in re: the claim that operas provide a paradigm against which oliver stone's
cinematic revisitings of history might be measured, please to observe that
opera composers for sure [and my guess is shakepeare as well] USED history as
the premise for military choruses and love duets [or engrossing drama and
flights of language] but were NOT concerned with revising history
stone surely IS concerned with revising history . . . his movies care as much
about what kenneth burke called the "psychology of information" as about the
"psychology of form," what we--in more innocent days--used to refer to as the
the conventional western is really the kind of film that does to [usa] history
what verdi did to [italian] history . . .
stone is doing something quite different . . .
. . . this is not to criticise stone's work at all, merely to point out what
standards ought to be applied if one wants to criticise it
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