last film about a brother, a famous writer, and sister, recently
divorced, both undergoing crisis of identity. 1984 (141m. Color)
Stars Gena Rowlands and John Cassavetes.
This is Cassavetes'
richest and most complex film, and the most painful to watch of
all his films (meaning almost unbearable). In her final performance
as the trademark Cassavetes crazy lady, Rowlands embodies the spirit
of romantic, self-sacrificing love in a world where such devotion
is neither honored nor wanted. Cassavetes is her alter ego, an almost
Satanic figure symbolizing nihilistic self-gratification. Cassavetes'
parting message to us: don't you be either of these people. -Anne
He says also: while caught
in a love stream, you may end drowned but the energy that goes with
it is worth the journey. we have strong feelings for both of them,
and somehow the idea that being any of them could be wrong and being
both of them some kind of an achievement.
Anybody who has ever loved
someone so desperately that they felt so stupid, proud, and confused
knows what John meant by Love Streams. Can you even imagine
how hard it was for him and Gena to even contiplate the end - after
thirty years. No one has ever truly 'captured' what love can be and
is and is not than John Cassavetes. Can you even imagine being loved
through, with, in a stream? I wish I had had the chance to meet them.
See all his movies -they will touch you in the most painful, frustrating,
and elating ways - ways you can never imagine. - KEM
For each seemingly reprehensible
act (abandoning a son, striking a wife) only the is represented,
is no isolated malice or evil present. Everyone has a humanity in
the film, no characters are left to suffer as cyphers. How many directors
could resist passing judgement on the stepfather or Seymour Cassell's
character? Their biggest crimes are shown to be humanely stupid.
more smaller reflections: I thought hawling a stubborn goat in out
of the storm was a very Greek depiction of male tenderness; and do
the final scenes in the storm make anyone else recast Cassavettes
as Noah in his hat and smock coat?- Anthony Dolphin
I saw this film. I will
not forget this film. I will see this film, tomorrow.
john shows that we are
solid like rocks, his charcators can hurl themselves into such emotionally
tumultous situations. But love, our spirituality is water - something
we can't get a handle or control. For me the film examines the differences
between different understandings of our world.- Felim Mac Dermott
I have only seen Love Streams
once, 15 years ago and I have yearned to view it again ever since.
i remember only one or two details from it. But the ugly crazy fun
thing that Cassavettes captured in most of his film efforts , in terms
of integrity superfreaks acting out their heartfelt and petty obsessions
right in front of each other and watching the characters be with each
act of selfishness and love, permenantly affected me. Life and films
are missing all that beauty. I hope to view this Masterpiece again
soon. Paolo Visentin
This was one of the first
"American Independent" films I remember seeing in its original theatrical
release, and I'm eternally grateful to the friend who dragged me kicking
and screaming to see it (it sounded dreadful to me, as described.)
Love Streams is one of those rare films that succeeds in expressing
verities about life and love that most of us feel are unexpressable,
but essential. Rowlands' characters musing about how Love Streams
continue even after the end of a relationship was, when I first saw
the movie as a very young man, an insight that both haunted and helped
me in later years. I'm sure we can all relate. Why then, are such
simple truths so rarely expressed with such naked honesty in American
films? One of the most frequent comments by lovers of Cassavetes'
ouvre is that his films are so "honest." Indeed, and that's why they'll
endure and continue to be rediscovered. When the movie was originally
released to VHS in the '80's, I rented it to show to some friends.
I was the only one remaining in the room by the end of the movie.
Nobody thought it was a poor film, rather, they were too disturbed
by its being "too close too home" for them to endure in the company
of others. Now that's effective art! (I think...) - Dean Estes
The picture of Gena Rowlands
unloading the taxi of its goats, sheep, and roosters, and Cassavetes
reaction, is one of the greatest moments in American film history.
I always think of the scene
where Cassavetes is drunk, hysterically laughing, alone, watching
the storm through slide glass doors... This is how I always pictured
him reading reviews.
Never have two hearts broken
more quietly, more devastatingly. My favorite Cassavetes films...
and my first.
To get grasped from a distance.
That means a most perfect acting which reveals its sources: the body,
the spirit, the soul. And this the viewer gets as a present. Nothing
more is possible. Theo Thiesmeier
GO BACK BIBLIOGRAPHY