Monday 6 February 2023

Vale Bob Garlick - Cinephile, early MUFS activist, Collaborator with Giorgio Mangiamele - Peter Hourigan pays tribute

As an old comrade said, this means we're moving up the list.

Here is Peter's terrific tribute with a few thoughts of my own at the foot of it.


                      The early sixties are often looked back on as the period when a new, energetic Cinéphilia emerged in Australia, and Melbourne is often considered as a crucial place for this emergence, especially around the Melbourne University Film Society. I was probably in the right place at the right time, and my own Cinéphilia was shaped by that period.

                      MUFS was an enfant terrible championing Hawks, Ford, Hitchcock and even Jerry Lewis. But its activities in that period didn’t come from nowhere, but emerged from an already active and alive film society on the Melbourne University  campus.

                      Robert (Bob) Garlick was very much part of pre-generation, if I can coin that term. His death, at 85, has just been announced.  When I reached university and  became involved with MUFS, Bob had already completed his law degree and was no longer so active in MUFS. However, he was involved with the University Film Group, the society which  operated as a Film Society for graduates especially people who’d been active in MUFS and had pioneered many of the operations of MUFS. 

                     Bob Garlick kept his involvement with uni. Cinephilia through UFG, contributing articles on various films. Perhaps some of his taste seemed old fashioned to the “young turks” of the early sixties MUFS -  Eisenstein, or British cinema such as Paul Rotha would endorse or the French cinema then starting to be rejected as “le cinema de Papa”. . Not that these weren’t worthy, we’d just latched on to newer, younger cinema. 

                      In the story of Cinéphilia, it is important that we remember the people who created the conditions and the enthusiasm that the new explosion in which the new attitudes to film could flourish. Bob Garlick was very much part of that. He may not have been involved much after the early sixties, but he was part of the years that laid those important foundations for what was coming. 

                     Ultimately Bob’s cultural interests developed more strongly in Classical Music – Wagner and Berlioz were special areas of interest. 

                    Curiously, MUFS was not where I’d first met Bob. Way back before, both his family and mine lived in Mildura.  His mother and mine were friends and involved in such activities as the local book group. Several times when they’d get together, I would meet Bob. But he was six years older than me, and at that stage that meant we had very little in common until we met again at MUFS/UFG.


Thanks for that Peter

Editors Note:I was going to add another set of memories that all came flooding back but I'm just putting in the key words 

Bob Garlick....awesome presence... Labor politician....union critic..MUFS... Jim Merralls...Film Journal... massive admirer of Bergman, Visconti and all the other 'operatic' directors...Relf... Brian Davies.... Carlton Street houses.....most stirring memory, a rousing speech at a MUFS AGM to repel the John Helmer led forces of darkness who wanted to ban Jerry Lewis, return us to Eisenstein and claimed to have seen the films of Hank Lennon....Giorgio Mangiamele and Beyond Reason...high achiever..... Vale

No comments:

Post a Comment

Note: only a member of this blog may post a comment.