By Michael Atkinson
From Amazon: "For many, Blue Velvet is David Lynch's masterpiece. It crystallises lots of his leader preoccupations: the evil and violence underlying the outside of suburbia, the seedy by-ways of sexuality, the scary visual appeal of the grownup global to a child's eyes. during this difficult and layered analyzing of the movie, Michael Atkinson analyses Blue Velvet because the definitive expression of the traumatized innocence which characterizes Lynch's work." Michael Atkinson teaches movie at new york college, and writes feedback for movie remark and the Village Voice.
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He wants sex. She declines and continues to hold out for many days. indb 34 11/21/11 10:35 AM Shanghai Twenties 35 other infant-like mama’s boy, complains to both his mother and his father’s second wife, a concubine. They step in to pressure Chunmei. Though the concubine is described as “an intermediary between old and new ways,” her approach is cruel and brutish. When Chunmei says, “No, I’d rather die than comply with his desires,” the second wife beats her and subjects her to physical abuse that is quite literally hard to watch.
These films may be very old, but, curiously, they have a remarkable degree of contemporary relevance. indb 41 11/21/11 10:35 AM 42 Chapter 1 the mid-1980s metropolitan China once again discovered the subnational and transnational modern marriage, complete with all its ambiguities, stresses, and strains. As they did in the 1920s, young, modern, global married couples struggled with new freedoms, choices, and temptations, all of which involved complicated webs of negotiation. Then and now, forgiveness, redemption, and reconciliation are by no means guaranteed to transgressors who have crossed sometimes invisible boundaries.
True, the larger, preexisting patriarchy plays a pivotal role in Oceans of Passion, Heavy Kissing, but this type of intervention and meddling was no doubt part of the harsh and complicated cultural realities faced by modern couples in Shanghai in the 1920s. Older forms and norms are quite clearly seen in negotiation with modern forms. Give-and-take ensues. Qiping is dominated by his old-fashioned mother, but he finally develops a backbone and rejects her advice in the end. Lijun’s mother is a major actor in the crisis, but she supports her emotionally starved daughter, agrees to the modern-style divorce, and consents to the cohabitation arrangement with Mengtian.
Blue Velvet (BFI Modern Classics) by Michael Atkinson