Tom and Summer
Not many titles watched this week, but we’re still left with a concentrated dose.

For starters, it was a three-screening week, and two of those three made up a double-feature. Last Tuesday, I ventured out to Lightbox for a dinnertime showing of Barbara Stanwyck in BABY FACE. I wasn’t all that sure what to expect in sitting down for this pre-code selection, mostly because my experience with pre-code is fairly limited. I have no idea what was being shown and seen in films prior to Mister Hays writing the rulebook, so I didn’t know whether to expect complete debauchery or mild allusion.

As it happened, BABY FACE fell somewhere in-between. Nothing overt, but no punches pulled either.

There was something disquieting about watching Stanwyck’s character unabashedly sleep her way up the corporate ladder, but at the same time, there was no denying how much gratification comes from watching a woman raise her social standing by exploiting a Neitzche theorem.

After BABY FACE, I had time to grab a cup of tea and return to the same cinema for a showing of Michael Mann’s THIEF. It held no connection at all to BABY FACE, except that seeing both films in a theatrical environment brought upon great joy.

Coming to the work of Mann when I did, THIEF happens to be the film in his canon that I am the least familiar with by far…so in some ways, this felt a lot like watching it for the first time.

Spending as much time as I have with Mann’s films over the last few weeks, I think what I love most about them is the way they seem to feel so connected even though the looks and fashions continue to change. For instance, the music and clothing in THIEF are undeniably ’80’s (was there a film in the decade that Tangerine Dream didn’t score?), but the structure and feel of the film is a perfect match for what Mann did with HEAT in the 90’s, or MIAMI VICE in this century.

Both films were a treat to see on the big screen, especially back-to-back…so I guess what I’m saying is that if you ever get a chance to see selections like these in a cinema, do so…even if you’ve seen them before.


Here’s the week at hand…


BABY FACE – Precode Stanwyck on a big screen. Pure bliss.
THIEFWith only one film left in the Mann series, I fear I’ll soon miss my weekly dose of neon and sodium vapour.
CINDERELLA – Charming! More on this tomorrow.

Streaming/Blu-Rays/DVD’s I’ve Never Seen
WINTER LIGHT – The idea is to finish the year more Bergman-literate.
PRIDE AND PREJUDICE (1940) – Wanna piss off an Austen fan? Watch this version with them in the room.
THE 5000 FINGERS OF DR. T – Why don’t they make gems like this anymore?


Boxscore for The Year
49 First-Timers, 37 Re-Watched
18 Screenings
86 Movies in Total
How’s about you – seen anything good?