Friday, March 5, 2010

March 5

So why was Piero Paulo Pasolini murdered? He frustrated the powers that be in Italy for his pro-communist, anti-consumerist views, he frustrated the church for his athiest and homosexual artistic works, he frustrated the communists for his sympathies with the policemen (who were, in his view, lower-class soldiers fighting battles they didn't understand against upper-class-bred intellectual communists; see why he might consider that a contradiction?) and he frustrated certain political elements with his implications about the prevalence of organized crime in national politics (his final, unfinished novel is a story about a 'white coup')
So he had plenty of enemies, and he didn't run himself over with his own car several times. But he had enough supporters who didn't believe that Pasolini was killed because of a badly negotiated sex transaction, even before the hustler's confession was retracted. But who? The mob? The Vatican? The government? Really pro-active film critics?
Actually, it's his films that I know, his films that have the most global reknown. On one end of the spectrum, there's his Gospel According to St Matthew, nominated for three Academy Awards and still considered one of the most best cinematic tellings of Christ's life ever made (yes, he was an atheist at the time of production.) On the other end of the spectrum, his final film, an extremely vivid and politicized adaption of the Marquis De Sade's 120 Days of Sodom, is still banned several countries to this day. In fact, Pasolini's murder happened before the global release of Salo, implicating the film as another possible motive for his murder.
While I'm not about to post Salo on here, I found a short film (music video, kinda) he directed for a collection, about the discarding of two marrionettes. It has all the Pasolini strengths: arresting images, bizzare juxtapositions, fanfare for the common man, ending that's 90% bummer, 10% uplift:

And now for something completely different: here's some English intellectuals, distilling the peculiarities of Pasolini in their own medium:

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