violentsaturdays said: Funny you should say that, Shutter Island rips a lot from Spasmo; another Lenzi giallo.
Yeah…I’ve found that Scorsese, Friedkin, Allen, Altman and others of the New Hollywood generation have at least been honest about who they stole from (GoodFellas is put together from bits and pieces of Baron’s Blast of Silence, and Scorsese even made that four-hour documentary of himself just sitting there talking about who ‘influenced’ him). A lot of it has to do with film criticism at the time too: Critics like Pauline Kael and Dave Kehr had actually seen and understood films, and would call out the filmmakers for theft.
Kubrick is big culprit. Everyone hailed him as a genius, but he stole from giallo and westerns like everyone else. Several shots in 2001 are lifted directly from Bava’s Blood and Black Lace. The ‘all work and no play makes Jack a dull boy’ scene in The Shining is a total ripoff of the ‘vendetta’ scene from Martino’s Your Vice is a Locked Room and Only I Have the Key. American audiences and critics today don’t know this because they’ve never seen Blood and Black Lace or Your Vice -because it’s giallo and European and dismissed as trash.
These days, when pretty much anyone anywhere with internet access can become a ‘film critic’ without having seen anything, the current generation of overrated ‘artistic’ Hollywood directors can get away with theft much more often. Aronofsky’s Black Swan is really just an angry teenager’s version of Powell’s The Red Shoes. Large portions of Refn’s Drive -which critics and audiences roundly hailed as a masterpiece- are straight-up stolen from Walter Hill’s The Driver. Nolan steals from everybody: Audiences and critics were very satisfied with themselves when they pointed out that the opening of Nolan’s The Dark Knight was stolen from the robbery sequences in Michael Mann’s Heat -but really it’s stolen from the opening of Zulawski’s L’amour braque, which predates Heat by ten years. Again, American audiences and critics don’t know any of this because they’ve never seen The Red Shoes, The Driver, or L’amour braque.
Maybe it’s a failure of film studies courses, or American audiences’ dismissal of anything made in Europe, or made before 1960, or made in a language that isn’t English. But the film vocabulary of audiences and critics today is badly limited, which only makes it easier for filmmakers to plagiarize and pass themselves off as ‘geniuses.’