"Life Long Learners"

My 90 year old grandfather not only still works as a film editor, but also runs a film group called "Life Long Learners." For fifteen years a group of senior citizens have gathered together to watch and discuss movies picked by my "g-unit." This doesn't mean I'm planning on doing Movie Mondays till I'm 90, but it is definitely inspiring. The first clip is a typical film group meeting (editing by my dear grandpa) and the other video is so that everyone can get an idea of what they're like.


Le Samouraï - Presented by Zach Poncher

"Alain Delon stars as Jeff Costello, an assassin who lives a solitary life with no friends. Costello begins his new assignment stealing a car, obtaining new license plates and a gun from his associate. After accidentally being seen by Valerie (Cathy Rosier), the police pick up Costello and with the investigation led by a determined Police Inspector (Francois Perier), and subject him and many others to a line up. Once released with a strong alibi, Costello must stay one step ahead of both the Police Inspector and his employer.

This movie is the epitome of "badass" with style and suspense." -Zach

Reminder: Gates of Heaven- June 29th

Not to be confused with Heaven's Gate—whose six hour version should be shown in the future—Gates of Heaven will be showing at my house this coming Monday. Email me to get the address at augustafwind@gmail.com. I really hope everyone can come because no one should miss out on this. If a lot of people like it then we'll do a Errol Morris series. Robert Ebert said it was one of of the ten best films of ALL TIME.


Werner Herzog, GREAT German director, said that he would eat his shoe if this movie (Gates of Heaven) was completed and shown in theaters. Soon after Gates of Heaven's release, good ol' Herzog consumed his shoe which was shot and made into a movie called Werner Herzog Eats His Shoe.

I'm sure many of you want to see the movie of Werner Herzog eats a shoe so I attached it below.

For you impatient folks, you can jump to 2:00 in and watch him eat it.

Tribute to Jerry Harvey

jerry harvey Pictures, Images and Photos
Even though Jerry Harvey shot himself and his wife, after re-watching Z Chanel: A Magnificent Obsession, it seemed like a perfect subject for the us. Jerry Harvey (1949-1988) was a screenwriter who was best known for his film programming of the pre-HBO cable movie channel called "Z." He gave films a second chance by showing the 'directors cuts', a term that was made popular by Z Channel, which were often 6 hour versions of movies like Heaven's Gate, The Leopard, 1900, Das Boot, Once Upon A Time In America, and Bad Timing. Z Channel influences people like Robert Altman, Quentin Tarantino, and Jim Jarmusch as well as 100,000 other subscribing film buffs. Even as a suicidal manic murderer, the guy had great taste.

I don't know how many people are open to 6 hours at my house, but we're definitely doing a Z Channel Tribute series.

I do know that we'll be watching a favorite of Harvey's and mine, called Le Magnifique.

The trailer is here!

Jean-Paul Belmondo and Jacqueline Bisset are in it.

Vote on the next screening! William Klein Edition.

I have come into the possession of a Criterion Collection of William Klein movies, and they all are super good I couldn't decide. Instead of doing "ini-mini-miny-moe", a poll sounded a lot better. Watch the three trailers/clips and write 1,2, or 3 in the comment box depending on which one you want to see! No one will be disappointed!

William Klein was born in NY city but earned his fame in France. That's just about all I can say about him because his flims are the most important part.

1. Who Are You Polly Magoo? "In this excoriating satire of the fashion industry, Polly Maggoo is a 20-year-old Brooklyn-born fashion model in Paris, on the runway at the big shows where magazine editor Ms. Maxwell is the reigning opinion maker. The ridiculous passes for sublime. Polly becomes the subject of an episode of a vapid TV news documentary series called "Qui êtes-vous?" and is pursued by the filmmaker and by the prince of Borodine, a small country in the Soviet bloc. We watch as the documentary is shot, we await Polly's arrival in the principality, we observe a lunch in the suburbs, and we learn of her childhood. Is there more to Polly than her pretty face? Is anything below the surface?"
I had to tear up the internet to find an actual trailer of this movie which can be seen here

2. The Model Couple "The French Ministry of the Future announces that it has computer-selected a so-called "average" French couple, Jean-Michel and Claudine (Andre Dussolier and Anemone), and will use what it finds out from them to determine how to manage housing and other government programs in the future. Overnight, they become famous and are subjected to endless questions by government functionaries. Commercial forces interested in using them for marketing research also begin to hound them. The couple is kidnapped just as they begin to rebel against their exploitation. This gives the government just the excuse it needs to drop the whole program, which had begun to develop in some awkward directions." This isn't the best scene in the movie but you'll get an idea of what this is like.

3. Mr. Freedom "Mr. Freedom, a pro-America superhero who fights for God and country by beating, robbing, raping and killing anyone who looks like they might disagree with him. When he hears that France is in danger of falling to the Commies, Mr. Freedom heads overseas to set things right. When the welcome he receives isn't quite as warm as he expected, he gives up hope of steering the French away from the Reds and decides to salvage what he can by destroying the entire country."

Those of you who loved Holy Mountain will love all of these movies!

Sources: Imdb/Fandango

WWMM Special! Chris Marker's La Jetee

Even though the next movie screening is not for about two weeks, thanks to the wonderful internet everyone can watch from the comfort of their own home, or desk, or bed (how ever you do it). The movie below is a 1962 film by respected director Chris Marker. What separates this movie from the others is the technique Marker uses to communicate the post-nuclear/ time travel experimental story. The movie is comprised mostly of still photographs, each beautiful and without dialogue (besides some whispers of German). There is only one live action shot, can you spot it?

This movie is really worth watching so turn off the distractions, get a snack and enjoy this short but sweet movie!

Don't forget to tell what you think in in the comment box below!

COMING UP ON JUNE 29TH- Gates Of Heaven

If anyone likes the movie Best In Show, then they've seen nothing yet.

Holy Mountain - June 1st

Holy Mountain
(1973) by Alejandro Jodorowsky is one of the most visually mind blowing movies out there. An instant cult film to the "spiritually enlightened", including John Lennon and Yoko Ono, Holy Mountain was never given a wide-release. It is hard to imagine a general audience watching a movie with exploding frogs, Jesus smoking a joint with a man missing his appendages, and poop that turns to gold. Nevertheless, everyone should watch it if given a chance.

The trailer is worth watching!

Below are some interesting facts about the movie (could contain some spoilers!).

  • Jodorowsky took LSD for "spiritual exploration" during the making of the movie and he gave psilocybin mushrooms to his actors during the filming of certain scenes.
  • The film is based on "The Ascent of Mt. Carmel" by St. John of the Cross and "Mt. Analogue" by Rene Daumal.

  • Before filming began, director Alejandro Jodorowsky spent a week without sleep under a Zen Master's direction and lived communally with the film's cast for a month.

  • At a projected budget of $1,500,000 (in USA dollars), it was to have been the most expensive Mexican film production to date. The film reportedly cost only half that amount.

  • The crucified animal carcasses were borrowed from a local restaurant, which were then served to customers upon being returned.

  • Jodorowsky recalls that the chameleon and toad circus was difficult to prepare for and film. The toads themselves were hard to dress, as "their urine was like acid," and they'd keep filling up with air and then blowing it out, trying to escape. The chameleons, on the other hand, were incredibly sedate, and the cameraman would have to leave the camera rolling for long periods of time before they'd even flick their tongues or move their eyes.

  • The "tumor" that the priests pull out of the back of the Thief's neck was an octopus the filmmakers purchased at a local market.

  • Much of the sound in the film was improvised by Mexican sound effects specialist Gonzalo Gavira, yet nonetheless gained the admiration of American director William Friedkin, who in turn hired him to do sound work for The Exorcist (1973).
  • During the boating sequence, Jodorowsky had intended to shoot a scene where the group leaps into the ocean to "get in the infinite waters." The cast proceeded to leap in, then promptly began to drown. The crew was so busy trying to rescue them that nothing of the scene ended up being shot.

  • During Axon's hallucination, the battling dogs were indeed real fighting dogs.

  • The movements from the opening scene ritual are actual movements of a Japanese tea ceremony. Jodorowsky states that the girls themselves were not actual actresses, merely two people who "wanted to have a spiritual experience. They were searching for their own truth, the naked truth."
  • George Harrison, himself a big fan of Jodorowksy's work after having seen El topo (1970), was originally up for the role of The Thief, but disagreed with the director over what he considered gratuitous nudity -- particularly, the shot where his anus is bathed. Rather than cast a stand-in, or remove the shot altogether, Jodorowsky stood his ground, prompting Harrison to drop out. Jodorowsky later expressed some regret over this in the Anchor Bay DVD commentary, noting that Harrison's involvement could have exposed the film to an even larger audience.

  • The crew didn't obtain any permits for the shot of the helicopter setting down in the street, merely had an actor in a police uniform shop traffic while they filmed, then proceeded to run off after the shot was complete.

  • During the decapitation scene, the actor actually struck Jodorowsky for real, cutting his neck and nearly killing him. Jodorowsky reflects that had the sword actually been real, he would indeed have been decapitated.
If anyone, including those who have and haven't seen the movie, have any comments or questions, there is a comment box somewhere below.

Sources: here and here