Now With More Than 3000 Reviews! Go Nuts - Read 'Em All!!

WELCOME! Use the search engines on this site (or your own off-site engine of choice) to gain easy access to the complete MAKSQUIBS Archive; over 2500 posts and counting. (New posts added every day or so.)

You can check on all our titles by typing the Title, Director, Actor or 'Keyword' of your choice in the Search Engine of your choice (include the phrase MAKSQUIBS) or just use the BLOGGER Search Box at the top left corner of the page.

Feel free to place comments directly on any of the film posts and to test your film knowledge with the CONTESTS scattered here & there. (Hey! No Googling allowed. They're pretty easy.)

Send E-mails to MAKSQUIBS@yahoo.com . (Let us know if the TRANSLATE WIDGET works!) Or use the Profile Page or Comments link for contact.

Thanks for stopping by.

Thursday, October 22, 2009

THE MYSTERY OF PICASSO (1956)


Pablo Picasso after WWII: Spent force living off past achievements (see Simon Schama; et al.) or Still the most vital artist of the last century (see Tony Richardson; et al.)? Henri-Georges Clouzot’s po-faced documentary, which concentrates on live painting rather than the painter, supplies arguments for each side of the debate. Clouzot, best-known for WAGES OF FEAR/'52 and DIABOLIQUE/'55, is content to stand back as cinematic witness letting Picasso work & rework a score of paintings directly for the camera. And for much of the film, we see a doodler of genius. (Or perhaps a genius doodling.) A man selling his name, not his art. But things change dramatically in the last three reels when a sketch of a goat’s head captures Picasso’s full attention. After this, the screen, which has already shifted from b&w to color, opens up from Academy ration to CinemaScope and the compositions come blazingly to life. There’s a lot of fun in seeing elements of Matisse and (who knew?) Chagall briefly appear only to be swept away as the canvas finds itself; and it’s a joyous treat to see Picasso find himself as he goes along.

No comments: