Erich Von Stronheim
Guy Lochhead, 11/02/12
Austrian actor and filmmaker notorious as a fantasist who created massive-budget, massive-scale film epics. It’s hard to know too much about him because he made a lot of stuff up (he pretended to be of aristocratic descent when emigrating to America, faked forgetting German and filled his biography with lies). He refused to adapt his ambition to the rules of the Hollywood System and is perhaps most well-known for making a ten-hour film called ‘Greed’. This film was later cut with and without his consent, and the lost footage was binned by a janitor. I love the sound of this guy! But he was also probably a bit of an arsehole… Many of Von Stroheim’s films have been lost or destroyed, but many of them don’t sound that unique either… Greed seems like the epitome of his tendencies, though it also sounds unique enough to be watched before it is judged. I will do so and then probably update this write-up. I’ll write about it individually… I’m sort of overwhelmed by the whole thing really, though I love it as an example of all the stupid hypocrisies and misguidedness of the art industries, and of one person living by his terms and subverting celebrity out of sheer bullheadedness.

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