Cocteau's "The Beauty and The Beast" (1946)

The Beast Looking Upon The Beauty
(though I find them both beautiful)

No words. No words. No words. But, maybe a few. The first viewing-experience of this film several years ago stole my heart. It is a visual marvel. You won't ever see another rendintion of this story like this particular feast (and that means films of past, cartoons, stage performances, &c., &c.). This dazzling film fills my entire Being with streaming floods of joy. I really can't describe it, and it doesn't need to be described (unless you really want me to).

If you have never had the pleasure of seeing this, please try and find time to do so. Let your heart flood with joy like mine and then we can discuss how it feels; then we can discuss the film itself, or vice-versa. I'm pretty sure that you will be happily-pleased.

from Cocteau's The Beauty and The Beast


Cocteau's "Orpheus" (1950)

Orpheus (1950)

Cocteau's classic Orpheus is an "allegorical film" that retells the legend of Orpheus in a more contemporary setting.

"Orphee (Marais) is a successful Parisian poet, who -- despite popular acclaim -- feels isolated and uninspired. When his wife Eurydice (Dea) is striken down by leather-clad bikers, he pursues them into the underworld where he falls into a romantic entaglement with the dark-haired beauty Death (Casares). Stunning cinematography and surrealist flairs punctuate this beautiful, hypnotic masterpiece."

If you are familiar with this particular story, then be prepared for some Cocteau-magic (variously-related). As per usual with Cocteau, his surrealistic out-pouring of shadowly-dressed cinematic-language really speaks volumes for this film, as dazzling and delightful as it is, and no other director can so inextricably intertwine such familiar-bizarrities of our everyday discourse into a mind-bending turn-of-expression that harmoniously drives you into wanting so much more like Cocteau could, and did, and will - exhibitions of dashing surprises, fantasiacal-expressionism and the usual rattling of positioning you directly into the story itself.

Unfortunately, I've yet to see the other two films of this trilogy (The Blood of a Poet and The Testament of Orpheus), but soon they shall be on my viewing radar. However, Orpheus itself should really snag your hook, without an overbalanced tug, that will leave you astonished and admiring such a Triumph of artistic-brilliance.



La Moustache (2005)

La Moustache (2005)

Marc: "What if I shave my moustache off?"
Agnes: "No idea. I like you with it. I don't know you without it."

Some people find this film "compelling" yet "unsatisfying," however as time has more commonly shown (in a well-directed exercise of looking for/finding these odd films) not many find (if even understand the reasoning) why these "kinds" of celluoidial-feasts entertain, satisfy and deeply-magnetize certain individual's tingly-tong of "Oh, this really gets me!"

This brilliant, uniquely-cinematic drama seeps of Luis Buñuel-esque exertions, intentional-blunders, unsetteling unnervingness and am-
I-going-mad-or-are-they-going-mad?-grandeur of motion. As one reviewer stated, the film is "A meditation on the complexities of intimate relationships" and life's faulty performances that keep most people stating how "life is such a beautifully-weird thing."

Agnes does not, nor does anyone, notice that Marc has shaved off his moustache.

From imdb: "Marc is sitting in his bath one morning and asks his wife, "how would you feel if I shaved off my mustache?" She doesn't think it's a great idea, for the 15 years they've been married, she's never known him without his 'stache. He shaves it off anyway, but when he sees his wife, she doesn't notice, neither do their friends at dinner that night, neither do his co-workers. Marc finally flips out, shouts at everyone, tells them he's tired of their little joke, and what do they really think. His wife and co-workers are appalled, what is he talking about, he's never had a moustache. In fact, he's imagining other things as well, or is he?"

Most people didn't enjoy the conclusion of the film, but I personally found that it strengthened the bizarrity of it. My critical taste-buds seem to produce a train of reasoning when it comes to these 'types' of films. I predict, in the years to come, this particular delight will have a "cult following" just like Martin Scorsese's early effort, the wonderfully-strange film, The Big Shave.

La Moustache (2005) -
Marc ponders why no one notices.


Mirage (1965)

Gregory Peck in Mirage (1965)

Easily one of the more underrated films of the '60's, if hardly known, about a corporate executive (played beautifully by Gregory Peck) that realizes he has been suffering from amnesia for the past two years (bringing to mind another similar obscure bizarrity in regards to the strange portraits of memory loss, Mister Buddwing, which was released only one year later in 1966), after a sudden blackout in a New York City skyscraper (such a memorable cityscape-opening that will leave you begging to know "why" [naturally]). Walter Matthau plays a quirky, brilliant private detective (Peck being his first "client" interestingly-enough) that Peck hires after visiting a wacky, know-all-"I'm-better-than-Freud" therapist (played by Robert H. Harris) to help try and sort out and illustrate a better understanding for these "sufferings." Matthau, in his whimsically-entertaining ways, steals the thunder, in my opinion, for a period of time, while events unfold and shape up into an interesting twisting-mold of unleavened mystery (and anxiety on part of the viewer). Diane Baker plays a mysterious woman who, early on in this feature, enters into his life, thus adding a bit of pudding to the mystery. Soon, two killers (played by George Kennedy and Jack Weston) are attempting to gun him down. Do any of these particular individuals have something to do with a highly-important man (Peck's boss, Walter Abel) jumping (or was he?) from the 27th floor on the night of the power outage? (which is a fantastically-powerful scene; the usage of a watermelon splattering onto the concrete sidewalk as a metaphor for, well, a splattering human being -- perfect!) ... You will have to see for yourself to find out!

You can watch the first 10 minutes and 29 seconds of the film Here.

Mirage (1965)