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Marie Antoinette - was i the only one?

Discussion in 'Movies' started by EricSJorg, Oct 20, 2006.

  1. Mike.P

    Mike.P Well-Known Member

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    Very well done for about 1 hour and 40 minutes - but the last 20 minutes should have been fleshed out much more.

    I found myself checking my watch saying "ut oh, this one is running out of time and theres alot of information about to be crammed".

    Overall I'd say a 7.5 out of 10. Well written, acted, and directed, but the last 20 minutes really did hurt the overall score. Loved the music, as well.

    EDIT: Also, Nathan, wonderful job summing up similar thoughts to what I felt. I still feel it had problems, though, but like you, I really felt she definately hit the nail on the head with dealing with so many universal issues.
     
  2. Aaron Reynolds

    Aaron Reynolds Well-Known Member

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    Were you hoping for period instruments, or an anachronistic orchestra instead?

    I'm only half joking...
     
  3. Shad R

    Shad R Well-Known Member

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    I'm a projectionist, and at least on the projectors I use (small middle-American cinema...ie...old projector!) you can't really thread it "wrong." On ours, you thread it through, then adjust the picture using a manuel "move the picture up, movie the picture down and focus" nobs. The only thing I can think of is if he went ALL the way to the top of the frame. Anyhow, he should have noticed and moved it down a bit. In my town, no one would have even noticed...or cared since the kids are too busy throwing Penut M&M's at each other and trying to break the chairs!
     
  4. Steve Felix

    Steve Felix Well-Known Member

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    Even if I didn't love Coppola's films, I would love her for keeping Kevin Shields working. His remix of Bow Wow Wow's "Fools Rush In" is his best work since Loveless, I think.

    Lance Acord's photography is quite different from his work in Lost in Translation. Many shots use a big depth of field to clutter the frame with the Stuff that overwhelms Marie. In other frames, there is rigidity and symmetry unseen in LIT that illustrates how few paths Marie has available.

    I knew before I saw the first trailer that Coppola would make Marie Antoinette seem contemporary, but I didn't expect her plight to seem so relevant. Marie's lack of choice is all that separates her circumstances from those of the modern young person. Not that I'm shedding any tears for my generation, but it is a unique challenge to be faced with infinite and practically free entertainment options. The opportunity to not grow up faces the youth of all developed countries.

    Despite a very direct homage to Malick, this film cements Coppola as the Antonioni of our time.

    PS: I was lucky with the projection at my local AMC -- it was the first film I've seen in perfect focus maybe in my life.
     
  5. Nathan V

    Nathan V Well-Known Member

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    Great comments, Steve Felix. Very insightful. You have a way with words, especially with regard to the developed country not-growing up stuff. Coppola as today's Antonioni- sweet observation. I'll have to think about that for a while. I need to see more of that guy's films. I may have to catch this again before I leave town.

    Regards,
    Nathan
     
  6. Kirk Tsai

    Kirk Tsai Well-Known Member

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    I was pleasantly surprised by this film, because Coppola's previous films never grabbed me that much, despite her strong grasp of the fleeting feelings of alienation. Part of it is because of the scrumptious visual impact it has. The mise en scene and photography is a feast. I also agree with Steve that this contains a lot more formal compositions than Coppola's previous work, and it really works here.

    In addition to Malick, this film most reminded me of Kubrick's Barry Lyndon. The visual pallette is so rich and engaging, you practically live in that time. Both pictures have countless frames that are straight out of paintings worthy of Renior. Kubrick was more explicitly pointed in his critique of the society; that's probably because Coppola, on some level, identifies with her main character more.

    Watching this film makes me want to revisit Coppola's previous films to see her style and progress, whereas LiT always felt like Wong Kar Wai lite to me. She is a unique voice, and despite not loving her previous pictures, I will be looking forward to whatever she does in the future.
     
  7. Ted Todorov

    Ted Todorov Well-Known Member

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    I loved what was done with the music, which worked on several levels, including paradoxically to make the film more realistic. How many period films have totally lost you with dance scenes where beautifully recorded, usually anachronistic classical music is playing at full blast, and everyone is dancing like they were choreographed by pros?

    In Marie Antoinette the party scene conveyed a real party, with the music echoing, muffled in the background and no choreographed ridiculousness. All of the anachronisms in Marie Antoinette were there to convey that you were watching someone's here-and-now instead of some musty costume drama.

    Anyway, I hope no one who is offended by the music spots the pair of purple Converse sneakers, or their head might explode [​IMG]

    Ted
     
  8. Nathan V

    Nathan V Well-Known Member

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    Interesting, Kirk. This month's American Cinemtographer has Lance Acord explicitly saying that every effort was made not to evoke paintings from the era, and simply offer, together with the music, the experience of being there. I feel the need to see this again. Sort of reminds me of the director of American Psycho talking about how hard she tried to make clear that the ending is entirely real, even as so many viewers see otherwise.

    Regards,
    Nathan
     
  9. Kirk Tsai

    Kirk Tsai Well-Known Member

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    Nathan, Renoir was not of that time, but a century later. [​IMG] They definitely succeeded in making me feel like being "there."
     
  10. Steve Felix

    Steve Felix Well-Known Member

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    Thanks very much Nathan, the feeling is mutual, but now I feel like I should clarify. Coppola approaches Antonioni's themes from a different angle. That angle is Wong Kar Wai-ish sensitivity mixed with her own optimism. (Now I sound like a name dropping music critic.) Her characters come out of their ennui as better, more focused people, whereas the same can't be said for Antonioni's.

    The Virgin Suicides doesn't fit this framework very well, but if I accept Ebert's idea that the film is about the boys, it fits better.

    Kirk: I haven't seen Barry Lyndon yet, and I really need to get around to it. I believe Coppola has said that it was a major influence.
     
  11. EricSJorg

    EricSJorg Member

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    Glad I'm not the only one who saw that. Took a second viewing to be 100% sure they were really there. Strangely they didn't look that out of place with the shoes she was trying on.
     
  12. Nathan V

    Nathan V Well-Known Member

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    Kirk Tsai,

    I'm aware, as I'm an art major myself [​IMG] For me, however, classical compositions in film do not evoke verisimilitude, or "being there," or whatever we want to call it, as much as they evoke the unique feeling of just looking at a painting from a similar or relevant period. For me, it's a feeling of "filtered" reality, if that makes sense. For example, the Caravaggio shot in Last Temptation makes me think of Caravaggio, more than Willem Dafoe's plight; it distances and elevates the moment by providing a visual "reminder" that puts the story into a decidedly larger mental context. Of course, this is not a bad thing, as it is ultimately all about conveying Dafoe's situation. Barry Lyndon takes the distancing angle to an extreme, and is distanced even by Kubrick's standards. With Marie Antoinette, however, I got a different reaction that was much more immediate to the character, and I feel this was, in part, a result of Acord's (and Coppola's) compositional sense, their choice of handheld during many scenes, and Coppola's very contemporary blocking. I realize that you didn't say that Coppola was purposefully emulating 18th century paintings, but I just thought I'd clarify my personal reaction to the film's approach.

    I wish more people would go and see this.

    Regards,
    Nathan
     
  13. All I can say about Barry Lyndon is it is shot beautifully and it will take a few viewing to appreciate the film. It took me 4 times before I was able to sit through and actually enjoy the film. It is a slow moving film, but once you are in the mood to watch it it is a sight to see.
     
  14. luckyluke310

    luckyluke310 New Member

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    No I saw it too, and I saw the many scenes with the boom mic. I think it was horrible attention to detail.
     
  15. ChrisBEA

    ChrisBEA Well-Known Member

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    .... by the projectionist. (just had to complete that for you)
     

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