domingo, 23 de março de 2014

Siegel por Rissient

When I was very young, I saw Riot in Cell Block 11, and I felt it was a remarkable film in terms of directing style. And also the actors were terrific. Then I saw Baby Face Nelson and I noticed that the screenwriter was Daniel Mainwaring, who had written novels and some early scripts under the name of Geoffrey Homes, and who I thought was an excellent screenwriter who wasn’t as well known as he should be. Eventually, I became very friendly with him, which led to my becoming very friendly with Don Siegel.

I was discovering cinema. I was discovering film noir. I was discovering genre films. And what I liked in all of that was the physicality of the direction. I started to develop the conviction that cinema is not supposed to be intellectual — of course, it’s supposed to be intelligent, which is something else — and that it must be physical. If you think of Riot in Cell Block 11, you can imagine exactly what I was feeling — the physicality of the action, the leanness of the action. The mood is very dark, but at the same time it isn’t false. It’s a mood that comes from the subject matter, rather than being forced on top of it. Don was extremely good at studying groups of characters. For example, in Riot in Cell Block 11, there is a group of people in jail, and also the wardens. In Hell is for Heroes, there is a group of soldiers. In The Beguiled, it’s a group of women. And he places himself as an observer, almost a kind of entomologist.

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