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La Notte (1961) Directed by Michelangelo Antonioni Easy to parody, impossible to replicate, what Andrew Sarris called “Antoniennui”—glamorous European movie stars composed in tableaux in front of brutalist architecture, speaking past each other in existential aphorisms—can be embraced as a Marxist-influence tract on the alienation of contemporary life or snorted at as chic pretention, equal and opposite visceral reactions to ambitious modern aesthetics which in either case and for better and worse say more about...
Will You Dance With Me? (1984) Directed by Derek Jarman Time is deeply, movingly sunk in Will You Dance With Me?, some early experimental footage Jarman shot for for a film by Ron Peck, over 30 years ago. Snaring early-80s hairdos, dance moves, and smudgey barlight, slowed down to spirited, half-haunting will-o'-the-wisps by his Olympus VHS camcorder, Jarman prowls, queries, and dances across Benjy’s, a gay club in the Mile End district of East London....
Rocco and His Brothers (1960) Directed by Luchino Visconti Visconti's smoldering neorealist epic—clearly an inspiration to Scorsese, from outstanding fight scenes and sibling tension to ominous storefronts and urban throngs, among others—follows the poor Sicilian Parondi family's search for a better life in the northern Italian city of Milan. Instinctively able to navigate the moral complexity of the big city and finesse an obliviously garrulous widowed mother, Alain Delon’s Rocco is a humble altruist. Drafted, he...
Polyester (1981) Directed by John Waters Only Waters would think to combine campy melodrama with huckster gimmickry. That said, he's also the only one to incorporate foot fetishism, glue sniffing, smut peddling, abortions, and (be still, your hearts) former teen heartthrob Tab Hunter. Presented in glorious Odorama, Polyester marks when, as the Prince of Puke himself posits, "Hollywood and my underground met for the first time"—when his greatest commercial successes, which would ultimately jeopardize his standing...

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