Movie Diary 9/2/2019

Kill Baby … Kill! (Mario Bava, 1966), and Hatchet for the Honeymoon (Mario Bava, 1970). Both are colorful, well-dressed, hoked-up Bava pictures. Kill is very slow, even though it provides a lot of eye candy. Hatchet wallows in a more decadent mode, and has that wonderful 70s Euro-horror vibe in abundance; plus, leading man Stephen Forsyth seems to be in on the zany spirit of the thing (it was his last role before giving up acting in favor of a composing career). He can really rock a yellow ascot, too.

Defending Your Life (Albert Brooks, 1991). A re-visit to Brooks’s amusing afterlife comedy, where the jokes remain securely in place, even if the turn-of-the-decade-Hollywood-comedy mode seems a little dated (Michael Gore’s music, especially). Special mention to the comic stylings of Rip Torn, who really nails it.

Be Natural: The Untold Story of Alice Guy-Blaché (Pamela E. Green, 2018). This documentary about the film pioneer moves at breakneck speed, and should serve as a useful intro to an underappreciated force in early film. More at the Scarecrow Video blog here.