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David Poland

By David Poland poland@moviecitynews.com

BYOB 022014

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6 Responses to “BYOB 022014”

  1. EtGuild2 says:

    So I saw “Blood Brother” last night, the documentary about the regular American dude who takes care of kids with AIDS in India. There was an absolutely fascinating meta-documentary that was taking place at the same time as what I was watching on screen involving the main dude’s desire to be liked, and the American desire for charitable works overseas to come with some sort of recognition. There’s a scene where this guy speaks of the horrific, wrenching stories of all these kids, but the focus is on how it affects HIM,. We do not see ONE story of how it affects the children he is speaking of, though images of the children recounting horrors shuffle past wordlessly. To be clear, I have no doubt this guy cares for the children he has dedicated his life to serve. At the same time, I have no doubt he feels that he is committed to a heroic, noble cause, and his jesture is by all means worthy of a documentary.

    Just an unbelievable examination of American narcissism in the philanthropic realm that I felt like either flew over most critics’ heads or they chose to ignore. But it made it the second greatest doc last year for me (Act of Killing) in a year of just superb work (Call Me Kuchu, Gideon’s Army, Herman’s House, A Band Called Death, 20 Feet From Stardom, on and on).

    Anyone else who saw this please comment.

  2. PcChongor says:

    Charity in America is just the 21st century version of paying an indulgence. Gives a nice warm and gooey feeling about helping out with a symptom, while leaving the root cause completely untouched. But at least it’s tax deductible!

  3. Tuck Pendleton says:

    Saw The Spectacular Now the other night. Wonderful, I was blown away.

  4. chris says:

    Sadly, Etguild, I don’t think that phenomenon is so uncommon. Same deal with “Born Into Brothels” and that movie won an Oscar.

  5. EtGuild2 says:

    Finally got around to “The Square.” Transcendent, amazing, must-see and is on Netflix instant. I know it happens again and again in the Oscars with feel-good domestic fluff overpowering world-beating cultural iconography, but “The Act of Killing” and “The Square” are two of the best documentaries ever made. I liked “20 Feet From Stardom,” but “The Act of Killing” is transforming Thailand’s response to the genocide with actual legislation taking place as a result of this film, and “The Square,” is a desperately needed reaffirmation of hope that should be required viewing for neo-cons like John McCain and Lindsey Graham pining for Mubarak.

    A “20 Feet From Stardom” win, god bless Darlene Love and company, would be the biggest travesty this year.

  6. Hcat says:

    So I just want to get this straight about the son of god movie this weekend. It is all repurposed footage from the hugely viewed miniseries. So they worked the church circuit to get them to pay for a movie they have seen in a slightly different form on cable and on DVD? Aren’t people going to feel slightly burned when they realize they bought.a ticket to something they have on the shelf at home?

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“The sad and painful truth is that pretty much everyone in this town knew who Harvey was. I have had long talks with my most liberal friends. Did we know he was a rapist? We didn’t. But did we know that for decades he has been offering actresses big careers in exchange for sexual favors? Yes, we did — and make no mistake, that is its own kind of rape. And did we all — or did any of us — refuse to do business with him on moral grounds? No. We ALL STAYED IN BUSINESS WITH HIM. I have never done business with Harvey but I can tell you with certainty that I would have — because I was recently approached by a film festival he sponsors. They asked me to submit my short film for their consideration and I did it without thinking twice. I am a dyed-in-the-wool feminist and a vocal one at that. So why didn’t I think twice? Because this entire town is built on the ugly principals that Harvey takes to an horrific extreme. If I didn’t work with people whose behavior I find reprehensible, I wouldn’t have a career.”
~ Showrunner Krista Vernoff

From AMPAS president John Bailey:

Dear Fellow Academy Members,

Danish director Carl Dreyer’s 1928 film “The Passion of Joan of Arc” is not only one of the visual landmarks of the silent era, but is a deeply disturbing portrait of a young woman’s persecution in the face of the male judges and priests of the ruling order. The actress Maria Falconetti gave one of the most profoundly affecting performances in the history of cinema as the Maid of Orleans.

Since the decision of the Academy’s Board of Governors on Saturday October 14 to expel producer Harvey Weinstein from its membership, I have been haunted not only by the recurring image of Falconetti and the sad arc of her career (dying in Argentina in 1946, reputedly from a crash diet) but of Joan’s refusal to submit to an auto de fe recantation of her beliefs.

Recent public testimonies by some of filmdom’s most recognized women regarding sexual intimidation, predation, and physical force is, clearly, a turning point in the film industry—and hopefully in our country, where what happens in the world of movies becomes a marker of societal Zeitgeist. Their decision to stand up against a powerful, abusive male not only parallels the cinema courage of Falconetti’s Joan but gives all women courage to speak up.

After Saturday’s Board of Governors meeting, the Academy issued a passionately worded statement, expressing not only our concern about harassment in the film industry, but our intention to be a strong voice in changing the culture of sexual exploitation in the movie business, already common well before the founding of the Academy 90 years ago. It is up to all of us Academy members to more clearly define for ourselves the parameters of proper conduct, of sexual equality, and respect for our fellow artists throughout our industry. The Academy cannot, and will not, be an inquisitorial court, but we can be part of a larger initiative to define standards of behavior, and to support the vulnerable women and men who may be at personal and career risk because of violations of ethical standards by their peers.

Yours,
John