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Ray Pride

By Ray Pride Pride@moviecitynews.com

The forthright Sarah Polley directs: could she make a Battle of Algiers?

“As a director, [Sarah] Polley is a rarity because of her youth,” writes Kira Cochrane in the Guardian, “but also because of her gender. She recounts the story of a friend, “an incredibly intelligent woman, who was making a film, and was meeting quite a famous actor about it. The actor eventually turned her down, saying, ‘I’m just used to working with people who are more like mad visionaries.’ I thought that was interesting, because, in fact, we’re still at a point where women aren’t allowed to be mad visionaries. SPolley2798773a.jpgWe have to prove beyond a shadow of a doubt that we’re responsible, that we can handle it, that we’ve got all our ducks in a row … most women who direct always come in on budget, always come in on schedule, and if they were wild and irresponsible it would not be put down to brilliance, but to a general flakiness.” In the extended profile, Polley mentions upcoming acting projects a couple of scripts. “Would she like to combine her interest in politics with her film-making? “I’d love to,” she says, but “I think it’s so rarely done well. It’s really hard to make a useful political film, and, at the same time, make a great film artistically – I feel like the Battle of Algiers did it, and a few Ken Loach movies … That would be my ideal, though, and one of the main reasons that I want to be a film-maker is to combine those things. But I think it’s one of the trickiest things to find a delicate and graceful way to do.”

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“Ten years ago at Telluride, I said on a panel that theatrical distribution was dying. It seemed obvious to me. I was surprised how many in the audience violently objected: ‘People will always want to go to the movies!’ That’s true, but it’s also true that theatrical cinema as we once knew it has died. Theatrical cinema is now Event Cinema, just as theatrical plays and musical performances are Events. No one just goes to a movie. It’s a planned occasion. Four types of Event Cinema remain.
1. Spectacle (IMAX-style blockbusters)
2. Family (cartoon like features)
3. Horror (teen-driven), and
4. Film Club (formerly arthouse but now anything serious).

There are isolated pockets like black cinema, romcom, girl’s-night-out, seniors, teen gross-outs, but it’s primarily those four. Everything else is TV. Now I have to go back to episode five of ‘Looming Tower.'”
~ Paul Schrader

“Because of my relative candor on Twitter regarding why I quit my day job, my DMs have overflowed with similar stories from colleagues around the globe. These peeks behind the curtains of film festivals, venues, distributors and funding bodies weren’t pretty. Certain dismal patterns recurred (and resonated): Boards who don’t engage with or even understand their organization’s artistic mission and are insensitive to the diverse neighborhood in which their organization’s venue is located; incompetent founders and/or presidents who create only obstacles, never solutions; unduly empowered, Trumpian bean counters who chip away at the taste and experiences that make organizations’ cultural offerings special; expensive PR teams that don’t bring to the table a bare-minimum familiarity with the rich subcultural art form they’re half-heartedly peddling as “product”; nonprofit arts organizations for whom art now ranks as a distant-second goal behind profit.”
~ Eric Allen Hatch