The Other Side of the Wind (Orson Welles, 2018)

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Persona
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Re: The Other Side of the Wind (Orson Welles, 2018)

#226 Post by Persona » Fri Aug 31, 2018 12:47 pm

Robert Abele's take is probably my favorite so far:

https://www.thewrap.com/the-other-side-o...s-netflix/

This is gonna be such a fun and fascinating film to dissect, especially for hardcore Welles fans.

I think there might be some awards consideration for Legrand's score and maybe the editing, from what I've heard. But more than likely it will be Roma that is Netflix's heavy awards player this year.

edit: just saw Altair's post, which mine is a bit redundant to. I agree, Altair!

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FrauBlucher
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Re: The Other Side of the Wind (Orson Welles, 2018)

#227 Post by FrauBlucher » Mon Sep 03, 2018 6:25 am


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J Wilson
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Re: The Other Side of the Wind (Orson Welles, 2018)

#228 Post by J Wilson » Mon Sep 03, 2018 11:18 am

I can see some kind of special recognition or editing award for this; otherwise, it's still too out there for modern audiences to care about, and the misogyny and other politically incorrect material will alienate plenty of people these days. Plus, the film-within-a-film sequences will bore the shit out of a lot of people.


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Persona
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Re: The Other Side of the Wind (Orson Welles, 2018)

#230 Post by Persona » Tue Sep 04, 2018 5:43 pm

It's funny because all through his analysis he does a good job of making the film sound immensely interesting and engaging, but then at the very end there he's just kind of like, "But I'm disappointed." He did give some reasoning, of course, but it feels squashed under all the commentary before that only makes me want to see the movie.

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The Elegant Dandy Fop
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Re: The Other Side of the Wind (Orson Welles, 2018)

#231 Post by The Elegant Dandy Fop » Tue Sep 04, 2018 10:54 pm

I love Bordwell so much and he's one of the few people who's opinion is worth a damn. I'm curious to see how it grows (or doesn't) on him over time.

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Roger Ryan
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Re: The Other Side of the Wind (Orson Welles, 2018)

#232 Post by Roger Ryan » Wed Sep 05, 2018 8:16 am

Bordwell's is an excellent analysis, but if he really spent his first viewing counting individual shots (over 2,300, apparently), that might have impinged on his enjoyment!

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domino harvey
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Re: The Other Side of the Wind (Orson Welles, 2018)

#233 Post by domino harvey » Wed Sep 05, 2018 11:19 am

That's what he does for all movies he sees, it's a little clicker like ushers used to have-- I imagine it's second nature to him by now and has no impact during any specific film viewing experience

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MichaelB
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Re: The Other Side of the Wind (Orson Welles, 2018)

#234 Post by MichaelB » Wed Sep 05, 2018 11:28 am

It’s like taking notes in the dark - I’ve been doing it for so long that it’s second nature. And I’ve only written over an existing page of notes once.

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Roger Ryan
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Re: The Other Side of the Wind (Orson Welles, 2018)

#235 Post by Roger Ryan » Wed Sep 05, 2018 11:58 am

Then I will only suggest that the pain in his thumb (from clicking throughout a film with such a stupendously high shot rate) might have unconsciously contributed to his disappointment!

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FrauBlucher
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Re: The Other Side of the Wind (Orson Welles, 2018)

#236 Post by FrauBlucher » Wed Sep 05, 2018 5:31 pm

What’s his purpose to count shots?

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Michael Kerpan
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Re: The Other Side of the Wind (Orson Welles, 2018)

#237 Post by Michael Kerpan » Wed Sep 05, 2018 5:58 pm

FrauBlucher wrote:
Wed Sep 05, 2018 5:31 pm
What’s his purpose to count shots?
Among other things -- to figure out average shot length...

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reaky
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Re: The Other Side of the Wind (Orson Welles, 2018)

#238 Post by reaky » Wed Sep 05, 2018 6:13 pm

I’m sure Othello has a high shot count (of necessity, given the nature of shooting - maybe something it has in common with OSOTHW). Macbeth, by contrast, is full of Ambersons-style long takes, and I find that style much more typically Wellesian.

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whaleallright
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Re: The Other Side of the Wind (Orson Welles, 2018)

#239 Post by whaleallright » Wed Sep 05, 2018 11:14 pm

Welles was interested in both long takes and fast cutting from the very beginning (and the latter dominates his later films), so neither can really be said to be any more "typically Wellesian" than the other.

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diamonds
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Re: The Other Side of the Wind (Orson Welles, 2018)

#240 Post by diamonds » Mon Sep 24, 2018 1:24 pm

Trailer for They'll Love Me When I'm Dead, a documentary on the making of The Other Side of the Wind. Bogdanovich is trembling in the clips; completing this film must be overwhelming for him. (And his quote about happy endings is just about the saddest thing knowing what happened with Dorothy Stratten).

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Roger Ryan
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Re: The Other Side of the Wind (Orson Welles, 2018)

#241 Post by Roger Ryan » Mon Sep 24, 2018 2:43 pm

diamonds wrote:
Mon Sep 24, 2018 1:24 pm
...And his quote about happy endings is just about the saddest thing knowing what happened with Dorothy Stratten...
He's paraphrasing something Welles liked to say, but your point stands.

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hearthesilence
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Re: The Other Side of the Wind (Orson Welles, 2018)

#242 Post by hearthesilence » Mon Sep 24, 2018 2:46 pm

diamonds wrote:
Mon Sep 24, 2018 1:24 pm
Trailer for They'll Love Me When I'm Dead, a documentary on the making of The Other Side of the Wind. Bogdanovich is trembling in the clips; completing this film must be overwhelming for him. (And his quote about happy endings is just about the saddest thing knowing what happened with Dorothy Stratten).
Lincoln Center is screening this on Saturday followed by a panel moderated by Martin Scorsese and Kent Jones that will include Frank Marshall, Filip Jan Rymsza, Peter Bogdanovich, Bob Murawski, and Morgan Neville. Tix are $25, and $20 for students.

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hearthesilence
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Re: The Other Side of the Wind (Orson Welles, 2018)

#243 Post by hearthesilence » Sat Sep 29, 2018 8:56 pm

Just came back from NYFF and saw this. Martin Scorsese, Frank Marshall, Filip Jan Rymsza, Peter Bogdanovich, Bob Murawski, and Morgan Neville stayed for a discussion after having done so for They’ll Love Me When I’m Dead. Danny Huston was a nice surprise, he was up where the filmmakers stand at the end of the film and said some kind words later - apparently when they needed ADR for the late John Huston, they were fortunate that Danny does a great impression of his father.

Bob Murawski apparently knew Graver - he lived down the block from him and knew him primarily as the guy who did exploitation films (mostly horror films, judging by the titles he listed), but Graver told him about the work he was doing on Welles's film and even showed him some footage. At one point Bob mentioned that there's an AFI interview where Welles is trying to raise money and said the film was 98% done, and so he told Filip "hey if we find that work print, we'll be close to finished" but of course they never found it - i.e. as anyone will tell you, if you say a film is 98% done instead of, say, 20% done, you have an easier time finding investors who'll listen. Scorsese asked about a scene in the car, and Bob mentioned it was one of the fine-cut scenes left by Welles - apparently most of the fine-cut material was the movie within the movie and it was almost as if Welles was more interested in that rather than the A-story according to Bob.

It was mentioned that a bathroom scene in the film was much "filthier" in terms of footage that was shot, and Bob was sort of the decisive voice in saying "NO, that's too much." Peter (I'm going to use first names, it's easier to type) also mentioned that Oja was far more open about sex than Welles, who really was embarrassed about such matters. He would turn red even when she spoke about it in Croatian, because even though he didn't know the language, he knew what she was talking about it. So the sexual material in the film came from her. When it was mentioned that she deserved a co-writing credit because she brought a lot to the film, Peter added "especially for the sexuality," prompting quite a bit of laughter even though he meant it in seriousness.

Peter of course had stories but these were hilarious stories. It was mentioned that Welles was nice to his actors but REALLY tough on the crew. One time, Frank told him it was time for lunch because they had been working for so long, so Welles said, "okay, fine, I'M not hungry, but they can go eat." When the producers reconsidered, he said, "no, no, let them eat, but I'M not hungry." Then Welles looks at Peter, who sheepishly says, "well, I'm not really hungry," and Welles quickly adds, "PETER and *I* will stay here and work!" Then 5 minutes after everyone's gone, Welles says, "you getting hungry? Because I could really use something to eat." So then they go to a kitchen, raid a giant size bag of Frito Lay chips, and as they're standing there chewing on the chips, Welles says to him, "if no one sees you eat, you don't gain any weight."

Peter says the only direction he ever got for the film was when they're in the car, and Welles told him, "it's just us."

They talk about how Welles cons EVERYONE when making a movie - which is hysterical if you hear the Film Forum talk that Keith Baxter gave on Chimes at Midnight, check it out on their website. He does the same with Rich Little, who said he only had a few weekends off and winds up staying for a year. His performance doesn't work out and that's how Peter gets cast. When he arrives with suitcases of his clothes, Welles picks out Peter's costume from his clothes, and he says "wow, those are my clothes, but I've never worn them in that combination before." Welles says, "well now you know how a director SHOULD dress."

When he meets John Huston, Huston asks how many films has he acted in, and Peter says "just one." Huston then says, "That's not many." And in the background Welles would laugh "HAHA ,'that's not many!'" which apparently he did over and over again whenever Huston made a crack because Welles thought he was so hilarious. (Huston also left the production temporarily to do The Man Who Would Be King, which is impressive.)

Earlier, Welles also struggled with his decision to cast Huston, indignantly telling Peter "Why should I give him that part? (follows up immediately with) Because he's so right for it, that's why!"

Anyway, the film is pretty much what I'd expected (not predicted - had little knowledge of the actual content). As you all know, Welles changed his filmmaking out of necessity (i.e. lower budgets and smaller resources) and focused more on the editing. So not surprisingly, this film builds on the advances of F for Fake. It's very difficult to judge the film on this basis because Welles executed a good chunk of it and left a blueprint, but Bob did a lot of work afterwards. So it's very possible we're looking at something that would've seemed incredibly radical and too ahead of its time in 1980 (I'm certain it would've bewildered a lot of people then), but at the same time, it's very possible this feeling is enhanced by an editor who's flourished in an era when similar innovations have become common.

It can only be a Welles film, that's for sure - the way they stack the dialogue is unique to Welles and instantly recognizable as his work. It's very dense - the film almost never breathes. The style is so bold it moves like a "young man's" film, but it feels like the work of a very old man - Scorsese called it distressing even though it was invigorating to see but I told a friend beforehand that it felt depressing. I mentioned that you didn't want to view a film as an autobiography (and the same phrase was uttered twice later on during the discussion, which was amusing), but I thought it was reasonable to see it as a reflection of how Welles saw his world and himself as a filmmaker at this point in his life, and it was thoroughly sad in that respect.

It's not a perfectly realized work, but if one defines a masterpiece as a work that can only be done by a master artist, then this film probably qualifies.

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Persona
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Re: The Other Side of the Wind (Orson Welles, 2018)

#244 Post by Persona » Sun Sep 30, 2018 9:12 am

What a wonderful share, hearthesilence, thank you!

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Drucker
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Re: The Other Side of the Wind (Orson Welles, 2018)

#245 Post by Drucker » Sun Sep 30, 2018 10:47 am

Yes thank you HTS! Sounds like what we'll see will confirm many of the expectations of those who are devotees already, but still will be wonderful to experience. I have tickets for the screening on the 10th.

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Re: The Other Side of the Wind (Orson Welles, 2018)

#246 Post by bearcuborg » Sun Sep 30, 2018 3:50 pm

Image

hearthesilence Thanks for the reminder, I was there too. I wish I had known, I would have said hello, it's always fun to meet a forum member.

Were you as emotional as I was at the end of They'll Miss Me When I'm Dead? I was overcome with sadness, not only for Orson but also for Graver.

So about the documentary, I wasn't crazy about Alan Cumming, as it felt unnecessary, but he did sound an awful lot like James Mason for what it's worth. I must say that documentary gave Orson's final years some clarity, as it confronts the myth of Orson abandoning projects. Orson once said that if one wants a happy ending, it depends where you stop telling the story, but for Gary and Orson it was a sad and frustrating ending, with so many missed opportunities.

As for The Other Side of the Wind, first - I don't know how a Netflix audience will respond to it, other than turning it off. For anyone not familiar with Welles, it seems that the documentary is a crucial prologue.

I agree with Scorsese, the movie is distressing, and even with some exhilarating moments, I felt trapped. A lot of the party sequence reminded me of Touch of Evil, with extreme close ups, particularly when Janet Leigh is attacked in the motel. Thats how a lot of the movie made me feel. It's also a sad story, and given the state of the unfinished projects, its like the end of everything. But his art lives on, and perhaps that's the best thing one can say about the movie. You can see some F for Fake in the the language of the cutting, and the movie within the movie definitely feels like Zabriske Point, with some Maya Deren in it maybe. Maybe Orson was sending up Robert Altman too, I don't know...

There are some really strong performances, Norman Foster in particular, and Mercedes McCambridge too. With that said, all the shades of Orson's life (fascinating, frustrating, comedic, and tragic) are reflected in the movie, and in John Huston's character. There's some agonizing scenes where Huston is practically begging Peter Bogdonvich for help, where I couldn't help but think of the documentary - particularly the AFI tribute where Orson fails to raise a single dime.

I'm eager to discuss some of the plot points, but I don't want to spoil anything. I will say that at the end of the documentary Orson is asked about the current shape of The Other Side of the Wind, and he mentions that picture might evolve to a point where it's the filmmakers talking about the movie they made...fully becoming the mokumentary I think it most resembles.

Orson Welles to Andre Bazin in 1958
...it is essential for every responsible artist to cultivate the ground that has been left fallow… I don’t do this out of a spirit of contradiction, I don’t want to counter what has been done; I just want to occupy an unoccupied terrain and work there.
This came to mind as I couldn't really think of anything like it at that time. One knows what Orson is talking about when seeing this movie. In fact, one of the editors who worked on this release mentioned it being the first found footage movie. Personally, having worked with an Movieola and on Avid, it's incredible to think that the technology had not caught up to his vision - he became an incredible editor late in life.

hearthesilence really covered a lot of the good stuff from the day at Alice Tully, but I'll share one he didn't... There's an extraordinary scene from the movie that Hannaford is making, and it runs about 7mins. Scorsese asked the editors if that was all completed when they got the footage, and they said it was, that Orson had left them a super fine cut, to which Scrosese replied, "not bad."

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Re: The Other Side of the Wind (Orson Welles, 2018)

#247 Post by Cameron Swift » Mon Oct 01, 2018 12:07 am

bearcuborg wrote:
Sun Sep 30, 2018 3:50 pm
As for The Other Side of the Wind, first - I don't know how a Netflix audience will respond to it, other than turning it off. For anyone not familiar with Welles, it seems that the documentary is a crucial prologue.
Is the documentary an insight into the making of this film and all of the work done to get it to screen or is it more of an overall focus on Welles himself? Would you say it's better to watch the film or the doc first?

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Re: The Other Side of the Wind (Orson Welles, 2018)

#248 Post by bearcuborg » Mon Oct 01, 2018 7:47 am

It’s a bit more of the former, but it certainly covers a bit of the later too. I would say seeing this first definitely helped.

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Roger Ryan
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Re: The Other Side of the Wind (Orson Welles, 2018)

#249 Post by Roger Ryan » Mon Oct 01, 2018 8:49 am

Thanks for the reportage; it's very much appreciated!

Welles always wanted a topical angle to his non-historical films (updating the unfilmed Heart of Darkness to address the rise of fascism in the late 30s; the use of actual death camp footage, shot only weeks earlier, in The Stranger) and The Other Side of the Wind was no exception - it was conceived as a cutting edge exploration/parody of the "New Hollywood" and European art house tropes. But, by 1978 or 1979, Welles must have realized his film was no longer topical; that he had missed the moment. I believe this is why he started to re-conceptualize what he had shot as a documentary of the making (or the "unmaking") of Wind. For a number of years after Welles' death, there was a lot of talk about that kind of documentary (like Neville has produced) being the only logical way to show the Wind footage, but I'm glad Marshall, Bogdanovich, and Rymsza stuck to the idea of completing it as Welles originally conceived it in the early 70s. Enough time has passed that the film can be a historical one with no need to be topical (although some of its echoes can still be felt today).

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domino harvey
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Re: The Other Side of the Wind (Orson Welles, 2018)

#250 Post by domino harvey » Mon Oct 01, 2018 11:39 am

I know people like to mock the more starfucker-y aspects of Bogdanovich, but how can you not love every one of those stories hearthesilence relayed?

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