Tuesday, December 16, 2014

She's Beautiful When She's Angry, Magician: The Astonishing Life and Work of Orson Welles

Magician: The Astonishing Life and Work of Orson Welles
She's Beautiful When She's Angry

Quick capsules on two of the week’s new documentaries:

You really get a spring in your step from Mary Dore’s “She’s Beautiful When She’s Angry,” a celebratory chronicle of the pioneers of so-called second-wave feminism in America between 1966 and 1971. It’s amazing to realize how recently in our history entire career paths were closed off to women; equal pay for equal work was unfathomable; sexual harassment was ubiquitous in the workplace; abortions were performed clandestinely or not at all. While the movement saw its share of infighting and missteps (some here label Nixon’s veto of a sweeping child-care package his single most regrettable action), a joyous sense of liberation and sisterhood permeates the film and Dore’s dozens of interviews with participants from Eleanor Holmes Norton to Rita Mae Brown.

Oscar-winning documentarian and perennial Academy montage editor Chuck Workman (full disclosure: I was a high school friend of his filmmaker son Jeremy) gives Orson Welles the straight biodoc treatment – no more critical than an obituary – in “Magician: The Astonishing Life and Work of Orson Welles.” I enjoyed the movie, but wish Workman had included more extended clips from Welles’ films and discussion of their contribution to the cinema. Still, he’s found some highly amusing anecdotes, as many as not from the self-effacing Welles himself in footage from a variety of televised and other interviews.

No comments:

Post a Comment