Author Topic: A British Picture : Portrait of an Enfant Terrible  (Read 3126 times)

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Offline BoyScoutKevin

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Re: A British Picture : Portrait of an Enfant Terrible
« Reply #7 on: December 14, 2014, 07:44:45 PM »







"29."Not proven" That is a British verdict. I don't think that verdict exists in the American judicial system."
Scottish not British.  England and Scotland have different legal systems, England has guilty or not guilty and Scotland has the third category "not proven".

You are right, of course. Thank-you for the correction. In that, the American judicial system comes nearer to the English judicial system, then the Scottish judicial system. Than-you again for the correction.

Offline Iain Fisher

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    • Iain Fisher
Re: A British Picture : Portrait of an Enfant Terrible
« Reply #6 on: December 05, 2014, 09:42:12 PM »
"He was never appreciated in his lifetime." Ken is talking about the hero of "Savage Messiah," but he is really thinking about himself.

Agreed, I think there is a lot of Ken in Savage Messiah.

If he so liked the Lake District, why didn't he live there for a longer period of time?

I think he lost his house in divorce proceedings.  At the end of his life he received virtually no royalties for his films, the money went to ex-wives.

Offline Iain Fisher

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    • Iain Fisher
Re: A British Picture : Portrait of an Enfant Terrible
« Reply #5 on: December 05, 2014, 09:36:34 PM »
I reckon Ken and Walt would get on, I guess Ken admired the classic Disney films, but who didn't.

Ken and Dali would be interesting, but I reckon their imaginations are too close, so they would get in each others way.  Dali and Hitchcock in Spellbound was a good pairing.

I reckon Ken saw a lot of Fritz Lang's early work.

"Bram Stoker's original novel. That is a real snoozer."  Yes it is !!!

"29."Not proven" That is a British verdict. I don't think that verdict exists in the American judicial system."
Scottish not British.  England and Scotland have different legal systems, England has guilty or not guilty and Scotland has the third category "not proven".

Offline BoyScoutKevin

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Re: A British Picture : Portrait of an Enfant Terrible
« Reply #4 on: December 04, 2014, 11:42:17 PM »
23. The Lake District is actually a miniature version of . . .
a. Lake Champlain in New England
b. Lake Chelan in Washington State.
c. Lake Louise in Canada.
And all 3 are supposedly inhabited by a "monster" dwelling within the depths of each lake.

24. Another similarity between Ken and Walt is that each had a boy scout.
a. Ken's was in his "Lair of the White Worm."
b. Walt's was Mickey Mouse.

25. Walt got along best with people that were as unique as he was.
a. American science fiction writer Ray Bradbury.
b. American ventriloquist Edgar Bergen.
c. ex-Russian air pioneer de Seversky.
d. Polish conductor Leopold Stokowski.
e. Spanish artist Salvador Dali.
Thus, what would Walt have made of British director Ken Russell?
It is unfortunate, that they apparently never met.

Now, on to the last part Part V.

26. "Siegfried" is actually the 1st half of Fritz Lang's "Die Nibelungen" from 1924. The 2nd half of "Die Nibelungen" is "Die Nibelungen : Kriemhild's Revenge," which I don't know whether Ken ever saw or not.

27. "Siegfried" so influenced Ken when he saw it some 16 years after it was made, that it was still influencing him 64 years later, when he was making his "Lair of the White Worm."

28. His children's favorite bedtime tale was "Lair of the White Worm." I presume the script version, but if he wanted to put his children to sleep, he should have used Bram Stoker's original novel. That is a real snoozer.

29."Not proven" That is a British verdict. I don't think that verdict exists in the American judicial system.

30. Most of Ken's films reflect some aspect of his life. For example: the scout scene in "Lair of the White Worm" harkens back to his seeing Disney's "Pinocchio" in the theater. But, if you were to ask Ken which of his films came nearest to being autobiographical, he'd probably say "Clouds of Glory : William and Dorothy."

-Finis-

Next time: Something different from Ken


Offline BoyScoutKevin

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Re: A British Picture : Portrait of an Enfant Terrible
« Reply #3 on: November 25, 2014, 05:46:49 PM »
Continuing with Parts III and IV

13. "He was never appreciated in his lifetime." Ken is talking about the hero of "Savage Messiah," but he is really thinking about himself.

14. He said he was forced out of Los Angeles, California, because of the smog, but for someone who lived in London, England, during, what I     
      presume was some of its most polluted days, that is a strange excuse for leaving.

15. The Lake District became his reflection on his life and the cathedral where he worshiped.

16. If he so liked the Lake District, why didn't he live there for a longer period of time?

17. And Mickey Mouse stuffed dolls were his awards.

18. There is another connection between Ken and Mickey, in the scene, where the boy, who is playing Ken, and the girl, who is playing Ken's wife,
      are typing out scripts for films he hopes to direct, both the boy and girl are wearing Mickey and Minnie party hats.

19. It is unfortunate that Walt Disney and Ken and then Walt Disney Studios and Ken never got together to do something, but to be honest, having
      seen most of the films put out by Disney at that time, I can't think of anything suitable for Ken.

20. There is another connection between Walt and Ken. Both loved the Lake District the 1st time they saw it.

21. Ken underestimates the potential of his scripts to be made into films. During this time, his segment from "Aria" was based on a script he did.   
His adaptation of Wilde's "Salome" was made into the film "Salome's Last Dance." And his adaptation of Stoker's "Lair of the White Worm" was made into one of his better films "The Lair of the White Worm." Though it never did get the distribution it deserved, because the company that was distributing it went out of business at the same time the film was released.

22. And while he seemingly makes out, that his follow-up to "Women in Love," "The Rainbow" was never made into a film. It was, and it was
      directed by Ken.

Next time; Part V


Offline BoyScoutKevin

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Re: A British Picture : Portrait of an Enfant Terrible
« Reply #2 on: November 19, 2014, 09:39:09 PM »
Continuing with Part II

09. I had either forgotten or never knew that Ken was in "Annie Get Your Gun." He says it was a small part. Does anybody know more than that?

10. I know that a friend who was also in the military with Ken convinced him to try dance as a career, but I thought it was someone who was in the RAF with Ken, but here Ken says that the friend was in the Royal Navy.

11. Huw Weldon
      What would Ken and Huw have done without each other?

12. If it works once, then do it again.
      a. "Mahler" The horseback riding. From "Elgar"
      b. "Lair of the White Worm" The drowning in the bathtub. From "Dance of the Seven Veils"

Next time: Part III

Offline BoyScoutKevin

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A British Picture : Portrait of an Enfant Terrible
« Reply #1 on: November 15, 2014, 07:15:34 PM »
. . . in 6 parts

Unfortunately, Ken's "The Devils" is no longer available for viewing on youtube, but some of his other films are, so we will look at those, beginning with this one.

Part I

01. Before Ken started putting his actors in dresses, there was Arthur Lucan as Old Mother Riley. An inspiration?

02. Even at an early age, Ken realized how important music was to film, which served him in good stead in his later age, when he became a director.

03. His childhood interest in trains is best manifested in "Mahler."

04. Unfortunately, another of his childhood interests, in the South Seas, never seems to have been manifested in any of his films.

05. Well, that explains that. An explanation of that one scene at the train station is provided in this film. Still, I think Luchino Visconti did it better 3 years earlier in his "Death in Venice."

06. Maybe, as in the film, he wanted to become a director once he was demobbed from the RAF, but there were some jobs in-between. Ballet dancer, photographer, etc.

07. And Ken already had some experience at sea, as a cadet, is that why he joined the RAF instead of the Royal Navy?

08. Pedophilia (in its loosest sense) does run rampant in Ken's films. Not only in "Mahler," but also in . . .

"The Devils
"Tommy"
"Salome's Last Dance"
"Lair of the White Worm"
etc.

Next time: Part II