Friday, October 3, 2014

Love Streams

One of two pieces I wrote recently about John Cassavetes' not-quite-swan song, his masterpiece Love Streams. An excerpt:

The film’s title alludes to an idea Sarah has as she reels from losing her family, a notion that “love is a stream; it’s continuous, it doesn’t stop.” If it does not stop, however, it can slow and divert like a stream, and contrary to the feverishly over-complicated efforts of Sarah to push love forward and Robert’s own attempt to dam it, it will always take the path of least resistance. At its heart, the film is a comedy: in an oeuvre filled with all-time classic drunk scenes, the sequence of Cassevetes throwing himself in the car of club singer Susan (Diahnne Abbot), driving to her place, crashing, then being unable to get out of the vehicle is a mini-masterpiece. The physicality of Cassavetes’ acting in this moment could be a precursor for Leonardo DiCaprio’s ‘luude scene in The Wolf of Wall Street: Robert turns into an assembly of arms and legs all connected to a mass of nerves without an organizing brain, and about the only thing he accomplishes as he tries to get out of the car is to cause noise, from leaving the door open until an alarm goes off to flipping on the radio and sending jazz blaring around the neighborhood.

Read the rest at Spectrum Culture.

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