Monthly Archives: February 2012

Why European Conservatives, If They Exist, Have No Reasons To Live

Russ Limbaugh on Rick Santorum (after explaining that Newt Gingrich and John  Kerry were once on the same panel where they sort of agreed that global warming exists): “Nobody is innocent. Everybody is guilty on [sic] some transgression somewhere against conservatism. Except Santorum.”

Rick Santorum on Western Europeans (speaking to the conservative Pennsylvania Leadership Conference in 2006): “Those cultures are dying. People are dying. They’re being overrun from overseas…and they have no response. They have nothing to fight for. They have nothing to live for.”

Clearly, Rick Santorum can’t be guilty of any transgression against any European conservatives, secular or religious, responsive or otherwise. How could he be, because they don’t exist? Or at least have no reasons to live, or anything to fight for, anywhere. Or somewhere.

Thanks, Russ and Rick, for clarifying that we must be the only folks in the world who exist, or deserve to, or want to — at least one of those things, or maybe, if they can have their way, all three. [2/10/12]

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Chantal Akerman: The Integrity of Exile and the Everyday

I’m still recovering from the rude shock of hearing about the death of Chantal Akerman this morning (October 6, 2015).

The following was originally published in Retrospektive Chantal Akerman, a publication of the Viennale/Austrian Filmmuseum, 2011, and the second issue of the online Lola (lolajournal.com), 2012. — J.R.

Does one’s integrity ever lie in what he is not able to do? I think that usually it does, for free will does not mean one will, but many wills conflicting in one man [sic]. — Flannery O’Connor

If I have a reputation for being difficult, it’s because I love the everyday and want to present it. In general people go to the movies precisely to escape the everyday. — Chantal Akerman

A yearning for the ordinary as well as the everyday runs through Akerman’s work like a recurring, plaintive refrain. It is a longing that takes many forms: part of it is simply her ambition to make a commercially successful movie; another part is the desire of a self-destructive, somewhat regressive neurotic — Akerman herself in Saute ma ville (1968), La chambre (1972), Je, tu, il, elle (1974), and L’homme à la valise (1983); Delphine Seyrig in Jeanne Dielman, 23 Quai de Commerce, 1080 Bruxelles (1975); Aurore Clement in Les rendez-vous d’Anna (1978); Circé Lethem in Portrait d’une jeune fille de la fin des années 60 à Bruxelles (1993) — togo legit and be like “normal” people.… Read more »

Reflections on “Rivette in Context”

From Cinema Comparat/ive Cinema, Volume 1, No. 1, 2012 (a Spanish academic online journal, available at http://www.ocec.eu/cinemacomparative/pdf/ccc01.pdf) — J.R.

“Rivette in Context” had two separate incarnations, occurring a year and a half apart. The first consisted of 28 programs presented at London’s National Film Theatre in August 1977, to accompany the publication of Rivette: Texts and Interviews – a 101-page book I had edited for the British Film Institute while still working on the staffs of two of its magazines, Monthly Film Bulletin and Sight and Sound, in 1976.

This book included a polemical Introduction by me and translations — most of them by my London flat mate, Tom Milne — of two lengthy interviews with Rivette (one in 1968 that was centered on L’amour fou, the other in 1973 that was centered on the two separate versions of Out 1), three key critical texts by him (“Letter on Rossellini,” 1955; “The Hand” [on Lang’s Beyond a Reasonable Doubt], 1957, and “Montage” [with Jean Narboni and Sylvie Pierre], 1969), and a brief, undated proposal of his from the mid-1970s (“For the Shooting of Les Filles du Feu” — the latter was the working title for a projected series of four features, never completed, that was subsequently retitled Scènes de la Vie Parallèle).… Read more »