|Frame grab image of Lina Romay in Jess Franco's Les possédées du diable/Exorcism (1974)|
Serge Daney distinguishes between love of cinema and passion for cinema. The latter state concerns the expressive evolution and refinement of the art, typified by the work, one might suppose, of such singular giants as Godard, Dreyer and Garrel. Love of cinema, on the other hand, is fetishistic, stemming from contentment with the medium as it already is. In the acceptance speech [Jess] Franco made on receiving his honorary lifetime achievement Goya award this February , he described himself as simply ‘a man in love with cinema'. Perhaps nowhere better than in Jess Franco's oeuvre is ‘love of cinema' embodied. Yet complacency is hardly the first quality one associates with Franco's often defiantly free, personal and gloriously extreme riffs on familiar B cinema patterns. The fevered mirror he holds up to cinema reveals not a static museum of ossified formulas but a rich arsenal of figurative possibilities. Jess Franco is cinema- cinema in all its crassness, vulgarity, brutality, puerility, vitality, invention, wonder, joy, eroticism, poetry, violence, bizarreness, obsessiveness, mystery. And, of course, addictiveness. [Maximilian Le Cain, Editorial, Experimental Conversations, Spring 2009]Film Studies For Free was muy triste when it heard the news that Spanish horror cinema maestro Jess Franco has died today, following a stroke last week.
It will be gathering tributes and links in memory of Franco's amazing film career over the next days, starting with the ones below. So do please come back for more as the below lists get longer.
- David Hudson, 'Jess Franco, 1930 – 2013', KeyFrame Daily at Fandor, April 2, 2013
- Tim Lucas, 'Jesús "Jess" Franco (May 12, 1930 - April 2, 2013)', Tim Lucas Video Watch Blog, April 4, 2013
- Maximilian Le Cain, 'The Frontiers of Genre and Trance: Five Films by Jess Franco', Senses of Cinema, 27, 2003
- Maximilian Le Cain, Editorial, Experimental Conversations, Spring 2009
- John Exshaw, 'Jess Franco, or The Misfortunes of Virtue', Irish Journal of Gothic and Horror Studies, issue 1, 2006
- Lindsay Hallam, 'Whips and Bodies: The Sadean Cinematic Text', Senses of Cinema, 30, 2004
- Joan Hawkins, 'Culture wars: some new trends in art horror', Jump Cut, No. 51, spring 2009
- Ira Konigsberg, 'How Many Draculas Does It Take to Change a Lightbulb?', in Horton, Andrew, Play it again, Sam: retakes on remakes. Berkeley: University of California Press, 1998
- Erich Kuersten, 'Time Travel for Amnesiacs: SUCCUBUS and the Moebius Love Strip', Acidemic: A Journal of Film and Media, Issue 4, 2008
- Antonio Lázaro-Reboll, 'Daring cycles: the Towers–Franco collaboration, 1968–70', New Review of Film and Television Studies, 11.1, 2013
- John Marmysz, 'The Cutting Edge Between Trash Cinema and High Art', Film-Philosophy, 6.8, 2002
- Donato Totaro, 'The Case of Jesús Franco', Offscreen, 2011
- Glenn Ward, Journeys into perversion: vision, desire and economies of transgression in the films of Jess Franco, Doctoral thesis, University of Sussex, 2011