East of Constantinople, West of Shanghai

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Other People’s Pulp: Krimi, Giallo & Slasher (Part 4), a Guest Post

91Last installment of this lengthy but fun overview of the connections between Krimi, Giallo and Slasher movies.
The previous three episodes can be found here, here and here.
And we are about to close with a bang.

But before the bang, I must once again thank Lucia Patrizi for her contribution, and wish you all a happy reading.

Last time we discovered Mario Bava‘s Reazione a Catena

And yet, if analyzed in depth and compared to the Giallos by Argento (and in part with those by Martino), it is easy to notice how little of the formula is maintained, and what seeds of the future Slasher movie it carries within its frames.

So, let’s do it!
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Passing The Night At Headquarters

ebca62881b8bd846767adfd9b03ce852I sometimes post quotes and poetry here on Karavansara – I love Chinese poetry, and sometimes it feels nice to share some ancient poem on these pages, as some kind of intermission.

This is from Du Fu, a Tang Dynasty poet and one of the all-time greats. He has been called a poet-sage, and compared to a slew of Western authors, from Ovid to Beaudelaire.

This is a fine Autumn piece that fits the fleeting, early fogs I’m seeing from my window, and these nights.


Passing The Night At Headquarters

Clear autumn at headquarters,
wu-tung trees cold beside the well;
I spend the night alone in the river city,
using up all of the candles.
Sad bugle notes sound through the long night
as I talk to myself;
glorious moon hanging in mid-sky
but who looks?
The endless dust-storm of troubles
cuts off news and letters;
the frontier passes are perilous,
travel nearly impossible.
I have already suffered ten years,
ten years of turmoil and hardship;
now I am forced to accept a perch
on this one peaceful branch.

And if you know what a wu-tung tree looks like, please let me know in the comments below.

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I feel like Jock Mahoney.
No, wait, let me explain.

Jock Mahoney was a former Marine that starred in two Western TV series and a few Western movies, and ended up playing Tarzan in the ’60s after auditioning for the role in the ’40s.

In particular, Mahoney starred in Tarzan goes to India, in which Burroughs’ character moves from his home turf in Africa to Asia,  in order to save the elephants endangered by the works for a new dam.

And no, it’s not that I’m about to start wearing a toupée.

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Other People’s Pulp: The Hawksian woman

62c6a44de21381ca7e7aedd4f06a0a6fIt was all because of Carole Lombard.
So beautiful it hurt, and very talented, actress Carole Lombard1 was the queen of the screwball comedy movies, and back in the days she was the highest paid star in Hollywood.

I think I first got struck by Lombard when I first saw Ernst Lubitsch‘s To Be or Not to Be, and afterwards I tried to track as many of her movies as possible.
I like her very much2.
It was by reading up on Lombard that I got deeper into screwball comedies, the so called sex comedies without sex that Hollywood developed to counter the Hays Code.

What fascinates me to this day is the fact that screwball comedy is sort of the mirror opposite of the noir genre.
Sexual tension, gender politics and the roles of man and woman in society, class struggle and social critique are all there, as is the idea of the male lead being somewhat dazed and confused, and a victim of his own role – it was all there in both genres, played for thrills in noir, and for laughs in screwball comedy. Continue reading


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