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Related: forties

Key work of art: Cinq Femmes (1942) - Francis Picabia

Films: Casablanca (1942)

Births: Joe Bataan - Michael Haneke - Dan Graham - Peter Greenaway - Jimi Hendrix - Martin Scorsese - Marc Moulin - Werner Herzog - Derek Jarman - Erica Jong - Milton Nascimiento - Erika Blanc - Joe Boyd - Roy Stuart - Piero Gilardi

Deaths: Robert Musil - Bruno Schulz - Franz Boas - Stefan Zweig

The Magnificent Ambersons (1942) - Jack Moss, Robert Wise

The Magnificent Ambersons (1942) - Jack Moss, Robert Wise [Amazon.com] [FR] [DE] [UK]

Citizen Kane is considered by many to be Orson Welles's masterpiece, but more than a few prominent critics have argued that his second film, 1942's The Magnificent Ambersons, is an even greater artistic achievement. It's certainly the source of the most painful injustice of Welles's brief career in Hollywood, having been seized from the director's control, drastically cut from over two hours to merely 88 minutes, and reshot with a different, upbeat ending that Welles vehemently disapproved of. Adapted by Welles from the novel by Booth Tarkington, it remains a truncated masterpiece, as impressive for what remains as for the even greater film it might have been. The story is set during the late 19th century and follows the rise and fall of the wealthy Amberson family of Indianapolis, Indiana. Central to the drama is George Amberson Minafer (Tim Holt), who is snobbishly to the manor born, and whose petty jealousies and truculent pride compel him to prevent a wealthy inventor (Joseph Cotten) from marrying his widowed mother (Dolores Costello). This in part is the cause of the Ambersons' downfall, and ultimately leads to George's humbling "comeuppance" at the film's dramatic conclusion. It's an absorbing tale of fading traditions and changing times, and it's also a magnificent showcase for Welles's cinematic audacity, famous among film students for its long, fluid shots and ambitious compositions. Responding to the film's drastic cutting and re-editing, Welles justifiably complained that "they destroyed the heart of the film, really." And yet, the director's stamp of genius is evident throughout--the work of a young master (Welles was only 26 when the film was made) that still shines despite its unfortunate fate. --Jeff Shannon

The Stranger (1942) - Albert Camus

The Stranger (1942) - Albert Camus [Amazon.com] [FR] [DE] [UK]

First sentence:

"Maman died today..."

Aujourd'hui, maman est morte. Ou peut-être hier, je ne sais pas. J'ai reçu un télégramme de l'asile : « Mère décédée. Enterrement demain. Sentiments distingués. » Cela ne veut rien dire. C'était peut-être hier.

The Stranger, also translated as The Outsider, (the original French version is called L'Étranger) (1942) is a novel by Albert Camus.

The Plot
The novel tells the story of an alienated man, who eventually commits a murder and waits to be executed for it. The book uses an Algerian setting, drawn from Camus' own upbringing.

At the start of the novel, Meursault goes to his mother's funeral, where he does not express any emotions and is basically unaffected by it. The novel continues to document the next few days of his life through the first person point-of-view. In these days, he befriends one of his neighbors, Raymond Sintes. He aids Sintes in getting revenge on a woman he was involved with. Later, the two confront the woman's brother ("the Arab") on a beach and Sintes gets cut in the resulting knife fight. Meursault afterwards goes back to the beach and shoots the Arab five times.

At the trial, the prosecution focuses on the inability or unwillingness of Meursault to cry at his mother's funeral, considered suspect by the authorities. The killing of the Arab apparently is less important than whether Meursault is capable of remorse. The argument follows that if Meursault is incapable of remorse, he should be considered a dangerous misanthrope and subsequently executed to prevent him from doing it again, and by executing, make him an example to those considering murder. --http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Stranger_%28novel%29 [Aug 2005]

see also: misanthropy - alienation - literature - France

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