Scorsese's The Irishman is not a masculine power fantasy, nor could its heavy underlying sadness ever be mistaken for delight in violence or criminality.
Pierrot le fou is filled with cars, guns, cash, and books, but Godard is more interested in what exists between these "definite things", namely the thoughts inhabiting empty space.
David Lynch's impossibly mundane and unspeakably grotesque Eraserhead turns a looking glass upon an entire constellation of avant-garde signifiers.
David Lynch's The Elephant Man, now available from Criterion, is as much a life-affirming parable as it is an exercise in reorienting the boundaries of what we recognize as human--and inhuman.
Scorsese's selections for World Cinema Project No. 3 recall an attitude typical of a bygone age of film studies when professors would rationalize overlooking the reactionary politics of a film because aspects of the filmmaking itself trumped such "trivial" concerns.
Restored by the World Cinema Project and now available from The Criterion Collection, Djibril Diop Mambéty's cheeky critique of colonialism, Touki Bouki (Journey of the Hyena) reveals a great act of myth-making.
George Marshall's western spoof, Destry Rides Again, has a serious central premise; can society function without the threat of violence?
Buster Keaton was aware that the camera can be a catalyst of violence, especially stereotypical violence, for audience consumption -- and that it could also evoke the shared joy of cathartic laughter.