This week's Hit Me With Your Best Shot topic is Michelangelo Antonio's new wave classic Blow-Up (1966) and we're dedicating it to Vanessa: The Life of Vanessa Redgrave, the first biography written about her which is released this week from Pegasus Press. I read an advanced copy on my cruise last month. The author is Dan Callahan, who I know here in New York City and who is a tried and true Actressexual™ (and loved that word the moment Nick and I coined it). He's previously written a book on Barbara Stanwyck so you know he has good taste. Because he values actresses, the biography is more concerned with her gift onscreen and stage than her scandal-laden politics, though those details are there, too. (Dan also picked his favorite shot from the movie for our little weekly viewing party.)
Imagine my surprise when Vanessa Redgrave was barely in the movie! I had remembered the film quite differently but this movie is a slippery one, as you can tell from the write-ups. We had more dissenters than we usually get when we pull films directly from the canon.
Blow-Up's 7 Best Shots?
as determined by the brave cinephiles playing the Hit Me With Your Best Shot game
[Click on the images for the corresponding articles]
As critical an indictment of the camera eye as anyone who made his living on the backside of a camera could possible make."
-Antagony & Ecstasy
The photographer as minotaur in his own labyrinth...
- The Film Experience
More than just a simple glamour shot..."
-The Film's The Thing
We're just as paranoid as Thomas is...
Redgrave makes you ask all of these questions and far more."
- Dan Callahan author of "Vanessa: The Life of Vanessa Redgrave"
Creating his own story using still frames..."
The guy can’t decide what he should be doing, and I think that’s my problem with the movie..."
-Coco Hits NY
I took my cues from Antonioni and his lead and went for something that captivated me simply for the mood it conveys..."
- Film Actually
NEXT ON HIT ME
Bryan Singer's X-Men (2000). This film was part of our first season of Best Shot so this one, like Mean Girls last month, is a reprise. But if you weren't with us in 2010, now's the time to join the cause before the Mutants Strike Back in X-Men Days of Future Past which opens on the 23rd.