Favourites aren’t favourites - just ones I like
Saw it screened at Filmtheater de Uitkijk, Amsterdam.
As a whole it’s obviously a masterpiece, but the performance of The Red Shoes itself is arguably the greatest montage ever put to film. The heightened artifice edited into a limbo of abyss to reflect Vicky’s own self prophetically merging with the character she is playing. She leaves the stage and is transported to a dreamworld where a dark reality encroaches, all while maintaining her onstage performance, wrapped up in colours, sets,…
The first scene enforcing the recurring theme of a lack of agency and true knowledge of the situation; the rug being pulled to reveal the subject as part of something much larger, unbeknownst to themselves. These reveals revelling in symbols of theatricality: movie sets, cameras, screens, masks, etc. Aside from his classic stylistic flourishes, this is most certainly as much of a Brian De Palma movie as any.
Being a big Talking Heads fan I already knew I’d love this, but I caught myself genuinely laughing at times at just how good it is. Watched a version of it that was uploaded on YouTube so the picture quality wasn’t great. Need to watch a more polished version because Demme’s direction is actually fantastic in this. An all-time performance by David Byrne brought to you courtesy of the purest cocaine imaginable.