What is Hollywood, you ask, dear children? A quorum of whores babbling endlessly on about fucking while the bordello is razed for a penny arcade -- Paul Bern

Thursday, August 19, 2010


Historically, your abuelo's auteurism polemicized that that film object that the middlebrow thought was JUNK, the second or third rank product generated by the studio machinery, was really the work of an individual artist. These artists themselves, more intimate with the way the sausages were ground, often denied their artistic condition -- their scars and humiliations were still fresh wounds, and any autonomy from what they often saw as hackwork could only be bought with occasional success --  but at the same time, being artists, they loved the attention that was lavished on them by the abuelos. It was infinitely harder for the White Elephant broker to ever find his way to the love of posterity. Smart people, for this reason, cannot give George Stevens his due.

This termitic class of auteurs today we might find among people like Sheldon Lettich, Jay Roach, Sidney J. Furie, Yamada Yoji, etc.

What we often have today is that the middlebrow geniuses, (Tarantino, Aronofsky, Scorcese, Nolan, Boyle, etc...) who often have solid artistic credentials from the hardscrabble universitas indiecae, but in contrast, whose films, almost by definition, have that pretentious air-sucking quality (The idea of art as an expensive hunk of well-regulated area, both logical and magical, sits heavily, etc...) but also have baroque & cannily pre-meditated termitic spaces in them. The infestation is always under control. Incoherence is always a PRODUCT in these films.

There is no terrifying Farberian purity here because the audience WANTS a White Elephant disguised as a termite.  Only THAT can inflame their callow seriousness.

What's a poor schmuck to do...?

Self-consciously INDICATE the termitic spaces with a flourish, which rather defeats the purpose...but the kids eat it up anyway.

The ideal solution would be another auteur assigned scenes at random to work against the grain of the baggy monster. But that would be just re-starting the dream maquila all over again.

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