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Ray Pride

By Ray Pride Pride@moviecitynews.com

Picturing David Gordon Green’s JOE

From David Gordon Green’s “gritty” Southern drama Joe, with Nicolas Cage and Tye Sheridan (Mud, Tree of Life), selling at the Berlinale EFM. “Joe is written by Gary Hawkins based on the Larry Brown novel, and produced by Green, his longtime producer Lisa Muskat, and Worldview CEO Christopher Woodrow, alongside Derrick Tseng.

“In the dirty unruly world of smalltown Texas, ex-convict Joe Ransom (Cage) has tried to put his dark past behind him and to live a simple life. He works for a lumber company by day, drinks by night. But when 15-year-old Gary (Sheridan)—a kid trying to support his family—comes to town, desperate for work, Joe has found a way to atone for his sins—to finally be someone’s hero. As Joe tries to protect Gary, the pair will take the twisting road to redemption in the hope for a better life in this tough, hard-hitting but incredibly moving story.”

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“One of my favorite things in watching any performance on film is when there isn’t a lot of cutting going on and when you get a chance to become really absorbed in the artist in hand. The same way we do, hopefully, at a concert, when we get a chance to really trip in to something that’s happening on stage. Whether the singer’s singing, or one of the other musicians is playing, we sort of stay there instead of cutting round with our eyes a lot.”
~ Jonathan Demme

“We’ve talked about this before in the past, my obsession with the Shakespearean histories having the ideal combination of the sweet and the sour. In ‘Henry IV, Part II’ which we’ve discussed before, in the end of that story it’s very complex and haunting because Prince Hal becomes Henry the King, and he has transcended his hoodlum days and at the ceremony is Falstaff, his good friend with whom he has really fucked around and been a loser with, and Falstaff comes up to him and says, ‘Now that you’re king we can really party,’ and the king famously says, ‘I know thee not, old man.’ It becomes Henry IV’s anointment and Falstaff’s catastrophe. That’s life. I have experienced very little unfettered triumph. There are moments, such as when my children are born, but even that comes with new fears and anxieties. In a sense the better you can communicate that life is both at once, the more powerful over time something becomes. One strives for something where the threads are there because it lasts in way that is very palpable. The idea of a tragedy is powerful in literature and theater, but in cinema it doesn’t work, certainly not commercially, and less so critically. Why is that? I think it has to do with how movies are so close to us.”
~ James Gray