Movie City Indie Archive for August, 2013

Pegg & Frost Get Lucky (1’17”)

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Teasing AIN’T THEM BODIES SAINTS (0’51”)

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10 Questions For Elmore Leonard (2010) (6’34”)

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Interview: A Few Choice Details From Lee Daniels on THE BUTLER

LEE DANIELS' THE BUTLER

Lee Daniels is almost as entertaining an interview subject as he is as a filmmaker. We first talked about Precious, and a few weeks ago about The Butler. We spoke at the Waldorf-Astoria Chicago on July 30, 2013. Earlier in the day, Forest Whitaker told me that Daniels’ attention had extended to a special detail on one of the film’s three posters: the butler’s upraised, Black Power-like salute still wears a white glove. We talk about details like that, Presidential cameos, father-son issues, his love for John Waters, the importance of dirty jokes in the movie, the racial slur that the butler hears throughout the film, the first alternate title that came to Daniels’ mind and more. (Plot details are discussed.)

The previous interviewer had told Daniels about having admired his bold, eccentric work all the way back to 2006’s Shadowboxer.

DANIELS: You put your heart, your soul, your guts, your everything into your films and sometimes it’s embraced, and sometimes it’s not embraced, and so… I remember that my directorial debut was not embraced. And for him to say that… Helen told me, Mirren told me, she said, Lee, people will appreciate this in many years, I promise. And I said, ooooo-kay, well… I’ll living in the now! (A big laugh.) I’m living now! Anyway.

PRIDE: The film very quickly announced itself as a Lee Daniels film. There’s no public profile of the film right now, what the film is [at the end of July]. Nobody’s talked about it, because almost no one has seen it. Some people are predicting it’s going to be docile. It’s going to be very uplifting. [Daniels cackles, then breaks out in huge laughter.] What is it, five or six shots in before you see the shot of the two lynched men hanging from a branch, the American flag behind them, no breeze, draped down dead weight, just like them? I was, okay, we’re in for the ride.

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AIN’T THEM BODIES SAINTS Making-of By The Ross Brothers (13’29”)

These guys continue to be so, so good. [Via Film.com.]

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LOCKS (2009), from Ryan Coogler (6’11”)

A sweetly unexpected mix.

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Jer Answers THE DAY THE CLOWN CRIED Question (1’34”)

I get a little teary hearing him say “Bad… Bad… Bad.” But! The punchline.

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WALTER MITTY In A Box

2013-08-12 15.47.38Five images from Ben Stiller’s The Secret Life Of Walter Mitty, in a 2MB thumb drive. ˙

mitty longboard
The always-poignant image of a 50-year-old man with a skateboard.

 

The_Secret_Life_of_Walter_Mitty_5

The always-poignant image of a 50-year-old man with prepared food on a plastic plate under plastic wrap.

“My wish is that we made a movie that people have a hard time categorizing,” Ben Stiller writers in “Some Thoughts.” “I hope it is funny and serious, epic and intimate, realistic while also being sort of a fantasy, too. Mainly I hope it connexts with the idea that we all have something inside of us waiting to get out, and all it takes it the courage to stop dreaming and start living.” Pleasant omens: the adaptation is by Steve Conrad (The Pursuit of Happyness, The Promotion); photographed by Stuart Dryburgh (The Piano, Lone Star, “Boardwalk Empire”).

 

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Werner Herzog’s FROM ONE SECOND TO THE NEXT Doc for Sprint, Verizon, AT&T (34’56”)

Heart-tugging, tear-jerking genuinely Herzog film: that last line is quietly spoken and ever so loudly Herzog. “I knew I could do it because it has to do with catastrophic events invading a family, In one second, entire lives are either wiped out or changed forever. That kind of emotional resonance is something that I knew I could cover. What AT&T proposed immediately clicked and connected inside of me. There’s a completely new culture out there. I’m not a participant of texting and driving—or texting at all—but I see there’s something going on in civilization which is coming with great vehemence at us.” (Via Sprint.)

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Ben Wheatley makes his first video: “Formaldehyde” for The Editors (4’13”)

“A lot of directors come up through making pop promos: I didn’t,” Wheatley says. “My route in was through advertising, internet and television. The pop promo is something I’ve always been interested in. Music plays a big part in my film work and I’ve always admired the work of Michel Gondry, Chris Cunningham, David Wilson and Dougal Wilson to name but a few. I was very flattered to be asked.” [From. Via @keyframedaily.]

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Movie City Indie

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Dear Irene Cho, I will miss your energy and passion; your optimism and joy; your kindness towards friends, colleagues, strangers, struggling filmmakers, or anyone who randomly crossed your path and needed a hand. My brothers and I have long considered you another sibling in our family. Our holiday photos – both western and eastern – have you among all the cousins, in-laws, and kids… in the snow, sun, opening presents, at large dinner gatherings, playing Monopoly, breaking out pomegranate seeds and teaching us all how to dance Gangnam style. Your friendship and loyalty meant a great deal to me: you were the loudest cheerleader when I experienced victories and you were always ready with sushi when I had disappointments. You had endless crazy ideas which always seemed impossible but you would will them into existence. (Like that time you called me and suggested that we host a brunch for newly elected mayor of LA, Eric Garcetti because “he is going to president one day.” We didn’t have enough time or funding, of course, only your desire to do it. So you did, and I followed.) You created The Daily Buzz from nothing and it survived on your steam in spite of many setbacks because you believed in a platform for emerging filmmakers from all nations. Most of all, you were a wonderful mother to your son, Ethan, a devoted wife to your husband, and a wonderful sibling and daughter to your family. We will all miss how your wonderful smile and energy lit up the room and our lives. Rest in peace, Irene.
~ Rose Kuo Remembers Irene Cho on Facebook

“You know, I was never a critic. I never considered myself as a film critic. I started doing short films, writing screenplays and then for awhile, for a few years I wrote some film theory, including some film criticism because I had to, but I was never… I never had the desire to be a film critic. I never envisioned myself as a film critic, but I did that at a period of my life when I thought I kind of needed to understand things about cinema, understand things about film theory, understand the world map of cinema, and writing about movies gave me that, and also the opportunity to meet filmmakers I admired.

“To me, it was the best possible film school. The way it changed my perspective I suppose is that I believe in this connection between theory and practice. I think that you also make movies with ideas and you need to have ideas about filmmaking to achieve whatever you’re trying to achieve through your movies, but then I started making features in 1986 — a while ago — and I left all that behind.

“For the last three decades I’ve been making movies, I’ve been living, I’ve been observing the world. You become a different person, so basically my perspective on the world in general is very different and I hope that with every movie I make a step forward. I kind of hope I’m a better person, and hopefully a better filmmaker and hopefully try to… It’s very hard for me to go back to a different time when I would have different values in my relationship to filmmaking. I had a stiffer notion of cinema.”
~ Olivier Assayas