Tuesday, 27 November
The Killing of a Chinese Bookie
THE KILLING OF A CHINESE BOOKIE 1976
Directed by John Cassavetes
John Cassavetes was one of the trail-blazing mavericks of the last century. He smashed open open new ways of making films that were inherently anti-Hollywood, bringing back some truth to an industry that had become glamorous but fake. Unusual even for a Cassavetes film, this is his venture into film noir, but it is at the same time a rejection of the stereotypes of the entire noir/gangster movie genre. In all his films he never just glides across the surface of things, giving the audience what it expects. Instead he blows away the expectations of cheap entertainment and brings things back down to real life.
The plot of Bookie is pretty straightforward. Strip-club owner Cosmo Vitelli gets into debt with the Mob and is pressured into murdering a bookie. Other directors such as Scorsese would have made an tight, exciting thriller out this premise. But John Cassavetes goes for a completely different approach, and doesn't play by "the rules" - so don't expect a Hollywood gangster film here. Cassavettes wasn't interested in gangsters or killing at all. He was only interested in real life, and not stereotypes or imitating other movies. He ignores the obvious way of proceeding, slows things down, focuses on characters and strange relationships and moments, and ends up with a cinematic poem. In essence, this film is about a man who tries to retain his sense of morality in a world that's becoming more and more corrupt. Suspenseful, mesmerizing, and idiosyncratic, The Killing of a Chinese Bookie is a thought-provoking examination of despair and identity. Starring Ben Gazzara.
This will be a high-definition projection.
Date & Time:
- 3-5 €