The Great Claude Chabrol (1930 - 2010)

This month the world lost a brilliant artist. One of the original of the French New Wave and easily the most commercial of the bunch. Some might think that a sort of slam, but creating commercial films allowed Chabrol to better bring his political and socio-political points of view to the masses. All of his films radiated a subversive, radical and immediate call for change in society as we know it. And, he did this without ever sacrificing the art of cinema.
Early in his career which is filled with over 70 films, he became known as a sort of French Hitchcock with a twist. The suspense of his films is undeniable, but just when you expect the very worst to happen — Chabrol normally replaces “horror” with the simple shock of truth.
The truth of his work and his admiration for exceptional camera work and respect for truly great actors sear into the viewer’s minds. No matter how old his films might be — they hold a still valid mirror to our world. And, that mirror is cracked. Chabrol always seem to identify with the Communist Ideals, but his films were filled with an obvious mistrust of human nature. His characters (and their stories) are always presented for what they are. Seldom are the actions of these characters fully explained. Unlike most filmmakers, Chabrol challenged his audience to think.

The film that put M. Isabelle Huppert on the map and many collaborations would follow...

Interestingly, I think it is his later work starting in the 70’s that fully expressed his gifts as an artist. Unlike most artists, old age did not dim his view of humanity or society. In my opinion some of his final films were his most powerful. It is hard to wipe away the images and off-kilter humor and ultimate horror of these two films:

A severe judgement written in stone. This brutal film may be his finest hour...

Despite the lame US poster, this film explored the pathetic traps our society creates for women...

But, my personal favorite Chabrol film is MERCI POUR LE CHOCOLAT. Huppert, who seemed to serve as a sort of muse for Chabrol, has never been better cast. And, it is sheer brilliance of the surprise that this quiet little film’s most powerful scene is played at the very tail end of the movie as the credits roll.

Mysterious, comical, slick, sick and a simply perfect film...

There will never be another talent like that of Claude Chabrol. A vital, valid and valuable artist until the very end. He never lost his bite or twisted sense of humor — nor did he ever lose his youthful struggle against the tide of an unjust society/world. If you’re not familiar with his work, you should be. The posters I selected or just a few exceptional examples of his work, but he seldom misfired.

An examination of marriage and the horror of jealousy...

Claude Chabrol Rest In Peace. He will not be forgotten by those of us who love cinema and the power it can generate.

“I’m not pessimistic about people in general, but only about the way they live.”
“I love mirrors. They let one pass through the surface of things.”
Claude Chabrol

Claude Chabrol: A Cinematic Genius...

“I brought the film like a flower to the world.”
Claude Chabrol

September 22, 2010. Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Uncategorized. Leave a comment.


one of isabelle's new movies which has yet to open in the US! ugh! great poster, tho!

one of isabelle's new movies which has yet to open in the US! ugh! great poster, tho!

Well, it has been far too long since last I posted a blog entry. Actually, it has been far too long since I’ve last been on the computer. But, now, I attempt to return to some order of a life starting today. At least I hope so! I suppose I should bring anyone who might still be stopping by my site up to speed on the events of my “life” — Let’s see.

To be honest, I have been quite busy. Seems that there has been much time required for me to sit in dark corners focusing on refining my confusion, depression, lack of sleep, nightmares, and general inability to function. Basically, it is time spent huddled in a dark corner quietly weeping while my iPod struggles to not run out of battery power.

Not to say that I’ve been totally consumed by required time in the dark corner. Dear, no! There are other pressing issues that drive me out of my dim little corner. …For a while these were mainly dental worries.

dental-bridgeWhile my incredibly talented brother was visiting I fell prey to horrid dental pain. Thank goodness B found an awesome dentist who basically saved my life. I had to take anti-biotic and was given a pain killer before anything could be done. The pain killer really worked like magic. Unfortunately, it made me more than a little “tipsy’ and I worry that I made a junkie sort of impression on my brother’s way-cool and beautiful girlfriend. They both kept telling me that it was fun to hang with me, but I worry that the lamp shade and toilet plunger incident was a bit too much.

Anyway, the tooth issue was quite bad.  Scary infection(s) resulting in the extraction of my two lower front teeth. I looked like the kid with the banjo in DELIVERANCE. …deliverance-dueling-banjo-with-hillbilly-close-up-smiling-702353

Sadly, the banjo-pickin’ skills do not come with missing front teeth — just an odd sort of lisp.

Two cool things did result:

1. My dental bridge! Aside from being one of the sweetest people I’ve met with two incredibly cool assistants, she is an absolute artist! My new teeth look better than any of my other teeth and yet she managed to blend them in!

2. Pain killers sort of numbed my general worries for a while and made me realize that all problems in life might be solved if we could all walk around with morphine drips. I could be wrong, but I seriously doubt it.

Of course, there are future dental worries to be addressed later this year. It could be that another tooth might require extraction and I believe I need to have two or three root canals to be re-done and a crown replaced. If it didn’t feel a bit “alien” I would enjoy having my entire tooth selection bridged. Tho, this experience does make me wonder how our elders ever really dealt with dentures. I mean, you don’t realize it — but one does feel with their teeth. Odd, that. Oh, and before you suggest it, implants are not an option for me. Not enough bone or something. …who took my bone?

All my time in the dark corner and essentially no doing much thanks to this hell they call PSTD — I have somehow managed to get to the correct weight. But, I think the lack of activitiy is resulting in the fact that I am skinny-fat. I don’t mind being skinny, but I must draw the line at skinny-fatness. It is odd. I need to find some sort of pulley system that will allow me to work out without falling down. Adding that to my list right now!

Oh, and can I just share something with the world that is really annoying? …And, kids, be prepared it will eventually happen to all of you. Why o why must pubic hair turn to odd shades of gray?!?!!? Isn’t it bad enough that we must suffer gray on our heads and in our beards?!?!? …now the odd gray hairs show up on the toilet privates. Not cool.

And, none of my issues has been helped by the fact that Isabelle Huppert’s films from last year have yet to play in the US! Color me even more annoyed and distressed. However, there is a new Barbra LP coming for end of September! And, I have been enjoying the new Tori Amos LP — even if it isn’t really all that new in style/sound. I still like it. But, please! Let me see Isabelle’s new movies!

i know i am probably one of the gayest men on the planet, but i could just stare at Ms. Huppert for days on end. So cool!

i know i am probably one of the gayest men on the planet, but i could just stare at Ms. Huppert for days on end. So cool!

Oh, and regarding my self-published book:  odd experience.  …even tho, I ‘ve kept a blog for years and have always been upfront about my life — the book brings it to another level.  I didn’t expect that. I also did not expect it to sell. I just felt the need to do it. What has happened is that it has sold more than I thought it ever would — tho, not that much mind you.

My worry is that it will sell just enough so that I put my disabilty payments in jeopardy.  I really can’t work right now and I have no idea when I will get to the point when I can return to any sort of nomral functional capacity. I’ve a new therapist and it sure appears that I’ve a long way to go.  Anyway, the book brought up more than a few things for me. I hadn’t expected that either.

Donut Holes  (my book of sticky pieces of fictionalized realities)

Donut Holes (my book of sticky pieces of fictionalized realities)

I’m just going to roll with it and try not to worry. I figure what with oddly color’d pubic hairs sprouting about I have enough to contend with! Right? Thank you for the affirmation.

Another odd thing about my book is that when I have googled it I have discovered that it is being sold off of websites in the UK, Canada and Germany. …It looks like these sites are somehow linked into Also, there is this web site devoted to newly published short story collections that wants to review my book on their site. So, why not? …but, what if they really hate it and point out the really stupid “type-O”s that crept into the final print!?!?

Sigh. Once again, I will just roll with it. One really can’t be bothered by this sort of thing when dealing with graying pubes.

Well, I shall close this post as I do want to catch up with the blog world I know and love. Once I do that I will pet Little Bagel and Lola — and, then, return to my dark corner for several hours of uncontrolable weeping and moaning.

love and kisses,


July 6, 2009. Tags: , , , , , , , . Uncategorized. 6 comments.