtext here is more pure distillation of elements of the urban/rural genre - which, as Carol J. Clover suggests in MEN, WOMEN AND CHAINSAWS, generally involves the upper classes being put in a position, through the necessities of survival, of being licensed or even compelled to justifably kill the poor, to remove traces of "guilt-inducing" class difference, asserting in us-versus-them terms our right to life... What must be overcome along the way is any compassion or responsibility one feels. (Plot spoilers follow). The "ritual" that the Hal Holbrook character must undergo tracks an arc defined in almost entirely moral terms: at the beginning of the film - in the proper version - he's criticized by a fellow doctor for being too compassionate, too concerned with the poor and suffering, to the detriment of his career. His ordeal is to have to drag one of his wounded friends with him through a desert while sun beats on them - a visual symbol of the "weight" of compassion; and to witness his other friends killed horribly by a victim of medical malpractice. The climactic confrontation at the cabin with the disfigured killer is crucial - there's the bizarre suggestion of a passage of SOMETHING from the killer to Holbrook, in the form of dogtags, and the transformation of Holbrook into someone who can overcome his compassion when need be (through, as usual, blowing away the poor). The film is particularly interesting in that the Moses-like shots of a transformed Holbrook at the end, walking out of the wilderness a changed man, encourage the viewer to look at all the above in symbolic terms (as does the title - there are no obvious rituals in the film otherwise, which sets you up to wonder what the hell they're talking about). Someone actually appears to have thought out the implications of their story and crafted it to highlight these archetypal/rite-of-passage elements, which is what makes RITUALS singularly interesting, and deserving of more credit than it generally receives.

One reason to avoid cut versions of the film is that the crucial beginning arguments between Holbrook and Lawrence Dane about the cost of compassion are generally abbreviated. The alternate title THE CREEPER is also obviously a great injustice to the film, too. One reason to avoid the European version, based on the previous review, is that the audio sounds pretty bad; there are passages - when floating their injured colleague (Robin Gammell, whose character, in perhaps a red-herring poke at DELIVERANCE, is gay) up the river - where it is very hard to make out what is being said, over the sound of the rushing water. Some of it is thematically relevant, as I recall, but in every version I've seen you have to strain to catch it. Here's hoping when this sees a release, someone will do a good job cleaning up the sound.

It's a really good film for people who like thinking about horror movies.

P.


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Tue Jul 14, 2009 11:19 pm 

Joined: Tue Jul 14, 2009 10:16 pm
I really wish this would get a good dvd release.
I heard the company that owns the rights just doesnt care about it enough to release it properly.

This is my favorite "Canadian" movie. Its hard to find an English Canadian genre movie that is 100 percent Canadian(as in Canadian born writer/director and actors) that isnt a quirky comedy or off the mainstream (Cronenberg horror for example--a little too visceral to be mainstream horror).
I believe Rituals' director is British and the star obviously isnt Canadian(not sure about Ian Sutherland but I will assume he is from Canada).
There's something I find very compelling about this movie. A fascinating film for something so low budget and obscure.

It has interesting exchanges between the characters. When I saw Deliverance, I was disappointed how unlike it was to Rituals, which I had heard of(and maybe seen in a drive in as a kid).

The use of the wilderness is fantastic. Very creepy and alienish.


Havent read Men, Women and Chainsaws-interesting theory. I look at the story as a variation on Frankenstein--mad science etc.

Spoilers below



You have 5 characters who have different reasons for being bad doctors...and someone who was a product of bad medicine decides to get revenge.


I dont think the story is about Harry learning to suspend compassion to survive-and blowing away the poor. It has more layers than that. There is an exchange where Dane's character Mitzi criticizes him for doing anything to save someone's life, even if they are "90 percent plumbing and 10 percent human." Harry does all he can to keep a colleague alive (though later he decides to perform euthanasia on someone).

Marty mentions "rituals" to Mitzi at one point.

Near the end Harry has to choose between stopping himself from bleeding to death and saving a colleague. His choice doesnt leave him happy.

I dont think at the end he has come away validating his class at all. He has been punished along with the rest of them. Its the sequence with them all dancing around the camp fire singing "put him back together again" that demonstrates their sin(especially with the killer watching).

Abel was dumb-indifferent-couldnt even remember his kids' names. His death was the easiest.

Marty let personal issues interfere with his medical career and he abandons surgery to take an easy office job. It may have not been anti-gay but he really was put through an ordeal in the movie.

Mitzi was more interested in glory-and he went out in a blaze of glory.

DJ was interested in selling unnecessary surgeries and perhaps the most callous of them all. His fate was tortuous.


Harry abandoned his father(mentioned a few times), felt guilty for it-and perhaps that was part of his reason for talking so much about compassion. He was contemplating following in Marty's footsteps and taking an easy office job. I figure his compassion was not entirely sincere in the beginning--at heart he was probably a good doctor(thus his survival), but his motives were guilt-driven.

I wont say its a perfect movie-but it has more stuff under the hood than you would expect, as well as some great visuals(like the killer's silhouette in the distance).


BTW-I think even the rambling story that Marty tells about teaching a chimp to salute might be relevant to the situation--if i heard it correctly, it involved breaking the legs of a dog to intimidate the chimp. In this case Harry is the chimp and his friends are the dog legs.

There's also a reference early on to Yeats (maybe a little heavy handed after repeated viewings but you dont expect that sort of thing in a rural horror B movie).


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Sun Sep 13, 2009 11:42 am 
User avatar

Joined: Thu Feb 23, 2006 8:19 pm
Location: Vancouver, BC, Canada
Keleg - great post. Thanks in particular for pointing out that the busted leg in Robin Gammell's story is tied in to his character's busted leg, that Harry is the chimp being taught to salute; it's obvious and useful and I didn't really make the connection before now (tho' if I can make an excuse, I don't think I had ever heard the full story properly, before recently picking up the German Kult DVD release - which isn't great picture-wise, but has sound that's good enough that you can actually HEAR his whole story. My previous attempts to see this film, on film and VHS, have usually had muddy audio, with the sound of the water overpowering the story).

And yeah, there's more going on in the film than is accounted for by Clover's formula - it's pretty rich and complex. But that formula DOES cast some light on the film - it's useful, if not complete. The "validation of class" that I spoke of, by the way - it's inseparable from the punishment meted out in such films. That's what makes urban-rural horror films so interesting, when read as films that deal with class: they almost all have -

a) A wealthy group of people that go into the woods, often for entertainment
b) Members among them who are insensitive to the poor - or in Rituals, the medically botched and poor - mocking them, etc (Abel in Rituals, Bobby in Deliverance, the kids who kill the boy in Pumpkinhead... Not sure who in Texas Chainsaw or in The Hills Have Eyes, but there's a certain ugliness to some of the characters, a contempt for the rural denizens they encounter.) There are often other reasons for the poor to be pissed off at them - the "rape of the land" in Deliverance, say, which Clover brings up as paralleling the rape of Bobby; there's some more general reason - connected to the class they represent - that the impoverished people might despise them; they're GUILTY in some way.
c) There are, also, members who are more sensitive to the poor. Of these, one will often be a victim - the "weak link." But there's also one with whom we identify, who is compassionate and virtuous (maybe even excessively so, as Harry is seen as being)... but not weak.
d) But through the action of the movie, that character is subjected to ordeals - seeing his friends killed, having to fight for his life, etc. These serve a double effect - "punishing" the audience, who identify with the character on a class-level, and at the same time frightening them, since the character with whom they identify is increasingly threatened. If that character, too, dies - it's like a guilty verdict on the audience, a validation of "them" in favour of "us." It just don't sell popcorn!
e) Hence the ultimate need of that character to stand up and fight, to proclaim, in effect, that they don't feel compassion for the poor anymore, that when it's ME-VERSUS-THEM they will be as savage as possible to proclaim their right to exist. Their guilt does not extend to their willingness to die. If anyone is going to die, it's going to be the poor (Clover points out that Pumpkinhead is interesting here, because there, the main poor character ends up "switching teams" and killing himself, to save the rich people he's been punishing); and not only will our hero not allow himself to be killed, he will kill others to defend his right to live (Harry ultimately kills Abel, lets Mitzi roast, and kills BOTH brothers - four people, which is actually the same body-count as our deformed killer (tho' the last two Harry kinda helps with).

The suggestion in Clover is that these films induce class guilt, offering a masochistic ordeal with which the audience can punish themselves - but then they ultimately overturn it, reject it, reassuring the audience of their right to exist... I really, really recommend looking at Clover. All of this is explored in the chapter on rape-revenge films, almost as an aside, but it's a very rich way of viewing these sorts of films...

But to end on questions:

What do you think is the meaning of the "passage of the dogtags?"

And given your reading of the film, what does "teaching Harry to salute" entail?

A.


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Mon Sep 14, 2009 6:41 am 
User avatar

Joined: Mon May 08, 2006 6:51 am
Location: Denmark
Someone over at avmaniacs.com just posted this link. Looks like Code Red will be releasing RITUALS.

Image


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Wed Oct 21, 2009 10:48 pm 
User avatar

Joined: Thu Feb 23, 2006 8:19 pm
Location: Vancouver, BC, Canada
Aarrgh! Just when I broke down and bought the German DVD...!

P.


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Thu Oct 29, 2009 12:32 am 

Joined: Tue Jul 14, 2009 10:16 pm
Yes! I hope its a decent version. I have a very poor vhs copy off cable tv--the audio in the water is terrible--took a lot of careful listening to hear what was being said.

About the dog tags--hmm--- I suppose you can say that throughout the movie the killer has been leaving things(medals, x rays, bee hives(which could be symbolic in a Dante sort of way) severed heads) and it is probably part of the pattern--of transferring himself or what he values(you'll notice the killer is a collector--family album, service photos)--giving away pieces of himself? Letting go of his past and his own resentment and anger about what was done to him?

Getting him to salute--- if it were to follow my theory, then I would say he is being forced to face the future and not be making decisions based upon his feelings of failure for abandoning his father. Letting go of the past?

The final shot with him leaving sort of represents a cleansing--he has nothing and sits down on the road which probably has a symbolic meaning in itself---a clear open future?

In a way i would say Harry and Mathew are distortions of each other(if I was going to push the Frankenstein reference).
There's also Jesse--the blind(in Frankenstein the creature visits a blind man). The killer is caring for Jesse ("he hunts good and he provides").


I didnt even think of this when i started typing. lol Maybe its a half baked theory but that's what comes to mind.

Anyway the Clover book sounds fascinating. I used to buy film books but have been negligent in recent years(although I finally picked up a few books--one on Hammer, Harryhausen and Night of the Demon).
Glad I finally checked this forum again. I only posted because Iw as researching links on Rituals.
:)


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Thu Oct 29, 2009 1:19 pm 

Joined: Tue Jul 14, 2009 10:16 pm
Just to clarify--Mathew has been disfigured, and yet he looks after his brother(and possibly holds a lot of hate for outsiders due to what happened to him). Harry is disfigured (inside) from his relationship with his father and his career is one of compassion but its not so sincere(hence he is thinking of giving up like Marty).



I also wonder if the story Harry tells about flying under a bridge fits into this as well.
Both Harry and Mathew the killer were in the military(wasnt he a pilot as well?).

There was a recent screening of it in Toronto with Laurence Dane and Ian Sutherland in attendance-definitely would have been a good opportunity to ask questions!

BTW-I dont discount the class issue is such movies at all-I definitely think there is an aspect of that for the audience, I just think in Rituals case it goes off into different directions despite the formulaic situation.


Dogtags--I think he felt he needed to trade or give something of himself each time he did an act to them. Maybe it was in response to what Harry did to Jesse.

I think ultimately the "rituals" involved exorcising personal demons--both for Harry and Mathew Crowley.


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Wed Nov 18, 2009 1:17 pm 
User avatar

Joined: Mon May 08, 2006 6:51 am
Location: Denmark
pemmican wrote:
Aarrgh! Just when I broke down and bought the German DVD...!


I feel for you, man. I was SO close doing the same, when I found an Italian (!) webshop that still had a copy of the German disc available. I virtually had it in the basket when I stumbled over the news that Code Red would be releasing it. I hope their version will look better than the German DVD, but I fear the elements available will not be in good shape. Well, come December we'll know for sure.


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Fri Nov 20, 2009 10:33 pm 

Joined: Tue Jul 14, 2009 10:16 pm
I read that Lawrence Dane and Robin Gammell are doing audio commentaries for it--should be interesting.

I didnt notice the Danse Macabre comment until now Pemmican.
I remember reading that book and vaguely recall it being mentioned. The only thing I am not sure about is whether I saw it at a drive in as a wee thing.


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Thu Jan 28, 2010 3:09 pm 

Joined: Tue Jul 14, 2009 10:16 pm
It has been delayed to include an interview with Hal Holbrook apparently. And Rue Morgue 96 did an article and cover story on the movie. Havent seen it.

Update:
Well now I am hearing that Code Red dvd has been canceled.
They didnt have the rights.


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Sat May 22, 2010 6:50 am 

Joined: Tue Jul 14, 2009 10:16 pm
I watched it again(had planned not to watch it until the new dvd release but so much for that).
I hadnt noticed that Harry did take the dog tags with him at the end-I thought he had left them on the ground.
(there's also the weird stick that he was carving through the movie--i couldnt make out what it was).

Given the fact that Mathew was a decorated soldier(I believe he was also wearing a uniform)--I think the dog tags represented the most cherished aspect of his former self(after his brother) and he wanted someone to carry the memory of that now that he was going to die.
Also the Keats quote makes more sense to me now:

And what rough beast, its hour come round at last,
Slouches towards Bethlehem to be born?

In fact if you read the Second Coming it has relevance to the story in other ways--such as the visual references to falcons and the desert(the forest fire decimated region).

I never get bored of this movie.


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Fri Apr 15, 2011 6:11 pm 

Joined: Tue Jul 14, 2009 10:16 pm
Code Red disk of it is out--it doesnt have a Holbrook interview. Quality looks ok from screen captures and its in widescreen.
Dane does an audio commentary.


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Sat Jun 11, 2011 2:30 pm 

Joined: Tue Jul 14, 2009 10:16 pm
Watched the Code Red disk of it. The image is a bit scratchy in places but overall very watchable.The sound is good. In fact having heard it without needing to strain my ears I think perhaps the script is a little too wordy lol but its great to see in a widescreen format. Will have to check out the extras.

Producer/co-star said the ending's significance is that the killer wanted Holbrook to kill him as doctors should have let him die in WW2. Also Holbrook kills more people than the stalker does--the brother by accident, DJ as a mercy killing, and potentially Mitzi out of his own self preservation.


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Thu Aug 04, 2011 2:09 pm 

Joined: Thu Aug 04, 2011 1:02 pm
A few late-to-the-party observations regarding Rituals.

1. People make far too much of the film's relationship to Deliverance, as if its having come later should automatically and forever relegate Rituals to inferior status. Dreyer's Vampyr came after Browning's Dracula, and, if the anecdotes are to be believed, was directly inspired by it (or, more precisely, in artistic competition with it). Yet, one never reads discussions of Vampyr prefaced with the qualifier, "Dracula-derived". "That's because Vampyr is a far superior film", you rejoin? Well, I and many others think that Rituals is far superior to Deliverance.

2. Many commentators portentously observe that there are no women in the film. There are no women in major, or even minor, speaking roles, it is true. There is, however, a woman in the film: The cashier who takes Harry's money at the restaurant before the group leaves for the wilderness.

3. Efforts to read the film as if its main theme were class warfare seem very tangential and unhelpful, to me. As is usual in such over-generalizing analyses, there is far too much lumping, and not enough splitting--or even individual consideration.

Making much ado about the sexual orientation of one character, whose sexuality is revealed in a single line that occupies around ten seconds of screen time, and then never resurfaces as an issue, seems equally tangential and unhelpful.

4. The main theme of the film as it relates to the hero, Harry, has to do with learning a hard lesson about moral absolutes versus adaptability and relativism.

Early in the film, Harry finds the penile extension discussion ethically repugnant, and all but says so. Later, at the campsite, a furious argument erupts between him and Mitzi about the ethics of saving life at all costs, versus letting it end if the patient appears to be in a hopeless physical condition. Harry's ethics appear to be absolute, and in favor of saving life, no matter what. His values are black-and-white and inflexible.

Later, however, Harry learns that ethics should not--indeed, cannot--be inflexible and self-righteously absolute, He demonstrates his new-found understanding by euthanizing a suffering comrade and by executing the murderous, but also deeply suffering, woodsman. Harry does not "overcome" his compassion at this climactic stage of the film: He discovers a deeper, less obvious form of compassion within himself, one that his simplistic and rigid world-view had previously kept hidden from him.

So, Rituals, in my eyes, is ultimately a film about moral and ethical ambiguity--and about the need to view value-judgments in these terms. It is difficult to see such a theme as many superficial interpreters of horror, "rural" or otherwise, tend to do; namely, as an ultimate affirmation of a smug and complacently conservative status quo.

5. "Also Holbrook kills more people than the stalker does--the brother by accident, DJ as a mercy killing, and potentially Mitzi out of his own self preservation."

Laurence Dane does say this in his interview on the Code Red disc, but he is wrong. Let's compare:

Matthew:

1. Abel: anaphylactic shock induced by multiple bee stings (hive thrown by Matthew)

2. Martin: Complications due to broken ankle (via bear trap set by Matthew)

3. Mitzi: Burned alive

Harry:

1. D.J.: Killed out of compassion, because his situation after being exposed on a chair by Matthew is hopeless

2. Jesse (Matthew's brother; killed by mistake because Harry thought he was the killer)

3. Matthew.

The body count is numerically equal.


Like Keleg, I am posting here only because I saw this discussion while I was searching for other information about Rituals. Those are interested in seeing the film should obtain the Code Red version. While imperfect, it is not only the best version of the film available, it is likely to be best that will ever be available.


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Thu Aug 04, 2011 4:54 pm 
Not PETA approved
User avatar

Joined: Wed Nov 03, 2004 9:02 pm
Location: Canada
Aldebaran wrote:
Yet, one never reads discussions of Vampyr prefaced with the qualifier, "Dracula-derived" "That's because Vampyr is a far superior film", you rejoin? Well, I and many others think that Rituals is far superior to Deliverance.

No, it's because vampires had been the subject of film, literature, and folk-tale long before Browning's film. Vampyr has too many precedents for anyone to associate it with only one movie. Not only that, the obvious source material for Vampyr is Sheridan le Fanu's story Carmilla.


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Thu Aug 04, 2011 5:34 pm 

Joined: Thu Aug 04, 2011 1:02 pm
Quote:
Vampyr has too many precedents for anyone to associate it with only one movie.

And films that feature persons lost in the wilderness stalked by persons who are trying to kill them do not?

Quote:
Not only that, the obvious source material for Vampyr is Sheridan Le Fanu's story Carmilla.

The cited source for Vampyr is not "Carmilla", but the entire book of tales entitled In A Glass Darkly. The only element that Dreyer's film has in common with "Carmilla" is a female vampire--and Dreyer's vampire, unlike Le Fanu's, is a hag. If Dreyer's film derives anything from Le Fanu, then it is far more likely to be the coffin dream scene from "The Room in the Dragon Volant".

Finally, there is the following information, from David Bordwell's book The Films of Carl Theodor Dreyer:

Quote:
In Paris, Dreyer and Christen Jul composed a script purportedly in reaction to Browning's Dracula: "I could damn well make one of those too".

At any rate, I am not interested in arguing this point with you, or in having the thread hijacked into a discussion of Dreyer and his sources for Vampyr. I was merely making an analogy to illuminate a point about the critical treatment of Rituals. Regardless of whether my Dreyer analogy convinces anyone, I stand by my point that it is senseless to reference Deliverance constantly as a sort of disclaimer before discussing Rituals seriously.


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Thu Aug 04, 2011 6:55 pm 
Not PETA approved
User avatar

Joined: Wed Nov 03, 2004 9:02 pm
Location: Canada
Aldebaran wrote:
I was merely making an analogy to illuminate a point about the critical treatment of Rituals.

Yes, by attempting to tell other people what their reason is for not associate Vampyr with Dracula, and getting that reason wrong. It is a misleading analogy that attempts to convince people of your views by phrasing their opinions for them using an inaccurate supposition. People do not fail to associate Vampyr and Dracula because they prefer the later movie, therefore there is no reason to credit someone else's preference for Rituals over Deliverance as a reason why those two later movies shouldn't also be compared. That's not to say that they should, just that your analogy doesn't demonstrate anything about it.

Also, Dreyer and Christen Jul's (purported) comment is pretty irrelevant given that their reaction was a film that doesn't resemble Dracula at all.


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Thu Aug 04, 2011 7:40 pm 

Joined: Thu Aug 04, 2011 1:02 pm
Quote:
Yes, by attempting to tell other people what their reason is for not associate Vampyr with Dracula, and getting that reason wrong.

I am not "telling" anyone anything. I stated one possible reason why one might not associate the two films. Nowhere did I claim that it was the only possible reason. You have also not demonstrated that my reason is wrong. You have simply asserted your disagreement with it.

In any event, my understanding is that most critics and film buffs consider Dracula to be artistically inferior to Vampyr. If I am mistaken, then I will happily withdraw the analogy, as the specific comparison is not especially important.

Quote:
It is a misleading analogy that attempts to convince people to your views by phrasing their opinions for them using an inaccurate supposition.

You have not demonstrated that it is an inaccurate supposition; you have merely asserted that it is so. I also did not state the matter as a "supposition"; I stated it as a possible reason for my observation about the two vampire films, followed by my rejoinder to it.

Quote:
Also, Dreyer and Christen Jul's (purported) comment is pretty irrelevant given that their reaction was a film that doesn't resemble Dracula at all.

The Dreyer quotation--not "purported", as it is referenced in Bordwell's book--clearly states that Dreyer was inspired to make Vampyr by watching Dracula. If you have any reason to question the truth or likelihood of this quotation, or why we should consider your opinion to be more authoritative than Bordwell's scholarly work, then please state your reasons, with references.

As for the comparison, it is on the level of influence and inspiration, and not on the resemblance of the respective final products. I have not read anyone state that Rituals "resembles" Deliverance. I have read that others associate the two films because of a generally similar subject matter and because one film came not too long after the other.

Anyway, that is my last word with you on this subject. If you care to have an intelligent discussion of Rituals--have you even seen the film?--then proceed. If you merely wish to engage in captious debate about minor points, however, then I do not intend to join you. As I mentioned, I prefer to keep the thread on track.

I will, however, simply state, for the last time, that I do not care whether you or others find the Vampyr analogy convincing--feel free to find another one, if it suits you; I doubt that it would be difficult to do so. I merely am critical of others' constantly referencing Deliverance when the subject of Rituals arises, and I wonder why they do not do so in other obvious instances.


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Thu Aug 04, 2011 9:10 pm 
Not PETA approved
User avatar

Joined: Wed Nov 03, 2004 9:02 pm
Location: Canada
Aldebaran wrote:
I am not "telling" anyone anything. I stated one possible reason why one might not associate the two films. Nowhere did I claim that it was the only possible reason. You have also not demonstrated that my reason is wrong. You have simply asserted your disagreement with it.

You should go back and reread what you wrote, then, because nowhere did you indicate anything about it being one among many possibilities. You were putting words in the mouths of anyone who might disagree--quite literally, too, since you made it a quote. That implies that it would be the only response, or the only likely one, which as you're now forced to admit is not the case.

As for demonstrating your reason wrong, actually it is up to you to show that it is right. All I did was posit a far more probable and considered explanation for the phenomenon along with actual reasons why it is so. It is now up to you to prove that your explanation is more tenable than mine (which you won't be able to do since it involves supposing what other people's opinions are without actually asking anyone). You can't really expect me to try to disprove that the reason people do not associate two movies is because they like one better, given that there is no evidence any of that true.

Aldebaran wrote:
The Dreyer quotation--not "purported", as it is referenced in Bordwell's book--clearly states that Dreyer was inspired to make Vampyr by watching Dracula. If you have any reason to question the truth or likelihood of this quotation, or why we should consider your opinion to be more authoritative than Bordwell's scholarly work, then please state your reasons, with references.

The word "purported" is in the passage you quoted. I assume that covers everything in the anecdote.

Aldebaran wrote:
As for the comparison, it is on the level of influence and inspiration, and not on the resemblance of the respective final products. I have not read anyone state that Rituals "resembles" Deliverance. I have read that others associate the two films because of a generally similar subject matter and because one film came not too long after the other.

There is no apparent influence or inspiration between Dracula and Vampyr. Aside from the fact that "purportedly" Dreyer and Jul were prompted to make a horror movie after having seen another horror movie, the actual influence and inspiration on Vampyr are folk-tales (especially as transmitted by Sheridan le Fanu) which would be easily recognizable. More to the point, Vampyr so little resembles the other major vampire films (Nosferatu and Dracula) that no one would associate it with any other movie. If any associations did spring to mind, it would be with vampire legends that are not reflected in Stoker's original story. It's such an easy thing to see why two very dissimilar takes on very old subject matter would not be mentioned in the same breath as each other. Without any repeated tropes, there is nothing to compel the association.

Aldebaran wrote:
I merely am critical of others' constantly referencing Deliverance when the subject of Rituals arises, and I wonder why they do not do so in other obvious instances.

What obvious instances are you thinking of? The reason why films become associated with each other is somewhat arbitrary, and often revolves around whether the advertising wishes to make the comparison. Another example--likely to be true in this case--is that one film so popularizes a particular trope that any movie in its wake to use it calls up the earlier film in the viewer's mind. It happens.


Top
 Profile  
 
Display posts from previous:  Sort by  
Post new topic Reply to topic  [ 26 posts ]  Go to page 1, 2  Next

All times are UTC - 5 hours [ DST ]


Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users


You cannot post new topics in this forum
You cannot reply to topics in this forum
You cannot edit your posts in this forum
You cannot delete your posts in this forum

Jump to:  
Powered by phpBB® Forum Software © phpBB Group




This site is not affiliated with The Criterion Collection