Movie Diary 1/18/2010

I Walked with a Zombie (Jacques Tourneur, 1943). People rightly talk about how poetic this movie is, but it’s also so intelligent, and all the people in it are intelligent. Excuse for re-watching it is my lecture next week on radical literary adaptations (this one is loosely based on Jane Eyre). I think I need to find an excuse to watch it at least once a year from now on.

Toby Dammit (Federico Fellini, 1968). Also for the adaptation thing. Fellini’s segment in Spirits of the Dead, a movie I watched sometime in adolescence, totally weirded out, though not actually in the good way. The original Poe story, “Never Bet the Devil Your Head,” is really pretty funny. The little Satanic girl seems like the inspiration for all the long-haired demons of the Ring movies and their imitators.

Police, Adjective (Corneliu Porumboiu, 2009). Another notch in the belt for the Romanian New Wave. Doesn’t have that taut-string suspension of Mr. Lazarescu or 4 Months etc., but good. (full review 1/29)