Thursday, September 6, 2007

Lenny (1974, Bob Fosse)

"The story of acerbic 1960s comic Lenny Bruce, whose groundbreaking, no-holds-barred style and social commentary was often deemed by the Establishment as too obscene for the public"

Bob Fosse delivers another film that left me stunned. Everything is once again done in such a masterful way that he is slowly creeping up on my "favorite directors" list if I were to have one.

You get a sense while watching his movies that there is truly an artist behind the camera. Maybe it's because of his background as a choreographer but Fosse's direction is something else. He seems to understand the rhythm of film and expresses this understanding through his editing. Cabaret, All That Jazz, Star 80, and now Lenny are some of the best edited films that I have ever seen. The one thing that makes the editing in all of these films stand out is the way Fosse chooses to use his edit to tell his story or to give a simple sense of emotion.

For example in Lenny he edits back and forth between Lenny Bruce doing his stand up act later on in his career to him starting out and getting famous. By this I mean that every joke in the future stand up act begins a new chapter in the films storyline. This is once again really hard to explain but it works perfectly when you see it.

This is just one of the many reasons why I loved Lenny. The performances, nice use of black and white photography, and excellent direction all add up to tell a very inner and powerful character study of a man who was too ahead of his time.

Great film that deserves more fans for sure.

- A

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