Movie City Indie Archive for April, 2017

Jonathan Demme in the Modern World: On MANCHURIAN CANDIDATE (2004)

Unlike his actors, Demme saw John Frankenheimer’s film on its first release. “I saw the original when I was a teenager,” he tells me. “I was an avid moviegoer, I saw everything,” he says, hardly taking a breath.

DEMME: Everything, everything. I was really hooked on movies at a very young age. The Manchurian Candidate, along with Seven Days in May, Fail-Safe and Dr. Strangelove [were] this quartet of anarchistic black-and-white American movies, each of which did things that you just didn’t do in American movies, especially in the realm of irreverence toward politics and government institutions and the Army. I was what, 16, it was shocking, it was thrilling and interestingly, it predated my exposure to the French New Wave, so in away, this was the American, a certain kind of new wave in American movies. So Manchurian Candidate was a trailblazer, it was a shocker, it was a great picture and it altered the way I thought about movies! [Demme caps the rush of words with a pleased whooshing sound.]

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Trailering Sofia Coppola’s THE BEGUILED (2’22”)

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Terrence Malick, Man In The Hat… But Not Always

Terrence-Malick

Now that Terrence Malick has shown his face and sounded his voice in public spaces for Song To Song and Voyage of Time, how many clandestine cameos have been hiding in plain sight?

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The Complete Cast Of “Twin Peaks,” Season Three

TP Cast 1 TP Cast 2

Debuted 27 years ago today. Returns a mere six weeks from now…

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Movie City Indie

Quote Unquotesee all »

Who are the critics speaking to?
Nobody seems able to answer the question of how you can make theatre criticism more appealing, more clickworthy. One answer is to be a goddamn flamethrower every week, be a bombthrower, to write scorched-earth reviews. Just be completely hedonistic and ego-driven in your criticism, become a master stylist, and treat everything in front of you onstage as fodder for your most delicious and vicious language. That’s one road. And people may enjoy your writing. The thing that’s sacrificed is any sense of a larger responsibility, and any aesthetic consistency. I don’t think anyone is following that model right now—just being a complete jerk.

Well, Rex Reed is still writing.
Ah. Well, you can also be a standard bearer, and insist that work doesn’t measure up to your high standards. But I think the art makes the standards. I’m not going to sit there and say, “This is the way you do Shakespeare.” I believe that every play establishes its own standards, and our job is to just evaluate it. But everybody’s looking for the formula for how to talk about culture so that people who don’t have any time to read want to read about it. Is there something beyond thumbs-up, thumbs-down criticism? I would hope there’s a way to talk about a theatre event in real time—meaning while it’s still going on—in a way that’s engaging, funny, witty, and evaluates the elements of the thing. But it’s like if you had a friend who was like, “Gee, are you working out? You look great. But that’s a terrible haircut.” Nobody wants that person around.
~ Time Out’s 17-Year Theatre Critic, David Cote, Upon His Exit

“Now I am awake to the world. I was asleep before. When they slaughtered Congress, we didn’t wake up. When they blamed terrorists and suspended the Constitution, we didn’t wake up either. They said it would be temporary. Nothing changes instantaneously. In a gradually heating bathtub you’d be boiled to death before you knew it.”
“The Handmaid’s Tale,” Bruce Miller