Watch movies, write movies

In the past two years, I have made some film director selections based on film retrospectives and birthday commemorations: Chaplin and Kieslowski curated at the Beijing Film Festival last year, Lubitsch and 90th anniversary of this year’s 130th birthday. Anniversary of the birth of Tarkovsky.

By choosing topics to review the past, complete the film list, read related books and papers, and turn hobbies into workloads, it is really luxurious and wonderful. Chaplin’s films are brimming with timeless humour, and it’s a natural pleasure to watch; watching Lubitsch’s films, I’m also laughing at the witty quips between men and women 90 years ago. When Kieslowski, in his talk book, seriously explores that the subject of his films is about individuals rather than politics, he says he struggled to find answers to questions: Why do people ride bicycles in the morning? Why go to bed at night? Why get up again? Very amiable.

Watching “Tarkovsky Diaries” this time, I also gained a lot of cuteness. Laota admired Bergman very much, and in his diary on January 7, he wrote: “I heard that there was an interview with Bergman somewhere, and he thought I was the best director today, even better than Fellini (?!) I’ll have to check where, in what paper, when. I don’t really believe it. It doesn’t sound like it.” So true.

If I choose too many topics of this kind, I will feel a little guilty. I am addicted to the literary and artistic works that have passed away, and I do not focus on the more important news of the moment, and I do not face, digest, and transmit new information. It seems to be an escape. Another emotion is anxiety in the face of documentation. For example, Tarkovsky, although there are only seven feature films and one short film, but because of his phenomenal status in China (partly thanks to the petty bourgeoisie cafe “Carving Time” with the same name as his anthology), his Diaries, collections of pictures, books on films, and scholarly research have all been translated and introduced into China.

On the one hand, I feel that I have spent too long in the material, and on the other hand, I feel that the material will never be read, and I am worried that I will misread it because I am not professional enough, and then I will make a mistake. When I was writing the manuscript, I was also caught in the data, and I did not maintain a clear perspective of the bystander. After the first draft was handed over, the editor found that many places were confusing to read. After communicating with the editor, I revised it item by item and wrote it clearly and clearly, and I felt a lot better.

As for guilt, one of the things I often think about is, what else might these topics mean to others? Writing this can not help but do some self-convincing. Watching Chaplin’s “Modern Times” in the Geological Auditorium, Charlie, who was covered in oil stains on the assembly line, kept turning screws, stuck in huge gears and couldn’t stop working; in the end, he was alienated by the overloaded work and had a mental breakdown. Scenes like this make me think that even in the present, these works should still resonate with people who are busy with meaningless work. Kieslowski’s entire creative career was in the Soviet period, but his “Blue”, “White” and “Red” trilogy points to freedom, equality and fraternity. At that time, he was criticized by the industry because his films did not reflect the political environment and dramatic changes of the time. But he said that even when Poland was in chaos and anarchy, he was not thinking about politics, but the everyday life of ordinary people: nervousness, disillusionment, living without knowing why. There were three paths for Polish filmmakers at that time: either not to make films, or to make approved films, or to make love or nature. But he chose the fourth rule, trying to understand ordinary people.

Tarkovsky has been tormented for more than two decades as a director, spending much of his time battling the unseen. Scholar Wang Yao mentioned in his lectures and interviews that Tarkovsky was a cultural hero: what we thought could not be done, Lao Ta did it.

At the end of Wang Yao’s lecture, a screenshot of “Nostalgia” near the end of the film was released on the huge screen in Hall 1 of the Archives: Gorchakov guarded the flame of the candle and tried to cross the dry pool. “So, there is still hope.” Wang Yao said with a smile. The audience laughed too. As an ordinary person with weak willpower and action, this kind of encouragement is very useful to me.

In the process of reading Tarkovsky’s Diary, I excerpted a passage with similar strength: “It is true that the compass of human freedom has evil on one side and good on the other. But I have never heard that there are Whoever struggles to stand up and slips while retreating. To stand up must fight.”

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