Tuesday, July 06, 2010

Cinematic Bookends

It has been argued that Fellini's Satyricon does not fit well in his body of work. Some call it his best and others laugh at that notion. But all agree that this film was not your typical sandal and spear roman epic and is still the best presentation of the pre-christian world ever put to film.

Fellini really captured that time in history that Chesterton labels; "Pan was nothing but panic. Venus was nothing but venereal vice."

The film shows a life devoted to sensation and personal freedom devoid of any transcendent meaning.

This is why GKC also reminds us "Pagans were wiser that paganism; that is why the pagans became Christians."

It took about 1200 years to cleans us of the pagan era as outlined in Chesterton's book on Saint Francis. ushering in the Christian era.

Now, today, many are saying, we are beginning the postchristian era. This I have been trying to deny to no avail because the evidence is so overwhelming. Thus brings us Terry Zwigoff's film, Art School Confidential. Again critics were divided on to whether this is a good film or not but it is an excellent example of the post-christian era (something they do not even notice) and as such it is just as unsettling as Satyricon.

Again, a film that shows a life devoted to sensation and personal freedom coupled with a pursuit of fame and fortune at any cost all devoid of any transcendent meaning. This film also shows the art world today in all its empty chaos. The artists today are still trying to deconstruct something that has been deconstructed a hundred and fifty years ago. They are deconstructing with out any philosophy, understanding or sense of beauty.

The sixties brought us a back-to-nature "pagan" way of life, it's "high point" was Woodstock and then it went ugly very fast. As GKC said, "Whatever natural religion may have had to do with their beginnings, nothing but fiends now inhabited those hollow shrines."

I think both movies should be seen but I warn you it will not be a feel good evening of cinema.
Also Felline is a better film maker and much is lost on the small screen where as Art School Confidential works just as well on the small screen because postchristian ideas and ideals are small.

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