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The Forgiveness Of Blood (#110 of 2)

Understanding Screenwriting #93: The Deep Blue Sea, A Separation, Pauline Kael, & More

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Understanding Screenwriting #93: <em>The Deep Blue Sea</em>, <em>A Separation</em>, Pauline Kael, & More
Understanding Screenwriting #93: <em>The Deep Blue Sea</em>, <em>A Separation</em>, Pauline Kael, & More

Coming Up In This Column: The Deep Blue Sea, A Separation, The Forgiveness of Blood, The Kid With a Bike, Salt of Life, Letters to Young Filmmakers: Creativity & Getting Your Film Made (book), Pauline Kael: A Life in the Dark (book), but first…

Fan Mail: I will take David Ehrentstein at his word that he was serious about Mandingo (1975) is one of the best films about race in America, but I am not sure anybody else will. On Smash’s Ellis I don’t think I made it clear that I think he is bi as well. And I agree completely with David that the “Don’t Say Yes Until I Finish Talking” number is the best one so far in Smash. That episode had not shown up at the time I wrote US#92. Interesting though that they only showed the rehearsal/audition version and did not cut to the fully produced number as they sometimes do. Well, some people can look forward to seeing all those chorus boys in just their towels.

The Deep Blue Sea (2011. Screenplay by Terence Davies, adapted from the play by Terence Rattigan. 98 minutes.)

Terence, meet Terence: Terence Rattigan (1911-1977) was one of the leading British playwrights of the middle of the twentieth century. The period of his greatest success was from 1946 to 1956. His dramas were literate and restrained, usually about members of the upper class stifling their emotions. His work became almost instantaneously unfashionable with the arrival of the Angry Young Men playwrights like John Osborne. But even before his death, Rattigan’s reputation began to regain some of its luster, as did the reputation of his contemporary Noël Coward, and for some of the same reasons. Both wrote dramas about people with restrained emotions, which gives actors a lot of subtext to play. Both were also extraordinary theatrical craftsmen, especially in the area of dramatic structure.

AFI Fest 2011: Miss Bala, Coriolanus, & The Forgiveness of Blood

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AFI Fest 2011: <em>Miss Bala</em>, <em>Coriolanus</em>, & <em>The Forgiveness of Blood</em>
AFI Fest 2011: <em>Miss Bala</em>, <em>Coriolanus</em>, & <em>The Forgiveness of Blood</em>

Acts of war have a way of warping the perception of the world that lasts far longer than the simple gouts of blood and explosive firestorms that accompany them. And while the cinema is especially suited to capture the visceral qualities of that violence, in the hands of skilled filmmakers it also has the potential to elucidate that shift in perception: the way the human psyche and human society reorient themselves in the face of large-scale trauma. It’s a tie that binds a number of films at this year’s AFI Fest: the stories of those who survive and those who do not, of solitary people navigating through the incomprehensible chaos of war and the films that try to make it comprehensible to the audience.