MCN Columnists
Douglas Pratt

The Ultimate DVD Geek By Douglas PrattPratt@moviecitynews.com

Vantage Point

A marvelously frantic suspense movie about a presidential assassination attempt, Vantage Point,has been issued by Sony Pictures Home Entertainment. The film has several famous stars in smallish roles, but the hero is a recovering Secret Service agent, played by Dennis Quaid, who may have been called back to duty too soon after defending the president from a…

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Hannah Montana and Miley Cyrus: Best of Both Worlds Concert

I am such a 3-D junkie that the moment I obtained the Walt Disney Studios Home Entertainment 2-Disc Extended Edition release, Hannah Montana and Miley Cyrus Best of Both Worlds Concert, I tore it open with a lustful glee that would not have been equaled had Cyrus herself been sitting next to me on the couch,…

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Dirty Harry

Being one of Warner Home Video’s core assets, Don Siegel’s 1971 Clint Eastwood film, Dirty Harry, has long since undergone stereophonication and upgraded image transfers. Warner released the title initially in the beginning days of DVD and then put together a collector’s edition with improved colors and a few supplementary features. Warner has now, however, upgraded the movie…

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Batman: The Movie

The more time that passes, the more the 1966Batman The Movie begins to seem like a comical masterpiece, or perhaps a masterpiece in a category all of its own. Originally a summertime knock-off of the enormously successful winter replacement first season of the television series starring Adam Westand Burt Ward, the 105-minute feature concocted a serviceable…

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The Ultimate DVD Geek

Quote Unquotesee all »

“A shot is a story. A shot on its own should be a piece of a story. Which is why I talk a lot about watching films, even the films we’re working on, with the sound off. Just to analyze how the film works, because a film should work for an audience without any sound. The biggest problem I see is that someone may have a superficial understanding of what a shot is propositionally, but they don’t have an understanding of how all of these shots are part of a family that needs to connect, and so you’ll get something that’s like a sentence arranged poorly with six nouns in a row. That surprises me, because I think that’s something that can be learned. Some things can’t be, but that can. It’s a grammar. In a classroom I could walk somebody through the difference between a sequence in which the filmmaker has a deep understanding of how images connect, and someone who doesn’t. It’s not really an intellectual process. Some people are just born with it and are just sort of savants at that deep mathematical understanding of shot construction.  I’m better than I used to be, but there are some people I’m just never going to catch. Spielberg. His staging ability. I’m never going to catch him. But when you’re trying to figure out how to get better—I’m not competitive in the sense of looking around at other filmmakers and comparing myself to them. What I do have to think about in trying to navigate myself through a career is: what can I get better at, and what do I have that I can enhance that somebody else doesn’t have?”
~ Steven Soderbergh

“It’s not going to be huge. He and I had been corresponding for a while. When I finally met him, he said, ‘We should collaborate.’ When John Ashbery says that to you, you don’t say when, you just say yes. It has not been easy to conjure this out of nothing. Sean Price Williams and I spent time with him, and it will appear on FilmStruck before the year is out…. I have figured out how to streamline things. I still have dreams of making movies with bigger budgets, and they might be considered to have more of a voice in pop culture. I don’t want to let go of that. I also realize that you grow up a lot of your life with wishful thinking and waiting. I have figured out ways to avoid doing that. I am working on a bigger movie about Nikola Tesla, set in the past, so it is not an easy film to make. I am also working on an adaptation of Don DeLillo’s ‘White Noise.’ That seems more likely to catch fire.”
Michael Almereyda Steps It Up