Friday, May 18, 2018

"Heaven's Gate" rollerskating

Stuck like some loop tape in my head this morning is the roller-skating scene from the 1980 western, "Heaven's Gate," an infuriatingly-bad and yet somehow-hypnotizing movie I plugged into yesterday and couldn't stop watching despite a certainty that it was largely historical eyewash. On the face of it, the movie is a cattle-barons-face-off-against-immigrant-farmers tale. I didn't realize until later that the director was the same guy, Michael Cimino, who made "The Deer Hunter," a wowser of a movie focusing on the Vietnam war era. Sometimes I just roll over and play dead for a fiction I purely want to be fact.

The roller-skating scene is hard to excise in its fullness ... the Pied Piper cherubic face of the fiddler, everyone in a gigantic building out west in the 1890's, the colonization of the west, the ebullient enjoyment of the immigrants, and finally, I suppose, the fact that I am a sucker for waltzes. I don't care if it's not true in a hundred ways ... I want it to be true and am willing to set aside my incredulity for ... for ... for an immersion I am certain not everyone can or would accede to.

For all that, here is a cut of the scene (short ad first, sorry) followed by a subsequent solo waltz by two of the main characters.

And, now that I've noted it, perhaps I can move on to something-completely-different....

1 comment:

  1. The roller skate scene out of context just makes me wonder how the scene was shot and edited.

    Kind of like learning how the scenes in Lassie were created, each scene required trainers and assistants on ladders holding up pieces of meat that actually held the dogs’ attention. I never realized that a given episode used more than a single collie.