The Explanation
(for those who require one)

And, of course, that is what all of this is -- all of this: the one song, ever changing, ever reincarnated, that speaks somehow from and to and for that which is ineffable within us and without us, that is both prayer and deliverance, folly and wisdom, that inspires us to dance or smile or simply to go on, senselessly, incomprehensibly, beatifically, in the face of mortality and the truth that our lives are more ill-writ, ill-rhymed and fleeting than any song, except perhaps those songs -- that song, endlesly reincarnated -- born of that truth, be it the moon and June of that truth, or the wordless blue moan, or the rotgut or the elegant poetry of it. That nameless black-hulled ship of Ulysses, that long black train, that Terraplane, that mystery train, that Rocket '88', that Buick 6 -- same journey, same miracle, same end and endlessness."
-- Nick Tosches, Where Dead Voices Gather

The Art of Cinema #122

10 Rillington Place
(Richard Fleischer; 1970)

Richard Fleischer passed away today. He was 89. The cause of death was not revealed in press accounts, and I could, if I wanted to, advance a very credible theory as to what may have helped usher him into the beyond. But I think it's best that we simply remember what once was: an extraordinary, under-explored legacy that will hopefully one day get the attention it deserves.


Sam said...

I never knew that he dircted "Mandingo". I remembered he did "Doctor Doolittle" and "Fantasic Voyage", but that threw me for a loop.

Anonymous said...

That's a shame he hadn't more recognition - his hard-boiled stuff was very good, and made up for the more pedestrian stuff he occasionally pummped out. (I do admit to guilty pleasures in many of 'em - the score for "The Vikings" heard from afar will bring back fond memories of cardboard swordfights with my older brother, but neither one of us could to Tony Curtis' accent justice.)


Brent McKee said...

But of course, for all the movies good and bad that he did, he will constantly be eclipsed by the legacy of his father Max Fleischer. I noticed for example that most of his obituaries included the words "son of Max Fleischer" and "Betty Boop and Popeye", usually in the second paragraph. It must be hard being the son of a legend and in more or less the same business.