Friday, April 30, 2010

crossing borders

she may have been austrian born but she is a icon of french cinema. france is deeply devoted to it's 'own' and romy schneider (french citizen) is one of their most prized possessions. i cannot imagine the collective swoon the country made when she and alain delon were together.

first crush

i fell in love with the name and then every single work of art i discovered signed by that name which was always accompanied by a little star. jean cocteau paved the way for 'all things poetic' and i recognize his influence immediately.

from his first film, 'blood of a poet' he invited the world into his imagination. there is not one area of creativity he did not explore and nourish. poet, painter, novelist, filmmaker, screenwriter, and admitted opium smoker, the tall thin man with manners to spare left a legacy of exquisite work behind.

in his own way he was the warhol of his time, an individual who knew every artist and collaborated with many of them. talented, refined, yet unconventional makes for a seriously good cocktail.

photos: unknown/cocteau's 'blood of a poet'

what's in a name

what can i say about michael pitt that isn't obvious?

perfect portrait

jean-luc godard. unpretentious and refreshing like his cinema.

Thursday, April 29, 2010

glorious future

the man who would fall to earth.

the knack

"But I'd been around a lot before I met any of the Rolling Stones," says Pallenberg, in her beautiful, wood-panelled, apartment overlooking Chelsea Embankment. "I was in Rome in 1960 just as La Dolce Vita was happening and met [Federico] Fellini, Alberto Moravia, [Luchino] Visconti and [Paolo] Pasolini. Then I went to model in New York in 1963 and hung out with Andy Warhol and all the Pop artists, and met the Beat poets. And then I went to Paris."

and THEN she went to paris. and THEN she lived with keith and made a movie with mick. a great movie.

on the filming of 'performance': 'We'd sit huddled together in the basement, shivering, getting stoned and waiting for scenes that we would eventually do maybe 28 times.' prima donna director and tedious cinematographer aside, it sure looked glamourous to me. i wanted to step into the film, a la 'purple rose of cairo' and know these people.

understatement of the day: "I've often been in the right place at the right time," says Pallenberg. "I guess it's a knack."

photos: james fox finds 'viewfinder' particularly fun after a meal which had been spiked with hallucinogenic mushrooms by anita/amanita muscaria: poisonous.

who knew

i just discovered one very hip fact of renee zellweger's career. a film she did in 1994 called 'love and a .45' included a tom verlaine track.


'The dance is a poem of which each movement is a word.' - Mata Hari

her mortal coil

greta garbo played her. ingrid bergman dropped her name in the great film, 'notorious.' sylvia kristal, seventies icon of cinema's sexual liberation, portrayed her as well. it is a name as well known as 'svengali.' very real and widely misused, mata hari (which means 'eye of the day' in indonesian) is going down in history.

born Margaretha Geertruida Zelle in holland on august 7, 1876, she was a mail order bride, dancer, circus horse rider(!) and toast of parisian music halls. accused of being a spy and collaborating with the germans, she was arrested while staying at the plaza athenee hotel in paris. found guilty she was executed at age 41.

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

the third time

Calloway: Go home Martins, like a sensible chap. You don't know what you're mixing in, get the next plane.
Martins: As soon as I get to the bottom of this, I'll get the next plane.
Calloway: Death's at the bottom of everything, Martins. Leave death to the professionals.
Martins: Mind if I use that line in my next Western? - from 'the third man'

i love orson welles, joseph cotten, novelist graham greene, actress valli, and gorgeous black and white films that are so layered that every time i watch them it feels like a fresh experience. tonight's the night for another viewing of 'the third man.'

the answer

'What do you want a meaning for? Life is a desire, not a meaning.' -charlie chaplin

france's first family

hang in there darling daughter. you are gonna be an actress! what a sweet snap of charlotte and papa serge gainsbourg.

Monday, April 26, 2010

draw the curtain

last night i ordered the pink floyd movie, the one where david gilmour sings through his long strands of hair from the stage of an empty amphitheatre (amp hit theatre!) in greece. it just seems like the right time to see it again. the other person i love to listen to as they sing through long strands of hair is kurt. 'live! tonight! sold out!' is great. brilliant music aside, the documentary has priceless moments such as kurt inquiring about the band 'extreme.' ('i wonder if they know how much they suck?')

photo: look at that cat smiling. major fan.

just trying to get some peace

although pete doherty's reputation is like a monstrous shadow securing him a place in the dark, the guy is wonderfully special as a musician. a handful of his songs have appeared in films but all his talent seems to run a close second to his history of drugs and prison time. this here photo could be him and one time sweetheart kate moss. however, they met quite a bit later.


“Monty never stopped. Never stopped talking or drinking. He was always in motion, performing little jigs, mimicking stories, curling his body around chairs. He seemed innately charming, ludicrous, disagreeable, shifting, teetering into his own little abyss.”

- Maria Schell recalling Montgomery Clift’s quirks.

i love actress maria schell. like julie christie she is very poetic onscreen. this may be the most relatable photo of montgomery i've ever seen.

image courtesy of 'it's all happening'

staying power

meryl streep is the bob dylan of her field. cate blanchett may have played him in a film but it is meryl who gets to drag around that lovely ball and chain labeled 'best actress alive.' i doubt it worries her. even though she has probably shined bright in over fifty films, it is only one movie that comes to mind when i think of this actress. 'sophie's choice' was unreal magnificent and kevin kline was as wonderful as his leading lady.
meryl coninues to stay hip and the proof is in the fact that her recent film had a beach boys track included! 'wouldn't it be nice' is one of those songs that remains, like meryl, relevant.

family tree

although i have not seen the 'twilight' films i surely know what the leads look like. this beautiful woman from a long time ago really looks like kristen stewart to me.

Sunday, April 25, 2010


'Put me in the last fifteen minutes of a picture and I don`t care what happened before. I don`t even care if I was IN the rest of the damned thing - I`ll take it in those fifteen minutes.' -barbara stanwyck. the woman rules.

sylvie testud

that funny little character who traisped around montmartre with piaf in 'la vie en rose' was played by sylvie testud. as 'mômone', piaf's half sister, she was protective, tipsy, supportive, and ultimately fed up. sylvie brought as much life to her role as marion did to hers.

since that incredible film she has done 14 more, including the portrayal of france's most beloved writer francoise sagan. apparently great casting follows her around.

photos from top: sylvie/with marion cotillard in 'la vie en rose'/francoise sagan/franciose with jean seberg

au natural


the winner

i have now seen a handful of garbo silent films. my fave is 'the single standard.' garbo's role is contemporary, the story is universal, and her co-star nils asther is just a doll. whether she is bored at the mansion, rainsoaked as she steps into a gallery, sun kissed as she frolics with her lover on his boat, or being caressed by the most adorable child on film, garbo is completely natural and philosophic in this 1939 movie.

so that's how it's done

not only might she be working from home but marilyn ain't even getting out of bed.

how to

bardot and her heartachingly great hair

pronounced sheen yon

Woman with Chignon (1901) by Pablo Picasso

you too can look like a french actress!

what a dame

"There is a lack of dignity to film stardom" - Marlene Dietrich.

what a dame part two

'You should lay off those candy bars.... You're a mess, honey.' marlene delivers the line so nicely to orson welles in 'touch of evil.' it's that 'honey' that makes it work.

happy sunday

the usually very modest johnny.

Saturday, April 24, 2010

time's running

the modern world keeps looming up around paris. it may not change the cities original neighborhoods or the deep love of cinema that the people have but it may change the experience of visiting the most beautiful of cities.

le dernier cigarette

marion cotillard and sweeteheart guillaume canet share a last smoke.

Friday, April 23, 2010


'Is there anybody going to listen to my story
All about the girl who came to stay?
She's the kind of girl you want so much
It makes you sorry
Still you don't regret a single day.
Ah girl' from the beatles song 'girl'

pattie boyd acted in three films. she was only ever cast as 'the girl.' i do believe she was my first role model. how i could i resist wanting to be like the person married to george harrison.

my kind

best design ever

i just saw a list of 179 films that featured a porsche! not all of them could have been the turtle shaped darling that i have dreamed of owning since i first saw one in my high school daze.

serious moonlight

some serious stylin' going on here with winona ryder and gary oldman.

'65 (so good to be alive)

this is the exact photo (where he autographed it) that cemented my allegiance to george as my fave beatle. i was given two copies of 'rubber soul' on that particular birthday. i exchanged one of them for 'december's children' and it was while listening to 'blue turns to grey', on my back with my head between my speakers, that i realized my friend's older sister was right about the stones.

Paul McCartney, left, producer George Martin and Harrison craft a song for "Rubber Soul" in 1965.

solo flight

'Watch out now, take care
Beware of greedy leaders
They take you where you should not go
While Weeping Atlas Cedars
They just want to grow, grow and grow
Beware of darkness'- george harrison's 'beware of darkness' (his first solo record)

weeping atlas cedars are characterized by limp twigs and a bent crown. a tree devotee! of course harrison was inspired by such unusual beauty.