The following review, one of the most renowned in the history of film criticism, appeared in the new yorker magazine on october 28, 1972 it is reprinted with the permission of the author, pauline kael bernardo bertolucci's last tango in paris was presented for the first time on the closing night of the new. Certainly, kael had her critics at the time she was writing renata adler, kael's most vehement detractor, published her own review collection titled a year in the dark (long out of print) before slipping the shiv to kael with an infamous essay called “the perils of pauline,” a literary assassination which appeared in a 1980. This longer essay can be found in kael's collection going steady trash, art, and the movies i like those cynical heroes who were idealists before they discovered that the world was more rotten than they had been led to expect, we' re just about all of us displaced persons, “a long way from home” when we feel defeated. In this week's issue, i write about pauline kael, who was a new yorker film critic from 1968 to 1991, and whose reviewing helped establish several movies of the late sixties and seventies as classics kael tends to be a controversial figure—not because her critical judgments were unconventional (though. Pauline kael was an american film critic who wrote for the new yorker magazine from 1968 to 1991 kael was known for her witty, biting, highly opinionated and sharply focused reviews, her opinions often contrary to those of her contemporaries she was one of the most. Stanley strangelove by pauline kael from the new yorker magazine, january, 1972 all rights reserved literal-minded in its sex and brutality, teutonic in its humor, stanley kubrick's a clockwork orange might be the work of a strict and exacting german professor who set out to make a porno-violent sci-fi comedy.
I was asked to contribute an essay for an anthology about pauline kael to be published by scarecrow press the editor of the book, wayne stengel, graciously allowed me to post the essay i submitted here if it by any chance it piques your curiosity about sophie's choice, come see the film tonight or. The doings and undoings of pauline kael perception of what would now be called the public intellectual in 1941, kael and her sometime lover robert horan hoped to interest magazines in “a rather complex essay” (her phrase) on the literary critics r p blackmur, kenneth burke, and lionel trilling. It's a brilliant movie, and there's a great story behind it, which you should read all about this piece is not about the movie it's about a review of it, a review that was , it could be argued, as revolutionary to the craft of film criticism as bonnie and clyde was to the craft of film it was written by pauline kael, and it.
Pauline kael, who expressed her passion for movies in jaunty, jazzy prose as longtime film critic for the new yorker, dies at 82 photo (m) in her essay '' trash, art and the movies,'' reprinted in ''going steady,'' ms kael wrote: ''movies took their impetus not from the desiccated, imitation european high. American film critic pauline kael was a brash, exuberant female writer at a time when most of her colleagues were buttoned up — and male the age of movies, a new collection of selected essays and movie reviews from kael, showcases the gutsy and passionate style that made her a household name.
For this reason, i wrote a lengthy take-down of pauline kael vis-a-vis the work of one film director, so that, in reading her reviews thematically, as well as side-by- side, one sees her flaws quite well, and can therefore extrapolate them to the rest of her work the following essay is an excerpt from my book,. An essay on orson welles' (and/or herman mankiewicz's) 1941 film citizen kane.
The publication this past year of brian kellow's pauline kael: a life in the dark, the first biography of pauline kael, and a library of america anthology of kael's essays and reviews called the age of movies, marks the ten-year anniversary of kael's death juxtaposed, the volumes provide a double narrative. Editor sanford schwartz might also have done us non-neophytes a favor by printing more than the single essay here — “movies, the desperate art,” from 1956 — that hasn't already appeared in kael's own collections i'd have liked to see the 1952 pan of chaplin's limelight that started her on her way.