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May 24, 2014

Blue Movie

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Alberto Cavallone - 1978
Raro Video Region 1 DVD

Maybe it will take more, ahem, exposure, to the films of Alberto Cavallone, but I'm not convinced of anything other than a talent for creating a pastiche of other films from some better filmmakers. There's the disillusioned photographer from Blow-up encountering a psychologically disturbed young woman form Repulsion. The photographer collects urine in empty soda cans, and feces in cigarette packs. He also prefers to photograph empty soda cans rather than attractive young women, dressed and undress, because he thinks it's more honest. As the notes in the booklet mention, this is also one of two movies Cavallone made with a title previously used by Andy Warhol.

The film open with the sound of a clicking camera and gunfire. The photographer also has flashback's of various scenes of violence in Vietnam. A young woman that he rescues, and keeps in his house, has flashbacks of being raped, with her attacker reappearing in various unlikely places. Maybe Cavallone thought he was saying something radical with piss in Coke cans, and shit in Marlboro packs, and perhaps for some audience members, he was. My own reaction is that following in a path set by others does not constitute transgressive cinema.

There is not much in English on Cavallone. Short of the DVD booklet, there is also this piece in Mubi. The DVD was taken from a 16mm print. Extras include some excerpts from an 8mm version including some hard core sex. This is one of those rare times when I find it hard to put a positive spin on what I've seen, other than to say that the film may be of some historical interest. The DVD includes interviews with some of the crew members and the lead actor, plus excerpts from an audio interview with Cavallone. As long as Raro Video is going to bring back the work of forgotten Italian filmmakers, I say that Ugo Gregoretti should be given attention. Who's that, you ask? He is the G of the omnibus film RoGoPaG, the other guys being the still revered Rossellini, Godard and Pasolini.

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Posted by peter at May 24, 2014 06:22 AM