Posts by: Nicholas Rombes

EmilyRumpus

Emily, Eyes Shut

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Emily understands already that looking through the microscope has changed her, reaffirmed what she always felt: that the visible world is not as it appears… To look inward, at the smallest of things—this is what novels do. And now microscopes.

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10/40/70 #37: Marnie

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This ongoing experiment in film writing freezes a film at 10, 40, and 70 minutes, and keeps the commentary as close to those frames as possible. This week, I examine Marnie, directed by Alfred Hitchcock (1964):

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Julia Kristeva’s Face

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In the winter of 1989 I had finished my first semester of graduate studies in English at Penn State University and received, in my campus mailbox, the comments from my professors for the “Introduction to Graduate Studies” class.

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10/40/70 Contest

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This coming Wednesday, March 30, a new 10/40/70 experimental film column will be published here at The Rumpus.

In the spirit of the absurd beauty of spring, if you can identify the film I’ll be writing about from this single frame, e-mail me at nrombes AT hotmail.com with your address and I’ll mail you a frame from a mysterious 16mm film I discovered recently in an archive, as well as a short note typed on interesting letterhead.

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Nicholas Rombes’ Art Film Roundup

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In at least two of his novels, Thomas Pynchon mentions a Porky Pig cartoon from the 1930s.

Here is the reference from The Crying of Lot 49 (1965), as Oedipa Maas listens to an old man named Thoth, whose grandfather was an Indian killer: “Did you ever see the one about Porky Pig and the anarchist?” he asks her.

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Nicholas Rombes’ Art Film Roundup

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Before the fiasco of the “rock musical” Spider-Man: Turn Off the Dark, Julie Taymor worked in smaller savageries, especially Titus (1999), her adaptation of Shakespeare’s Titus Andronicus.

The movie was a bit of an easy target. It was released after Richard III (1995) with Ian McKellan, and Romeo + Juliet (1996) directed by Baz Luhrmann, both of which scrambled time and place and tone in ways that seemed to reflect the shallow, ahistorical excesses of postmodernism.

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Nicholas Rombes’ Art Film Roundup

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Another clip from Polish director Andrzej Zulawski’s masterpiece Possession (1981), starring Isabelle Adjani and Sam Neill.

The movie piles on one outrageous, tornado-like scene after another, but it is often the quiet, in-between moments that are more deeply eerie. In this scene such a moment occurs at around 1:50, just after the cars fall off the truck.

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Nicholas Rombes’ Art Film Roundup

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The 2010 Sundance Film Festival Shorts came through town for a one-night only showing, which I caught earlier this week at the grand old Michigan Theater in Ann Arbor.

The jury prize winner in international filmmaking, The Six Dollar Fifty Man (New Zealand, 15 minutes) was supposed to be poignant and funny and a little scary, and it was all of those, but not in a good way.

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10/40/70 #29: Duel in the Sun

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This ongoing experiment in film writing freezes a film at 10, 40, and 70 minutes, and keeps the commentary as close to those frames as possible. This week, I examine Duel in the Sun, directed by King Vidor (1946):

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