The Sound Barrier (1952) and Tenet (2020)

Dir. David Lean. Starring Ann Todd, Ralph Richardson, Nigel Patrick Dir. Christopher Nolan. Starring John David Washington, Elizabeth Debicki, Robert Pattinson In two bloated ages of blockbuster filmmaking, David Lean and Christopher Nolan are curious rejoinders to their times. Lean, while not immune to the bloat of the 1950s and 1960s, made films which more… Read More The Sound Barrier (1952) and Tenet (2020)

The Wolf Man (1941) and Night of the Lepus (1972)

Dir. George Waggner. Starring Lon Chaney, Jr., Claude Rains, Evelyn Ankers Dir. William F. Claxton. Starring Stuart Whitman, Janet Leigh, Rory Calhoun Both of these pictures—one a classic horror movie from Universal and the other a marvelously terrible horror movie that made me go “Aw!” for ninety minutes—begin with scientific invocations. In 1941, one goes… Read More The Wolf Man (1941) and Night of the Lepus (1972)

San Francisco (1936) and Zandy’s Bride (1974)

Dir. W.S. Van Dyke. Starring Jeanette MacDonald, Clark Gable, Spencer Tracy Dir. Jan Troell. Starring Gene Hackman, Liv Ullmann, Eileen Heckart There’s nothing inherently weird about the idea of a disaster movie where the first three-quarters of it have nothing to do with the disaster itself. The reason Titanic turned into this enormous phenomenon was not really… Read More San Francisco (1936) and Zandy’s Bride (1974)

Belladonna of Sadness (1973) and Swann in Love (1984)

Dir. Eiichi Yamamoto. Starring Aiko Nagayama, Tatsuya Nakadai, Katsutaka Ito Dir. Volker Schlondorff. Starring Jeremy Irons, Ornella Muti, Alain Delon Two movies about sex, which go about the subject about as differently as one could imagine. In Belladonna of Sadness, the Devil (Nakadai) appears to Jeanne (Nagayama) as a, well, he’s a penis, and he… Read More Belladonna of Sadness (1973) and Swann in Love (1984)