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David Poland

By David Poland

Yes, The New Yorker

There are three absolute movie must-reads in the November 22 edition of The New Yorker.

Malcolm Gladwell’s piece about what constitutes plagiarism and just what is theft of intellectual content and what is not is one of the most important pieces I’ve read in a long time.  Gladwell and the New Yorker were perhaps-victims of a perhaps-theft by the author of the Broadway play, Frozen.  Yet, he manages to offer both his personal perspective and a journalistic one.  Tremendous piece.

David Denby’s long piece on Almodovar gets Almodovar better and more completely than anything else I have read on the filmmaker.  It was time for perspective on Almodovar’s career and Denby hits it out of the park.

And Anthony Lane, who generally pisses me off for having more interest in being clever than in discussing film, examines the story behind Finding Neverland.  And much like Gladwell, he offers both an excellent piece of reporting as well as some personal perspective on J.M. Barrie’s history.  He does take sides, but there is more than enough in the piece for you to decide how you feel for yourself. 

It’s the issue with the Barbara Bush-looking woman in an elevator, staring up at “Floor 4, Men’s Dresses.”  I think the cartoon edition has replaced this one on newsstands.  But it would be worth the effort to track it down.  Sorry I didn’t offer this up earlier…

UPDATE SUNDAY:  Thanks to Marc Weisblott for pointing us to’s New Yorker database with links to each of the stories above.

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“I remember very much the iconography and the images and the statues in church were very emotional for me. Just the power of that, and even still — just seeing prayer card, what that image can evoke. I have a lot of friends that are involved in the esoteric, and I know some girls in New York that are also into the supernatural. I don’t feel that I have that gift. But I am leaning towards mysticism… Maybe men are more practical, maybe they don’t give into that as much… And then also, they don’t convene in the same way that women do. But I don’t know, I am not a man, I don’t want to speak for men. For me, I tend to gravitate towards people who are open to those kinds of things. And the idea for my film, White Echo, I guess stemmed from that — I find that the girls in New York are more credible. What is it about the way that they communicate their ideas with the supernatural that I find more credible? And that is where it began. All the characters are also based on friends of mine. I worked with Refinery29 on that film, and found that they really invest in you which is so rare in this industry.”
Chloë Sevigny

“The word I have fallen in love with lately is ‘Hellenic.’ Greek in its mythology. So while everyone is skewing towards the YouTube generation, here we are making two-and-a-half-hour movies and trying to buck the system. It’s become clear to me that we are never going to be a perfect fit with Hollywood; we will always be the renegade Texans running around trying to stir the pot. Really it’s not provocation for the sake of being provocative, but trying to make something that people fall in love with and has staying power. I think people are going to remember Dragged Across Concrete and these other movies decades from now. I do not believe that they will remember some of the stuff that big Hollywood has put out in the last couple of years. You’ve got to look at the independent space to find the movies that have been really special recently. Even though I don’t share the same world-view as some of my colleagues, I certainly respect the hell out of their movies which are way more fascinating than the stuff coming out of the studio system.”
~ Dallas Sonnier