Monday, January 07, 2013

Artistic Consumption Log, Dec. 31, 2012 - Jan. 6, 2013

BROOKLYN, N.Y.—This was a fairly light week in artistic consumption, and attendant earth-shattering revelations were kept to a minimum. The closest I came to such an experience was with Italian filmmaker Pier Paolo Pasolini's 1971 adaptation of The Decameron, the opening panel of his so-called "Trilogy of Life." Actually, "life" could be one way to suggest the scope of Pasolini's film underlying the deceptive lightness of touch; many of the episodes in this unabashedly episodic film may deal with matters of flesh and spirit—but really, broadly speaking, isn't "flesh" and "spirit" the two things that make up all human existence, more or less? Pasolini's film feels like the work of a filmmaker who, taking off from Boccaccio's source material, wanted to cram in everything he had on his mind regarding sex, love, religion, class differences and art into this one film; the result is consistently surprising, endlessly playful, often irreverently funny but not without moments of darkness to puncture the frothy, airy surface at certain points. But hey, that's just how life itself is like, right? I wish I had been able to see the other two films in Pasolini's triptych, The Canterbury Tales (1972) and Arabian Nights (1974), this weekend at Museum of Modern Art...but thankfully, in this case, it's the Criterion Collection to the rescue!

The Decameron (1971)


Cheyenne Autumn (1964, John Ford), seen at Walter Reade Theater in New York

$ellebrity (2012, Kevin Mazur), seen via screener link at home in Brooklyn, N.Y.

The Decameron (1971, Pier Paolo Pasolini), seen at Museum of Modern Art in New York


Apollo: Atmospheres & Soundtracks (1983, Brian Eno)
The Pearl (1984, Brian Eno)

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