Author Topic: "The Devils" One More Time  (Read 5352 times)

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Offline Iain Fisher

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Mark Kermode on releasing The Devils
« Reply #18 on: December 08, 2014, 10:36:59 PM »
Ever loyal Russell fan, Mark Kermode, who reviews films for the BBC, asks why The Devils has not been released

www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/markkermode/posts/The-Devils-Demand

Offline Iain Fisher

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Re: "The Devils" One More Time
« Reply #17 on: March 10, 2014, 09:54:04 PM »
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045. When it is Catholic vs. Protestant in a film, as here, normally the Pros. come out on top. The one exception that I can remember is "The Four Musketeers."

I hadn't thought of this, but yes it does seem to be the case.

Offline Iain Fisher

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Re: "The Devils" One More Time
« Reply #16 on: March 10, 2014, 09:52:45 PM »
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023. Ken's horror trilogy: "The Devils," "Gothic," and "Lair of the White Worm."

I know The Devils is called horror a lot, but I just don't see it.  To take another thoughtful classy film, The Exorcist- the latter is clearly horror.

And Gothic wouldn't make horror fans (I am one!!) happy- I like it for other reasons.  Lair is definitely horror (the horror comedy variety).

Offline Iain Fisher

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Re: "The Devils" One More Time
« Reply #15 on: March 10, 2014, 09:48:51 PM »
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048. And I have to put "Women in Love" ahead of "The Devils," as Ken's best film. For the following reasons.
(a) It is better edited. Actually, "Women in Love" is the best edited film I have ever seen.

I agree on the editing
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(b) The women in "Women in Love" give a better performance than the women in "The Devils."

Yes, Women in Love gives Glenda a real character, in The Devils the female characters verge on caricature, maybe excluding Georgina Hale.

Quote
(c.) And the humor in "The Devils" does not work all the time for me.

I love the humour (sorry for different spelling).

Offline Iain Fisher

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Re: "The Devils" One More Time
« Reply #14 on: March 10, 2014, 09:43:45 PM »
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"032. probably Reed's best performance in any of Ken's films or in any film.

033. Yet, as the hero, he is not entirely likable."

Don't know, I like his character.  He is weak (having lovers etc) but that makes him human.
But yes, it is Reed's best performance.

Offline Iain Fisher

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Re: "The Devils" One More Time
« Reply #13 on: March 10, 2014, 09:42:05 PM »
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"Well, that was a kick in the head. I went to the world wide web to view the 9th 5 minute segment of Ken Russell's "The Devil," and the whole film had been removed"

Disaster!!
« Last Edit: March 10, 2014, 09:45:36 PM by Iain Fisher »

Offline BoyScoutKevin

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Re: "The Devils" One More Time
« Reply #12 on: March 05, 2014, 06:40:20 PM »
Well, that was a kick in the head. I went to the world wide web to view the 9th 5 minute segment of Ken Russell's "The Devil," and the whole film had been removed for the normal reasons, which means copyright infringement. Till I can find it someplace else, or until I do something on Ken Russell's "Whore," from one of Ken's best to one of Ken's worst, I'll come up with something else. But, first, a final few notes on "The Devils."

046. That is not an actor playing Father Grandier. That is Father Grandier. Oliver Reed.

047. Hitchcock and Russell. Not only are the villains personable. They are almost likable. Somewhat common now, but almost a new concept, when they started out making films.

048. And I have to put "Women in Love" ahead of "The Devils," as Ken's best film. For the following reasons.
(a) It is better edited. Actually, "Women in Love" is the best edited film I have ever seen.
(b) The women in "Women in Love" give a better performance than the women in "The Devils."
(c.) And the humor in "The Devils" does not work all the time for me.

Offline BoyScoutKevin

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Re: "The Devils" One More Time
« Reply #11 on: February 25, 2014, 11:49:26 PM »
"The Devils" (1971) Ken Russell 8/23
The 8th 5 minute segment

038. The hero in "The Devils" and the villainess in "Lair of the White Worm" are very much two sides of the same coin.

039. Whereas, the hero in "The Devils" is outnumbered by the villains, the villainess in "Lair of the White Worm" is outnumbered by the heroes. Which is probably why neither survives.

040. That is not to say that she does not knock off the odd character-- the nuns, the ex-farmer and his wife, the boy scout, the butler, the policeman, etc.--before she is taken out by the heroes. Which is a far greter toll inflicted on others, than the hero in "The Devils" is able to inflict.

041. And the difference between villainy and heroism.

042. And both use their position as priest and priestess to get sex.

043. You may have guns, but we have crossbows. Who can load and firer faster?

044. They did have gunpowder in those days, but I wonder if the other way is not more dramatic from a film standpoint.

045. When it is Catholic vs. Protestant in a film, as here, normally the Pros. come out on top. The one exception that I can remember is "The Four Musketeers."

To be continued . . .

Offline BoyScoutKevin

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Re: "The Devils" One More Time
« Reply #10 on: February 16, 2014, 07:40:00 PM »
"The Devils" (1971) Ken Russell 7/23
The 7th 5 minute segment

032. probably Reed's best performance in any of Ken's films or in any film.

033. Yet, as the hero, he is not entirely likable.

034. And, if he is not entirely likable, the villains are not entirely unlikable.

035. The nails do not go there. Most of the time, they show a person being crucified with the nails being driven thru the palms of the hands, as here, when they were actually, historically, driven thru the wrists.

036. One just cannot take most of the hallucinations in Ken's films seriously, as they are so often overdone.

037. Unlike the chief character in "Lair of the White Worm," who seems to be always driven by lust, he chief character here is slowly turning from lust to love, but what about the women in his life, are they driven by lust, love, or something in-between?

To be continued . . .

Offline BoyScoutKevin

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Re: "The Devils" One More Time
« Reply #9 on: February 16, 2014, 07:31:47 PM »
"003. I loved the cardinal's glasses.
004. Towards the end of the segment, that is one of the two scenes I remember from the first time I saw the film"

Yes, one of my favourite bits, the king and the cardinal showing the battle between monarchy and religion which is a theme from the film.  The king wants Loudun to keep its independence, the cardinal (running the country) want to remove the city states so he can create a united France.

I tried to find out if the king actually did performance on stage.  I could not find anything in history books, but eventually reading the Three musketeers books by Dumas (set in this period) it is mentioned that the king did perform in shows.

Iain

And who is caught between the two most powerful men in France, who else but our hero, Father Grandier, and the people of Loudon.

I didn't know that about Louis XIII, but his son Louis XIV danced ballet, or what passed for ballet dancing at that time, when he was a young man.

Offline Iain Fisher

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Re: "The Devils" One More Time
« Reply #8 on: February 08, 2014, 11:00:01 PM »
"003. I loved the cardinal's glasses.
004. Towards the end of the segment, that is one of the two scenes I remember from the first time I saw the film"

Yes, one of my favourite bits, the king and the cardinal showing the battle between monarchy and religion which is a theme from the film.  The king wants Loudun to keep its independence, the cardinal (running the country) want to remove the city states so he can create a united France.

I tried to find out if the king actually did performance on stage.  I could not find anything in history books, but eventually reading the Three musketeers books by Dumas (set in this period) it is mentioned that the king did perform in shows.

Iain

Offline BoyScoutKevin

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Re: "The Devils" One More Time
« Reply #7 on: February 04, 2014, 07:42:02 PM »
"The Devils" (1971) Ken Russell 6/23
The 6th 5 minute segment

029. Father Grandier may be breaking his vows of chastity, but his sexuality comes across as being healthier than the sexually repressed nunnery or the "anthing goes" French court.

030. Her body is as twisted as her mind. While there are a number of mentally twisted women in Ken's films, the only one that seems to be as twisted physically as she is mentally is Sister Jeanne.

031. The Confession? Historically accurate? Or something from our Ken?

To be continued . . .

Offline BoyScoutKevin

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Re: "The Devils" One More Time
« Reply #6 on: January 29, 2014, 10:02:25 PM »
"The Devils" (1971) Ken Russell 5/23
The 5th 5 minute segment.

018. Writers of the that day are apparently better screenwriters than those of 1971, as many of the lines in the film are taken from what was actually written at the time the film takes place.

019. Another fine performance from Oliver Reed.

020. Probably better than his performance in "Women in Love," as this role is the more difficult of the two to perform.

021. As this character is the more complex and complicated of the two characters.

022. At least, so far, the failure is in the female characters, at least in comparison to the female characters in "Women in Love."

023. Ken's horror trilogy: "The Devils," "Gothic," and "Lair of the White Worm."

024. Round and round again we go. Again the camera follows the person above it, as he walks in circles above the camera. "Lair of the White Worm."

025. For someone who is down on realistm in films, Ken's films are often realistic in some area or the other: the historical facts in "The Devils," the backstage scenes in "The Boy Friend," the relationships in "Lair of the White Worm," etc.

026. The delay between the start of the film and the appearance of the primary character: Father Grandier (Oliver Reed) in "The Devils," Lady Sylvia Marsh (Amanda Donohoe) in "Lair of the White Worm," etc.

027. While not in quality, the subject and style is similair in both "The Devils" and "Lair of the White Worm."

028. The difference is that there is a quartet of heroes in "Lair of the White Worm," and so far, but a solo hero in "The Devils." No wonder the heroes in "Lair of the White Worm" seemingly had more success.

To be continued . . .

Offline BoyScoutKevin

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Re: "The Devils" One More Time
« Reply #5 on: January 14, 2014, 11:12:38 PM »
"The Devils" (1971) Ken Russell 4/23
The 4th 5 minute segment.

015. Like . . .
Most of Ken's films, the chief villain is society.
Unlike . . .
Most of Ken's films, there are also individuals that can be considered to be the villains.
Like . . .
Most of Ken's films, the villains are more interesting characters than the film's heroes.
Unlike . . .
"Lair of the White Worm," where the villain(ess) is the primary character, here the villains are the secondary characters.
Problem . . .
Here the secondary characters are more interesting than the primary characters.

016. Ken can't help himself from being humorous, when he is serious, and his subject is serious.

017. I can't help but be reminded of the Hammer horrors that were being made at this time.

To be continued . . .

Offline BoyScoutKevin

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Re: "The Devils" One More Time
« Reply #4 on: December 27, 2013, 09:48:48 PM »
"The Devils" (1971) Ken Russell 3/23
The 3rd 5 minute segment

012. Again we see Ken's fondness for the hallucinatory dream sequence.

013. The exact like cannot be done again, because the film is very much a product of its time: the late '60's and the early '70's.

014. You rue their methods, but you cannot but applaud what they are trying to do: create a modern France.

To be continued . . .