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All that Jazz (1979)
All that work. All that glitter. All that pain. All that love. All that crazy rhythm. All that jazz.
Director: Bob Fosse
Drama

Joe Gideon is at the top of the heap, one of the most successful directors and choreographers in musical theater. But he can feel his world slowly collapsing around him - his obsession with work has almost destroyed his personal life, and only his bottles of pills keep him going.

All that Jazz (1979)

Your Death

Having just watched an energetic, colourful film on the overlap between life and death, I had to revisit this one from my past. It was one of my early experiences in folded narrative:

• a film about a man written and directed by that very man, bent to create a fictitious persona.

• a film about a life and death presented as a choreographed dance, bent toward traditional stage presentations previously bent from story to song and dance.

• a film predicting the filmmaker’s death and placing us in that future, bending creative death into what we assume is creative life.

• a film about women worshipping a man who manipulates and abuses them.

• a film about audience, with the filmmaker’s then lover Jessica Lange as his angel.

It is visual but not cinematic. It works in the first part, until he ran out of money. Then for the “Bye Bye” finale, he got a huge budget, and the thing gets tiresome. In other words, we are willing to participate in the show, but not the life.

Posted in 2011

Ted’s Evaluation — 2 of 3: Has some interesting elements.

IMDB

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