Wednesday, September 24, 2008

The Poetry of Sound

Obviously the $50 I budgeted for Orestes and the Fly is inadequate.
So I've given myself a grant of... well, since it's essentially a theoretical grant, it amounts to whatever I need to buy what I need; and one thing I need is a microphone.
So, today I bought this one.

(Don't ask.)
. . .

Of filmmaking's many tasks, the one that scares me most is dealing with Sound.
To me, sound is like mercury--you can't get ahold of it. Further, I know nothing at all about sound technology.
I didn't even know what the mike would look like.

When I saw it, I was comforted.

My mike looks like a relative of the microphone the simple Mario uses in Il Postino (Italy, 1994).
When Pablo Neruda (Philippe Noiret) is briefly exiled on Mario's isolated island, Mario, who is practically invisble to the people around him, delivers the poet's post and dares to show him a bit of his soul.
When Neruda leaves, Mario uses his left-behind recorder to to record the sounds of his island.
(Massimo Troisi, who plays Mario, was a comic actor and himself a poet.)

Here's the scene, which I think is the heart of the movie:

If he can, so can I.


momo said...

The ending of the original movie The Fly (not the Cronenberg remake) is when the little fly-man is trapped in a spider's web, yelling "help me! help me" in a very high squeaky voice.

fresca said...

Oh. oh, oh, thank you for that--it was truly creepy!!!
I'd never seen it--and it had never occurred to me that if the man gets the Fly head, some fly got the Man head!
These old movies can be just as or more frightening as the more technically sophisticated modern ones.

"Invasion of the Body Snatchers" is another example. Though the studio insisted the director put a hopeful ending on it, it really ends with the hero yelling "They're here! They're here" on a dark highway, with no one listening...)

Maybe those movies are even scarier because they act out the fears of tidy-white 1950s America's underbelly, whereas nowadays, does anyone anywhere have the illusion of safety?