Derrida

If you think 85 minutes devoted to a difficult French philosopher is bound to be either abstruse or watered-down, think again: offscreen interlocutor Amy Ziering Kofman, a former student of Jacques Derrida, collaborating with codirector Kirby Dick, has worked out a very accessible and unpretentious way of conveying both the philosophy and likable personality of her subject. There’s an admirable effort to interconnect the banal facts of his everyday life with his philosophical inquiries without being coy or fussy about it. Following Derrida around in a variety of circumstances (lecturing, visiting South Africa, chatting with friends), this 2002 documentary explores some aspects of his difficult childhood as a Jew in Algeria as well as his philosophy, with his excellent English frequently coming into play to clarify or amplify his subtitled French. (JR)

Published on 01 Jun 2002 in Featured Texts, by admin

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Pat And Mike

One of the better Spencer Tracy and Katharine Hepburn comedies (1952, 95 min.)not so much for the screenplay by Garson Kanin and Ruth Gordon, which lacks the bite and sophistication of Adam’s Rib, as for the relaxed and graceful interplay of the stars. Tracy’s a hustling trainer who grooms Hepburn’s gifted gym teacher to be the world’s greatest woman athlete. George Cukor directed; with Aldo Ray and Jim Backus. (JR)

Published on 01 Jun 2002 in Featured Texts, by admin

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