Thursday, February 11, 2010

Mixing Politics and 365Watch #1

I've not been mixing it much lately, so, as the blog is currently in film watching mode, I've decided to kick-start a series entitled, 'Mixing Politics and 365Watch'.

I can't guarantee that it will have the longevity of 'Mixing Footie and Politics' or the studied obscurantism of 'Mixing Pop and Politics', but I do promise irrelevance and responses of 'What the fuck is he on?'*

Inspired by the Six Degrees of Kevin Bacon trivia game, the idea is that I will take a film that I watched as part of 365Watch and somehow link it to fringe left-wing politics. The more tangential the connection the better. The more obscure the politics? All the more in keeping with the blog.

Of course, such a series should start with the usual suspects. From Dustin Hoffman to the SPGB in 3 moves.

  • Last night I watched the 1969 movie, John and Mary, starring a buttoned-up Dustin Hoffman and an eyebrow-less Mia Farrow.
  • Adapted by John Mortimer, the script is based on Mervyn Jones's 1966 novel of the same name.
  • Mervyn Jones? Only the same Mervyn Jones who reviewed Barltrop's The Monument: the Story of the Socialist Party of Great Britain in the pages of New Statesman in 1975. (The review wasn't as hostile as you would have thought. It wasn't that glowing, either.)
  • Sorry, it doesn't get any better.

    *'What the fuck is he on?' Lack of bastard sleep.


    Brigada Flores Magon said...

    I saw that film when it first came out. It didn't get to St Andrews as I recall so we had to go across to Dundee to watch it. I liked it a lot then and intend to watch it again to see if the reaction changes. Thanks for reminding me of it.

    Darren said...

    I'd never even heard of the film before I stumbled across it on Netflix Instant the other night.

    I enjoyed it, though I can't pretend that I'd recommend it as a must see. Maybe one for any Dustin Hoffman completists out there? I picked up on it because I guess I'm a sucker for old films filmed on location in New York.

    It was funny to see the characters discussing organic farm produce in the late 60s as a lifestyle choice. It seemed so very modern. And the scene at the University campus meeting with all the 68 radicals 'denouncing the man' had a certain curiosity value to it.

    Watching the film does also make me want to read Mervyn Jones's original source novel. At this point, I'm guessing the novel and its characters were based in London. It'd be interesting to see how close the film script is to the novel.

    One thing about the film, though; I don't understand the fascination with Mia Farrow. The hair and the lack of eyebrows suggested that she'd turned up to a David Bowie lookalike contest four years too early.

    And that accent of hers? The only other person I've heard talk like that is Gwynneth Paltrow. It must be an actorly thing.