How long, Lord, how long?
Or will we ever be free of the curse of Cahiers du Cinema magazine that has brainwashed movie reviewers to believe that theme, story, dialogue--in short, everything , in a movie springs from the head of the Great God DIRECTOR?
Michael Wilmington begins his review of "Opera do Malandro" by telling us that "writer-director Ruy Guerra has a fascinating idea: making a Brazilian "Threepenny Opera," transplanting the old Brecht-Weill ambiance to Rio de Janeiro and the malandros underworld of the early '40s" (" 'Opera do Malandro': A Bit of Glitz With Grit," March 26).'
Sure, he did, Michael: Just as John Huston had the fascinating idea of making a film musical about a '30s and '40s comic strip character named Orphan Annie; just as Richard Attenborough had the fascinating idea of making a film musical in which dancers at a play audition tell about their lives in dance (let's call it "A Chorus Line," OK?); just as Milos Forman had the fascinating idea of making a film about the envy of a mediocre composer named Salieri toward the composer whose middle name was Amadeus. . . .