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Eating Raoul

I’ve been hearing about this movie seemingly my entire life, but I’ve never gotten a handle on what this is supposed to be. That is, I’ll be reading an interview with somebody, and they’ll be mentioning this movie, and everybody agrees that it’s genius. But I’ve never seen it, and I’ve never looked the film up on the interwebs.

But while doing some shopping on the Criterion web shop I saw this and bought it, and now I’m watching it.


… I realise that I thought that this movie was directed by the guy in Cold Souls:

I.e., Paul Giamatti, but that’s because if the beard and because the director was called Barthes. Not Bartel.

Is everybody as confused about everything, or is it just me?

Anyway, roll film.

Heh heh — this is some John Waters-like kinda thing?

And… this blu ray is in 16:9, but nothing was shot in 16:9, so Criterion has mangled the film!?

Yeah, it was 1.85:1 originally… they’ve cut the edges! Shame! Shame!

Huh, I just checked the liner notes — they claim that the original aspect ratio was 1.78:1 (i.e., 16:9)? I’d like to believe them, but… it would be a really unusual aspect ratio for 1982. Like really.


OK, this is more broad comedy than John Waters — it’s not unlike, say, Airplane? But a bit more… more.

It’s funny. But it’s… it’s kinda choppy? The jokes come at you fast, but then there are pauses where you’re just going “hm” while enjoying the, er, acting… It’s like… a bigger budget, straight, studio version of John Waters. I.e., a lot slower and less insane.

Hey! That’s the guy from Star Trek!

It really is the Star Trek guy.

I guess this is the type of film you should be really stoned to watch? And then everything would just be getting funnier and funnier… But unfortunately, I’m not, and I’m just getting bored with this. I mean, the funny bits are genius, but the movie lacks zip.

I kinda want to give this a because of the concept, but the movie really, really drags, so it’s really more of a film. So I’m going with:

Eating Raoul. Paul Bartel. 1982.

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