Nice to see that a Cassavetes community has formed. I've been a fan for about ten years, and I first sought out his films purely because he was this IMPORTANT FILMMAKER that everyone praised as a genius, but it was difficult to find someone who actually knew the films. I started with SHADOWS, then FACES, then A WOMAN UNDER THE INFLUENCE. I'd say that my appreciation increased exponentially with each film, and by WOMAN I was in complete awe. To this day, when the subject of favourite actors comes up, I'm quick to name Peter Falk.
Speaking of Falk, two films that deserve special mention -- HUSBANDS, which I love so much that I freak out every time I see it, and MIKEY & NICKY, which is actually an Elaine May film that stars Cassavetes and Falk. I wouldn't recommend a newcomer start with HUSBANDS, as it's better appreciated when you've seen these actors work together in a couple of other films first. One of the things I really love about JC's films are the fairly consistent ensemble. Shooting movies in his own house with his wife and his friends gave them that "Labour of Love" stamp that you just can't fake.
If any one is interested the web site that seems to be the most definitive on Cassavetes is:http://people.bu.edu/rcarney/cassavetes/
It's by a guy by the name of Ray Carney. He's written several good books on Cassavetes and his films. Really inspirational, and informative stuff. If you get a chance check it out.
So I just made this place, and I'm sure it'll grow in time. If anybody is good with layouts, I'd love to let you spiffy it up.
Well, what to say. I heard a cool story about John Cassavetes. While he was filming Faces, he ran into a young Steven Spielberg, and asked him what he wanted to be when he grew up. Steven said "a director." So John let him direct Faces for a day. Later, Steven Spielberg became a household name in mainstream cinema, but I like to think he'll always remember the fiercely independent director that believed in him.
Also, I highly recommend the Cassavetes: Five Films criterion set. It's gorgeous, and you won't be able to stop watching it for weeks. It has Shadows, Faces, A Woman Under the Influence, the Killing of a Chinese Bookie, and my personal favorite, Opening Night. I wish they had included Minnie and Moskowitz or Gloria, though.
I'm glad you're here. This director is criminally overlooked. Or maybe it's just easier for normal audiences to not experience the gut-grabbing velocity of his films. Either way, let's make him a household word again. I love him. Current Mood: alright