A documentary about legendary Hollywood camera man Jack Cardiff. It held my interest. Cardiff was a pioneer in artistic colour photgraphy in the movies. The Black Narcissis is a tribute to his talents as a camera man. A must see for photography fans.
Nice enough little doc, but its only consequence is to make one want to revel in The Archers’ magnificent, baroque vision once again. Cardiff really could have hung up his viewfinder after making the three amazing Michael Powell/Emeric Pressburger pictures profiled here. An unintended effect of watching the arc of his career, however, is to witness the demise of the Hollywood studio system. Cardiff went from being a pioneer and visionary within the British studio system, to land in Hollywood to work with another rarity---Hitchcock, a master who also retained his independence, but over here. Unfortunately, the project was a legendary dog—“Under Capricorn”. We then see Cardiff casting his pearls in bloated, desperate 50’s efforts like “The Black Rose”, and “The Vikings” (and worse), and finally, descending to “Rambo”. Ahhh well, a girl’s gotta make a living, and Cardiff seems to take it all in stride. But OH! “The Red Shoes” and AH! “Black Narcissus”. Bless him.
A wonderful tribute to one of the greatest cinematographers in the world.
Nice documentary about an important old-school filmmaker.
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