- I really much preferred the old Hollywood studio system, when movie stars were forced to live on the film lot, almost like slaves, provided with uppers and downers to keep up their productivity, and basically kept and fed like very expensive, extremely talented veal. After their usefulness had been exhausted, they were let go from their contracts, many of them eventually going mad, killing themselves or each other, and dying in poverty and obscurity. All in all, a sound and just system. [via]
- The Siren wants an Oscar ceremony so stuffed with old-movie clips that the fanboy contingent chokes on their Cheetos. She wants tributes, she wants high-flown overwritten paeans, she wants audience reaction shots of dewy 20-year-old starlets looking puzzled as shit at the sight of Janet Gaynor.
- This is actually Nick Nolte's third Oscar nomination! (For Warrior.) He was most recently snubbed for his work in Cats & Dogs: The Revenge of Kitty Galore.
- At my age it's very difficult to follow The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo. Facts refuse to cohere, statistics are my only refuge. After my second viewing of David Fincher and Steven Zaillan's adaptation of some Swedish novel, I was able to put together numbers that come close to representing the whole. Don't see the movie, just read this list. You'll save over two hours of your life, and when an enterprising detective asks if you have ever witnessed a rape, you'll be able to truthfully say, "Only metaphorically."
- While directors, producers, buyers and sellers bemoaned the inclusion of certain films, they mostly bewailed the exclusion of others, among them Leonard Retel Helmrich’s “Position Among the Stars,” which had won the festival’s top prize the year before.
- Crying is one of the great pleasures of moviegoing, but tears can be cheap. Much depends on your personal triggers, how you respond to having them pulled, who’s working those triggers and for what reason.
- DVD watching tends to be a more fragmented experience, which suggests that a more fragmented form of film commentary might also be appropriate, whether this is in a spoken or printed form — and not in order to be lazy in a different fashion but in order to organize the material differently. Even though one could also argue that declining literacy and shortened attention spans have made extended analyses and arguments less desirable, it might make more sense to concede that there are also certain advantages and even gains in aiming for a mosaic approach.
- The manhunt takes her down the city’s mean streets, or at least the theme-park version thereof—call it Murderland—where she’s menaced by assorted (invariably non-white) scumbags and helped out by a friendly prostitute. In her nonstop voiceover, Stephanie observes, “Hookers always know things.”
- I don't dislike Heigl on principle, but it's all too easy to call out everything that's gone wrong with the romantic comedy in recent years by way of her filmography. Her characters apparently need to be subjected to a journey of humiliating comeuppance in order to win over/come around to their unlikely loves -- the rom-com as punishment fantasy.... Heigl and O'Mara snipe at each other with the sizzling chemistry of two people who can't wait to whip out their BlackBerries and check their email as soon as a take is over.
STATE OF THE ART
- Pretty much any book you want can, at least, be gotten from a library, and what was once in print can often be bought without too much difficulty. Movies, however, can’t be brought home on film; often, prints are hard to get and expensive to rent. Most towns don’t have movie theatres that show revivals, and there’s a significant cost to making transfers to video.
- 1. THOMAS KINKADE HAS WON AND WE, ALL OF US, HAVE LOST
I have a problem with a lot of modern cinema. I don't like the way most of it looks, I don't like the way it's edited (too choppy and frenetic) and I don't like the way it's acted (so painfully naturalistic that a wide range of performances are thoroughly interchangeable). And I have that feeling with a frighteningly high percentage of modern movies. But mostly, I have a problem with the way the movies look. And when I say I have a problem, I mean even with movies I like. We all know I don't like CGI very much (I even do a series on special effects before CGI took over) and this is a big problem because it's now everywhere, in practically all movies.
- Follow these guidelines and soon everyone will know that you -- YOU, Mr. Film Industry Person Who Apparently Doesn't Actually Enjoy Watching Films -- are a thoughtless cretin with no regard for anyone but himself. Congratulations! See you at Cannes!
- In conjunction with the Gregg Museum’s spring exhibition, "Barkcloth, Bras and Bulletproof Cotton:the Powers of Costume," Skip Elsheimer from A/V Geeks presents a film program called Clothing Makes The..., an evening of short films about clothing and fashion and how they affect the wearer.
The program will include:
Replay – the Arrow Shirt Company embraces hippies
Twenty Dollar Miracle – a brief history of dresses and how they got so cheap
Fur Coat Club – two little girls with a fur fetish explore New York City
The short films program coincides with the publication release of Learning with the Lights Off: Educational Film in the United States, edited by Devin Orgeron, Marsha Orgeron and Dan Streible, who will be on hand with copies of the book to autograph.
- On the special features you can watch Kevin Corrigan tell a LITERALLY AMAZING story about meeting Robert DeNiro when he was 16.
- Only once does he mention writing his own scene, a powerfully emotional reunion scene between the story’s hero, Wesley, and his true love, Buttercup. But it’s not in the book, Goldman explains, because the publisher wouldn’t allow him to put words into the great Morgenstern’s mouth. Goldman does, however, tell the reader that they can get the scene he wrote mailed to them if they write to the book’s publisher, Harcourt Brace Jovanovich. Thousands of people dutifully wrote in, who helped oblige Goldman in his trickery and multi-level storytelling. Because nobody ever got that scene. Goldman certainly never wrote one, but that wasn’t the point. The point is that, if you wrote in to HBJ (and later, Random House), you got a funny letter perpetuating the Goldman “character” and Morgenstern charade…and never the reunion scene.
- I enjoy these strange and possibly creepy videos, although I'm not entirely sure why — there's something weirdly special about memorializing a child's untimely death with clips of her sliding across the floor in a football helmet or staring round-eyed into strobing TV static. As camp artifacts they're unbeatable, but occasionally music and image collide just right and I get a little choked up, despite myself.
- "A friend once told me that he thought — knew, actually — that Alan Ruck's character Cameron was obviously fucking Ferris' girlfriend behind his back. Next time you see the move, pay close attention to Cameron and Sloane. You'll never unsee it."
- Here is a moment where the familiar verdict of America’s best-known film critics suddenly becomes unfamiliar and strange, turned back on itself. Hung out to dry, Siskel and Ebert’s two thumbs flutter like lost signifiers, retrofitted to give power to that which they denounce.
- Q. At the end of the movie, Winona’s character ends up with Troy after a tortured courtship. If the movie was made today, would that still happen? Or would she end up with Ben Stiller’s ambitious TV executive?A. You just hit the nail on the head. That movie was probably one of the last moments when the girl makes the decision to go with the poor, self-serious dude. A theme of the movie is how money and corporate thinking was taking over everything.
Today, I don’t think there’s a chance in hell they would end that movie with her and Troy together. The definition of integrity has changed. Now, if a person — or a movie — makes a lot of money, then it’s got integrity.
THAT FESTIVAL, IN THE MOUNTAINS. YOU KNOW.
- Delpy: I see movies with people and they’re like, late 30s, and they’re talking about problems of people that are like 25. “This is a movie of people in their late 30s?” No one has a kid. No one is involved. No one has the complication of a life with children. And all my friends around me, that’s all they have, and they’re in their late 30s. And I see movies of people in their late 30s —
Rock: Or early 40s.
Delpy: And they have the problems of teenagers. I don’t even know people of 25 who have those problems.
Rock: What was that movie? She’s Just Not Into You? [sic] All of you guys are like, 35, at least. And you have high school problems. “She won’t call!” Huh? What? What are you talking about?
- "I feel like Keith Richards," she said, laughing.
- I didn’t even tell you the part where Hanna, after walking across the desert, shows up at some old man’s hotel, and he’s talking to her in English but finally she asks where she is, and he tells her, and then she starts speaking Arabic, and he’s like “you speak Arabic?” and she’s like “of course,” and then he turns on the TV and she goes “WHAT IS THAT?!” and he’s like “just some stupid show,” but we know she meant THE TELEVISION ITSELF, which she’s never even heard of! And he turns on a light and she’s like “is this…electricity?” and he’s like “yeah!” and she goes, “it was discovered by Benjamin Franklin” and he’s like “oh I don’t know. Some American probably.” It’s so good. It’s like Hanna understands the physics and the entire history of electricity but has never seen it before. Unfortunately that old man gets killed though (not by Hanna).
- There’s one scene where people in the audience ACTUALLY SCREAMED, and one of the people screaming was me! “NO! DON’T DO IT TOM CRUISE IT’S TOO HIGH!!!!” He jumps off the top of the highest building in the world, some stupid thing in Dubai, and he flies out in an arc and you can see his body outlined against the impossible-far-below-rest-of-the-city, and it’s like, bananas. Later I found out via a lost bet with Claire that TOM CRUISE LITERALLY DID THAT STUNT. I can’t believe this was allowed! What if that’s how Tom Cruise died? That would be AMAZING.
- Wilhelm Scream!