Saturday, October 24, 2009

curious about curious

years ago, i watched I AM CURIOUS YELLOW a 1967 genre mixing swedish film that combines frank sexual politics, gender roles, and fiercely political socialist rhetoric. i must admit that i initially rented it because i heard about the boatloads of nudity and sex in it. it was one of the first major films to depict sexuality in such a way and i was curious (har har). the film is not a sexy one and at times is very dull and if youre not interested in gender roles and socialism, then this movie is not for you.

luckily, i am.

the star of the film lena nyman delivers one of the bravest performances in film history. her frank sexuality and openness with her body was remarkable for 1967 and director vilgot sjoman managed to create a film that was marketed as pornographic but is way more political than anything else. it even features a quick interview with martin luther king, jr about his views on civil disobidience! for a film that a lot of people initially wanted to watch for tits, this is a pretty big departure.

despite all this admiration i had for this blue, i didnt really enjoy it very much. flashforward ahead 2 years later and i watched THIS IS CURIOUS BLUE, the follow-up film done the year after. its a continuation of the ideals and politicisizing of the first time but with a decidedly more bitter and ironic tone. to be honest, i really preferred this one.

with both of the films, there are elements are staged documentary and filmed sequences and in this one the film between fiction and non-fiction was blurrier. my favorite scene was a staged conversation betweeen sjoman and lena about wavering committment to the film. it was a staged scene but the feel was so natural and completely shatters the fourth wall of cinema.

there are even some michael moore-like displays of civil disobidience and literally tearing down the walls of western political society in favor of a socialist regime. BRILLIANT! any idea what i just said? no well...ummm...lena nyman is naked a bunch of times again. believe me, you see everything. open and spread-bare political rhetoric and all!