Movie City Indie Archive for May, 2012

Beasts of the Southern Apprenticeship: Benh Zeitlin’s First Film, GLORY AT SEA (25’48”)

While the short’s been online for over three years, advancing publicity for the summer release of Beasts of the Southern Wild make Glory At Sea worth a second (or first!) look.  [Via Wholphin.]

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A Single-Take Steadicam Shot Behind Scenes Of HUGO

Steadicam by Larry McConkey, who also shot the club sequence in Goodfellas.

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Paul Schrader posts on his Bret Easton Ellis project, THE CANYONS

THE CANYONS. “The material is classic BEE. Character driven, dialogue driven, explicit in word if not action. Two visual poles are emerging in the low budget world: on one side, Wong Kar-Wai’s Fallen Angels. On the other Xavier Dolan’s Heartbeats. Both styles mix approaches, use hand held, work economically. Both are composed as opposed to faux vérité. You could distinquish them by saying Fallen Angels aspires to the characters’ POV, Heartbeat to the director’s. A third path? Better examples from the microbudget world?”

John DeFazio will be the DP for The Canyons. John and I are now discussing possible approaches. Many things are possible on a microbudget. Some things are not. For example, you have to plug in for power rather than bring a generator. That limits the amount of artifical light you can use. Which means in turn that post-prod color effects may be more practical than onset gels. And so on. “Undoing” is just one style of cinematography we are dicussing. Any thoughts what the “look” of Canyons should be. Hard or soft? Back or front? Hand held or tripod? There are no longer any rules in cinematography, only choices.” (The project has 11 days left in its Kickstarter campaign, but is already 50% over its funding goal.)

 

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Clipping ON THE ROAD: Kirsten Dances; Kristen Drives

 

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Lurhmann’s Eckleburg

[Click twice.]

And his “Zeigfeld.”

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Holy HOLY MOTORS!! 9 images, video, press kit extracts

  The tweets after the first screening: c’est incroyable!

Epigraph to the press kit: “History adds that before or after dying he found himself in the presence of God and told Him: “I who have been so many men in vain want to be one and myself.” The voice of the Lord answered from a whirlwind: “Neither am I anyone; I have dreamt the world as you dreamt your work, my Shakespeare, and among the forms in my dream are you, who like myself are many and no one.”

— Jorge Luis Borges, “Everything and Nothing”

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Teasing THE MASTER

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Trailering Bond 23: Hello Roger Deakins!

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56 Seconds Of THE SOUNDS OF ARONOFSKY

[Kottke.]

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Aaron Sorkin’s Syracuse Commencement Speech (16’27”)

“Thank you very much. Madam Chancellor, members of the Board of Trustees, members of the faculty and administration, parents and friends, honored guests and graduates, thank you for inviting me to speak today at this magnificent Commencement ceremony.

There’s a story about a man and a woman who have been married for forty years. One evening at dinner the woman turns to her husband and says, “You know, forty years ago on our wedding day you told me that you loved me and you haven’t said those words since.” They sit in silence for a long moment before the husband says “If I change my mind, I’ll let you know.”

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Movie City Indie

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“I suddenly couldn’t say anything about some of the movies. They were just so terrible, and I’d already written about so many terrible movies. I love writing about movies when I can discover something in them – when I can get something out of them that I can share with people. The week I quit, I hadn’t planned on it. But I wrote up a couple of movies, and I read what I’d written, and it was just incredibly depressing. I thought, I’ve got nothing to share from this. One of them was of that movie with Woody Allen and Bette Midler, Scenes From a Mall. I couldn’t write another bad review of Bette Midler. I thought she was so brilliant, and when I saw her in that terrible production of ‘Gypsy’ on television, my heart sank. And I’d already panned her in Beaches. How can you go on panning people in picture after picture when you know they were great just a few years before? You have so much emotional investment in praising people that when you have to pan the same people a few years later, it tears your spirits apart.”
~ Pauline Kael On Quitting

“My father was a Jerome. My daughter’s middle name is Jerome. But my most vexing and vexed relationship with a Jerome was with Jerome Levitch, the subject of my first book under his stage and screen name, Jerry Lewis.

I have a lot of strong and complex feelings about the man, who passed away today in Las Vegas at age 91. Suffice to say he was a brilliant talent, an immense humanitarian, a difficult boss/interview, and a quixotic sort of genius, as often inspired as insipid, as often tender as caustic.

I wrote all about it in my 1996 book, “King of Comedy,” which is available on Kindle. With all due humility, it’s kinda definitive — the good and the bad — even though it’s two decades old. My favorite review, and one I begged St. Martin’s (unsuccessfully) to put on the paperback jacket, came from “Screw” magazine, which called it “A remarkably fair portrait of a great American asshole.”

Jerry and I met twice while I was working on the book and spoke/wrote to each other perhaps a dozen times. Like many of his relationships with the press and his partners/subordinates, it ended badly, with Jerry hollering profanities at me in the cabin of his yacht in San Diego. I wrote about it in the epilogue to my book, and over the years I’ve had the scene quoted back to me by Steve Martin, Harry Shearer, Paul Provenza and Penn Jillette. Tom Hanks once told me that he had a dinner with Paul Reiser and Martin Short at which Short spent the night imitating Jerry throwing me off the boat.

Jerry was a lot of things: father, husband, chum, businessman, philanthropist, artist, innovator, clown, tyrant. He was at various times in his life the highest-ever-paid performer on TV, in movies, and on Broadway. He raised BILLIONS for charity, invented filmmaking techniques, made perhaps a dozen classic comedies, turned in a terrific dramatic performance in Martin Scorsese’s “The King of Comedy,” and left the world altered and even enhanced with his time and his work in it.

That’s an estimable achievement and one worth pausing to commemorate.

#RIP to Le Roi du Crazy

~ Biographer Shawn Levy on Jerry Lewis on Facebook