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  • Bambi

  • Syncopation

  • Yankee Doodle Dandy

  • Mrs. Miniver

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  • Bambi

    Bambi

    Saccharine Symphony
    June 29, 1942

    The new Disney cartoon Bambi is interesting because it’s the first one that’s been entirely unpleasant. The robust irrationality of the mouse comedies has been squelched completely by the syrup that has been gradually flowing over the Disney way. In an attempt to ape the trumped-up realism of flesh and blood movies, he has given up fantasy, which was pretty much the magic element. Mickey Mouse and Donald Duck lived in a beautiful escape land,…

  • Syncopation

    Syncopation

    Hollywood Blues
    June 22, 1942

    For esthetes there is nothing so much fun as kicking the movies around. It is the obscenity of the arts, they say, and it’s been that way since the day Griffith’s Intolerance failed at the box office. The esthetes are usually pale, one-sided people, who, if they can’t see the perfect, see nothing at all. But the movies don’t do much to prove them wrong. Take the picture Syncopation. It is the third Hollywood attempt…

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  • Don't Look Now

    Don't Look Now

    “It’s something that obsesses me: the idea of where, how we approach, and where we finally reach our personal death scenes. Nowadays, when people talk of the Gothic cinema, they’re really talking about camp. It’s very sad, because the Gothic is a tremendous cultural influence, not a funny thing at all.”
    —Nicolas Roeg

    A LONG-TIME cameraman (since 1947) on some unique projects, Petulia for Dick Lester and The Masque of the Red Death for Roger Corman, Nicolas Roeg is an…

  • To Be or Not to Be

    To Be or Not to Be

    Now that Congress is leaving Hollywood alone to make war movies, the only question is when there is going to be a good one. For war comedy, Ernst Lubitsch’s “To Be or Not to Be” is mildly amusing. The story is complex as hell, but undoubtedly has to do with the adventures of a Polish Shakespearean troupe and the German Gestapo during the fall of Poland. There is a lot of maneuvering of people and scenes to get laughs which…