Le Fond de l'air est rouge (A Grin Without a Cat) (The Base of the Air Is Red) - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

Le Fond de l'air est rouge (A Grin Without a Cat) (The Base of the Air Is Red) Reviews

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September 29, 2011
Really good movie about the old New Left and why it tanked.
½ November 26, 2009
A totally different approach to making a film. Some parts artistic, some times political some times educational, yet quite fascinating to watch right through even a 4 hour journey. A huge step by Chris Marker to aim as possible to create something memorable and different and he certainly achieved that.
½ November 13, 2009
Unbelievable melange of '60s and '70s leftists fighting the power and eventually falling into disarray. Chris Marker's idiosyncratic style (a cat parade, bemused voiceover narration) encases a hypnotic collection of found footage of world leaders (Castro, Mao, Allende), forgotten European union officials, some communists, the sadly misled, and a million students engaged with political theory in a way we may never see again.
½ October 13, 2009
This film is more than anything else interested in discrediting communism, revolution. Which is in keeping with its (naturally confused and anemic) support for social democracy (in Czechoslovakia, but not in France). Fundamentally it shares the same view as the bourgeois housewife (de)crying "anarchy". Ultimately a cynical, anti-political film (befitting a cat lover).
August 27, 2009
Chris Marker film that reviews the schism between revolutionary and political communists. Socio-political history of the 60s-70s with a French point of view.
½ July 3, 2009
One of Marker's most ambitious films. At the end of his 'militant phase' Marker wanted to make a film made entirely from found footage, and this results in an extremely dense work exploring the rise and fall the new leftist movement throughout the world during the late 60's to 70's. While a lot of the footage is of the talking heads variety, they are edited in an associative collage form that doesn't cohere to a set message or idea but instead form a sort of dialogue that examines the events shown in relation to similar events during that period of time. I found this much harder to get into than Marker's other films because there is so much history and politics that I'm not familiar with. While there are some of Marker's humor and wry commentary, the long passages of talking heads does make a lot of the film quite dry. This was his last feature before Sans Soleil, and the use of color tinting hints to digital image manipulations in 'The Zone'.
½ June 7, 2008
fazer um documentário de 3 horas não é pra qualquer um. marker não é exatamente qualquer um, é um notório cineasta que usa o cinema pra se expressar diante a sociedade. nesse (com todo propriedade) longa, o diretor não se preocupa em apenas contar o que houve em paris naquele maio de 68, mas em retratar os movimentos de contestação num âmbito global, realmente amplo.
uma coisa que achei engraçada na edição dele foi o movimento "de fora pra dentro" optado por marker pra contar a história desses anos loucos. ele começa " o fundo do ar é vermelho" num contexto global, se debruça sobre a causa francesa pra depois se jogar novamente no exterior. marker só peca por adentrar demais nos aspectos da esquerda francesa, o que faz o espectador descontextalizado boiar tremendamente. apesar disso, mesmo nesses momentos distintos, o faz sempre de forma profunda e não exatamente documental - o filme consegue, ainda assim, guardar uma poética única na edição de imagens.
January 18, 2008
Excellent documentary on the New Left. Makes few concessions to the viewer, but it's worth your time and energy.
½ November 21, 2007
A paradox: only the young will learn anything from it (though the message will be muddled), while only those who were there will understand it (though they likely need no reminding of it). So who benefits from such a film? (Certainly not the workers.)
November 13, 2007
Yksi parhaimpia poliittisia dokumentteja. Vaikka kestääkin kolme tuntia, mutta ei ole liian pitkä. 2002 Marker teki tästä päivitetyn version. Sitä ei kai vielä löydy kuin leffaversiona.
November 9, 2007
Marker's elegy/history/investigation of the rise and fall of the New Left (to be totally reductive). Marker is a canny observer of the human race and nearly all of his works are worth checking out. This is among his finest. It amounts to about three hours of viewing time, but you will walk away enriched.
September 19, 2007
marker at his tangential best. includes a priceless montage of castro habitually adjusting his microphones.
½ January 15, 2004
(Theatre) (First Viewing, 1st Marker film)

A difficult but ultimately rewarding film experience. Communism is not something taught in much detail in the American school systems, so for the first half of the film I felt like I was desperately treading water, trying to keep my head above the waves (and quickly losing the battle) as I tried to understand the importance of Communism on world events during the 1960's as it was presented to me in rapid-fire pace. It was rough going for the first hour or so.

But suddenly I began to realize that while I wasn't fully comprehending the details of the situations presented to me, the power of the images conveyed the message that (I think) Marker was trying to get across- the power of the masses when they unify.

A four hour version of [b]A Grin Without a Cat[/b] was made in 1977, in 2002 Marker re-edited the film, cutting out over an hour of its running time, which he felt made the film too confusing.

A fascinating film, especially now upon reflection. Its artistry and power makes a contemporary documentary like [b]Bowling for Columbine[/b] seem like child's play- juvenille, obvious and artless (not that I liked the film much anyway, but that's beside the point). I'm definitely looking forward to seeing more of Marker's work in the coming weeks- just from one film (and not even one of his signature ones), it is obvious Marker possesses a unique perspective and voice in cinema
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