MCN Columnists
Kim Voynar

Voynar By Kim VoynarVoynar@moviecitynews.com

O Christmas Tree

Published under 1,000 Monkeys. I love everything about the Christmas season, from the decorations to the Christmas music piped in to all the stores to the lights brightening up all the houses. I love planning what to get each of the kids, baking Christmas cookies, and listening non-stop to Christmas music on the radio until…

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Of Indie Film and Insularity

This Thanksgiving weekend, as I ponder my abundant blessings, one of the things I’m most thankful for is having a job that allows me not only to watch a lot of movies, but to see many of them at film festivals far and wide. As I write this, over the past couple years we’ve seen…

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Home is Where My Heart Is

Published under 1,000 Monkeys. Why 1,000 Monkeys? David and I spent a lot of time talking back and forth about a new name for this more philosophical, life-stuff column. One day in frustration, I said to David, “If you put 1,000 monkeys at 1,000 typewriters, they could never write the craziness that is my life…

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Memory Lane

Published under 1,000 Monkeys. Why 1,000 Monkeys? David and I spent a lot of time talking back and forth about a new name for this more philosophical, life-stuff column. One day in frustration, I said to David, “If you put 1,000 monkeys at 1,000 typewriters, they could never write the craziness that is my life…

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Precious Things

Back at Sundance last year, when Precious: Based on the Novel Push by Sapphire was first unveiled for critics with little fanfare but high hopes, quite a few folks thought it would never see the light of day off the fest circuit. Too dark, too depressing, too tragic … with little redemption or justice to buoy…

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The Vampire as Moral Compass

These days, it seems vampires are the new black — but they aren’t quite as black as they used to be. Today’s vampires have more than just gloomy good looks and great fashion sense; they come complete with a moral compass. If art and literature reflect the world in which they are created, what does…

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Quote Unquotesee all »

“I always thought that once I had lived in Chicago for a while, it would be interesting to do a portrait of the city – but to do it at a significant time. Figuring out when would be the ideal time to do that was the trick. So when this election came around, coupled with the Laquan McDonald trial, it seemed like the ideal time to do the story. Having lived in Chicagoland for thirty-five-plus years and done a number of films here, I’ve always been struck by the vibrancy of the city and its toughness. Its tenderness too. I’ve always been interested in the people at the center of all the stories. This is a different film in that regard, because we’re not following a couple of individuals over the course of the project in the way that a lot of the films I’ve done have, but I still feel like people’s voices and aspirations and hopes are at the center of this series.

It wasn’t easy. We started back in July 2018, it was actually on the Fourth of July – that was our first shoot. It’s like most documentaries in that the further you go along the more involved and obsessed you get, and you just start shooting more and more and more. We threw ourselves into this crazy year in Chicago. We got up every day and tried to figure out if we should be out shooting or not, and what it is we should shoot. We were trying to balance following this massive political story of the mayor’s race and these significant moments like the Laquan McDonald trial with taking the pulse of people in the city that we encounter along the way and getting a sense of their lives and what it means to live here. By election day, Zak Piper, our producer, had something like six cameras out in the field. You could double-check that, it might have been seven. We had this organized team effort to hit all the candidates as they were voting, if they hadn’t already voted. We hit tons of polling places, were at the Board of Elections and then were at the parties for the candidates that we had been able to follow closely. Then of course, we were trying to make sure we were at the parties of the candidates who made it to the runoff. So, yeah, it was kind of a monster.”
~ Steve James On City So Real

“I really want to see The Irishman. I’ve heard it’s big brother Martin Scorsese’s masterpiece. But I really can’t find the time. The promotion schedule is so tight, there’s no opportunity to see a three and a half-hour movie. But I really want to see it. In 2017, right before Okja’s New York premiere, I had the chance to go to Scorsese’s office, which is in the DGA building. There’s a lovely screening room there, too, with film prints that he’s collected. I talked to him for about an hour. There’s no movie he hasn’t seen, even Korean films. We talked about what he’s seen and his past work. It was a glorious day. I’ve loved his work since I was in college. Who doesn’t? Anyone involved with movies must feel the same way.”
~ Bong Joon-ho