cinewest wrote: ↑April 8th, 2021, 8:41 am
There are 3 Mexican filmmakers and a couple of Brazilians who have been invited to make films in Hollywood in the past 20 years (not two mention 2 top flight Mexican cinematographers), and the 3 amigos (as well as the cinematographers) have done very well there, and are even quite popular on this board because their films and style is so accessible.
I wouldn't say that is true for filmmakers like Martel, and others, who despite their adoption by the arthouse community have had trouble attracting fans (check out their imdb ratings compared to their appeal among critics), even on film boards like this one. As I don't think any of these filmmakers are more "difficult" than some of the ones who do catch on from other places, that is why I believe there is some kind of cultural disconnect going on.
For me, Martel is one of the most interesting filmmakers working today, but she is not only a she (with female sensibilities and concerns), but also from Argentina, whose history and culture are somewhat different what audiences are familiar with or interested in. Perhaps a parallel film industry in Europe might be that of Romania, which despite producing several arthouse hits, hasn't really continued to build on that popularity. Klebber-Mendonca from Brazil is a similar case. Both have unique styles, and make films very particular to the places where they are from, which perhaps demands that the viewer is able to travel further than most viewers can, especially when immersed in something they are largely unfamiliar with and disinterested in.
Let's take the example of Aguirre Wrath of God (made by a German filmmaker, with a foreign, north european perspective on the conquest of the Americas) versus the largely unknown Cabeza de Vaca, also about the conquest of the Americas, but from a Mexican filmmaker who is the progeny of that conquest, and living with the result of it. One film has received a swab of attention and international accolades while the other is largely unknown despite being filled with imagery that was at least as amazing to me. In fact, I think Cabeza de Vaca is the more interesting film.
You brought Ruiz before, who has become one of the adopted unsung filmmakers by a cadre of cinephiles on this board, but how can you watch something like La Noche de Enfrente about the filmmaker's memories (real and imagined) and not think of Fellini? Granted, Ruiz has his own style, as do others who have made films along the same like (Providence from Resnais, Eternity and a Day from Angelopoulos, various from Tarkovsky, etc.), but what I love about Fellini is the way he brought life, memory, and imagination altogether in grand, operatic style.