Re: RARA-AVIS: Mediterranean Noir on TV - Manuel Vasquez Montalban and Andrea Camilleri (was: French stuff)

From: Cinefrog (
Date: 16 Dec 2002

on 12/14/02 7:59 AM, Etienne Borgers at wrote:

> Steve,
> There was two series with Pepe Carvalho for TV. I saw only the latest one,
> mid 2002, a set of 5 TVfilms (1h30 each) made by Spanish TV with the help
> of co-productions (French and maybe some others). Some were filmed in
> Barcelona, the Spanish city so important for Carvalho (and for Manuel
> Vasquez Montalban, his creator).
> It was programmed by Arte (French/German cultural channel, as you probably
> know), but the promotion was badly done: practically no announcements and
> aired around midnight! Maybe they consider it was not for everyone's taste
> due to the noirish tendencies of Carvalho and his stories? It was like if
> they did not know what to do with this series.
> The films are lacking the intensity of the books, but the Spanish actor
> playing Carvalho IMO was well chosen. The realization of the films were not
> always adequate and some scenarios were really weak. But in the series I
> saw at least one film was very good, and another one not far from it. So,
> very mixed feelings for the series.
> Let us hope better things for the future of this offbeat PI on TV.
> Speaking of TV serials, Italian TV is programming a series of TVfilms based
> on the books by Andrea Camilleri (Italian-Sicilian writer) with his
> Sicilian "commissaire"… Sergio Montalbano. As you probably know, the name
> given to Camilleri's cop is a tribute to M. V. Montalban that Camilleri
> admires a lot.
> But here the choice of the actor playing Montalbano was not very adequate
> physically. As my knowledge of Italian is reduced I could not follow a
> complete film, but the cinematography seemed to be too pedestrian to
> translate correctly the book.
> IMO it's not so easy to translate noirish ambiance into film images under
> sunny climates… Requires some talent from the director; professionalism is
> not enough.
> E.Borgers
> Hard-Boiled Mysteries

Merci and gracias for all this....very interesting and I'll ask some spanish friends if they've got some tapes...and I'm very curious about the italian series...

merci again


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