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In the spirit of our recent mega-posts – written in collaboration with BoxingUweBoll – about unforgettable closing and opening scenes, today we bring you a great scene that happens to also be the opening to Takashi Miike‘s Happiness of the Katakuris, a 2001 movie so off it’s rocker it reaches a sort of fever-dream blissfulness. And once you watch the way this movie begins – with an absurd bang that defies all logic, cinematic or otherwise – you’ll no doubt understand the excitement this director sparked when he first burst on the scene in the late 90’s. This is not the sort of stuff the suits in Hollywood would – or could – allow. Which tells you about the current state of American film relative to the stuff coming in from overseas.

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August 22, 2011   1 Comment

Great Puppet Debauchery – MARQUIS

MARQUIS is the other, lesser known “puppetry of the penis” movie.

1989’s Marquis is absolutely riveting, and so visually striking it’s like nothing else you’ve ever seen. Henri Xhonneux directs from a script co-written with Roland Topor, who was screenwriter of the animated classic Fantastic Planet and Polanski’s The Tenant. The characters in this film are played by dancers in full costumes and elaborate masks (sort of like the ones in Garbage Pail Movie but not as creepy, being less human-like). Their movements are subtle and hypnotic and weave a spell around the viewer, which when synced up to the overdubbed dialogue lends everything a sing-song-y quality. It works on some profound levels – I’m no psychologist but I can tell you there’s something deeply unnerving about watching a curvaceous body in a dominatrix costume sporting the head of a horse! The two main characters are the Marquis and his penis, and they spend a lot of time locked in prison, discussing various philosophies, among them the appeal of holes in nearby walls. And as you find yourself sucked in to this bizarre world where the photography is lush and the camera lingers on an adorable little penis face urging its master to take him out to play, you’ll no doubt feel several mixed emotions, many of them wrong – but in a good way.

May 21, 2010   2 Comments

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