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1:39pm on Saturday, 7th October, 2006:

Do I Watch it?


Whenever people ask me to name my favourite three movies (and this is the sort of thing that happens more often than it should), I usually say Bringing Up Baby, A Room with a View and Céline et Julie Vont en Bateau.

A Room with a View is still shown fairly regularly on TV, and although it was made 21 years ago people are still familiar with it. Bringing Up Baby is a classic screwball comedy from 1938 which, although it isn't screened often nowadays, is nevertheless one with which some familiarity is not uncommon.

Oh, I should say that these movies are just my own favourites. I got a DVD of Bringing Up Baby for Christmas last year, and no-one else in the house could watch it all the way through...

Céline et Julie Vont en Bateau is not the kind of movie that many people of my acquaintance have seen, though. It's in French, it's 192 minutes long, and it was made in 1974. That said, it was the only movie that the University of Essex Film Society showed for three years in a row, breaking their rule of never showing anything for more than two consecutive years. I've seen it just once, though, and that was in 1978. It has been on TV, but at about 2am and I didn't find out until the next day anyway so missed videoing it.

I've since tried to obtain a copy from various Internet stores, but to no avail.

Last week, though, The Independent had a piece on the 50 best online retailers. One of them was MovieMail, and its write-up was illustrated with an image I recognised even though it's 28 years since I last saw it. I sent off for a copy of Céline and Julie Go Boating, and today it arrived:

Now the question is, do I watch it? Or are my memories of it going to prove better than the reality?

I don't want another Florence...

PS: If I'm asked for a fourth favourite, I go with Groundhog Day.

Referenced by No, Just Worlds.

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Copyright © 2006 Richard Bartle (richard@mud.co.uk).