MCN Originals

Climax Daddy: The Modern Dance With Filmmaker Gaspar Noe

Beauty suffers.

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The DVD Wrapup: Ritual, She Wolf, Over the Top, Dark River, Man’s Best Friend, Mr & Mrs Adelman, Mad Dog & Glory, A.I. Rising, Deadly Mantis, Watch Over Me … More

The chief selling point is spelled out on the jacket: “Inspired by the philosophy of, and featuring an appearance by the father of ‘psychomagic,’ Alejandro Jodorowsky.” The marketing team might just as easily summoned the memory of Luis Bunuel.

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What is a Harmony Korine?

The man, the myth, the Vaudeville.

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Who’s A Hero: A Review of Captain Marvel

Sometimes silly, largely disposable yet lightly likable, the bulk of “Captain Marvel” is set in 1995 but exists for this moment. Its love for its heroine radiates outward, through the busy narrative and out into the streets afterward. Self-realization: what’s there not to admire about the sense of self that Carol Danvers (Brie Larson) beams with at the end of “Captain Marvel” on her way to “Avengers: Endgame”?

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The DVD Wrapup: Instant Family, Burning, Clovehitch Killer, Vanishing, Marquise, Kalifornia, Donna Haraway, Walking Dead … More

If everything that happens outside the group-therapy sessions plays out according to Hollywood standards, the interaction between the prospective parents and the social workers effectively serves as a counterbalance to the Wagners’ misery.

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The DVD Wrapup: Sleep With Anger, Ralph Wrecks Internet, Liz & Blue Bird, Hannah Grace, Unseen, Jupiter’s Moon, Legally Blonde, Willard, Bang … More

The PG-rated To Sleep With Anger features three of Burnett’s favorite themes: family, community and tradition. It is set in a middle-class section of South-Central L.A., before the Watts riots changed the outside world’s perception of the LAPD and the willingness of residents to stand up for their community.

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The Gurus Weigh In, Post-Oscar

Not quite round-ups, but a jolt or three.

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The Gurus o’ Gold Oscar Blowout – Part 1

The Gurus make their final estimations of the field as seen by the Academy… no huge surprises, but Vice tumbled in almost all categories, with a few stray hopes for an editing nod.

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The Gurus o’ Gold Oscar Blowout – Part 2

First (and final) surmises of the shorts categories, and a few familiar crafts staying about the same from recent weeks.

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The DVD Wrap: Robin Hood, Overlord, Alexanderplatz, Rodrigo D., Happy Hour, Moko Jumbie, Last Race, Joseph H. Lewis, Backtrace, Backbeat … More

Not surprisingly, perhaps, the geniuses decided that a Robin Hood that borrowed liberally from the Wachowskis’ V for Vendetta (2005) and Baz Luhrmann and DiCaprio’s Romeo + Juliet (1996) could pump fresh blood into a character whose cinematic career began in… 1908.

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The Gurus: Ranking Acting, Singing, Writing, Best Picture-ing

Reflecting the Grammys and a few last guild votes before Oscar voting closes, consensus arrives in a few categories under the watching eyes of the Gurus, notably in the acting categories, and a sweep in Best Adapted Screenplay for BlacKkKlansman.

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The DVD Wrapup: Shoplifters, Front Runner, Nobody’s Fool, Peppermint Soda, Haunted Hospital, Valentine, Possum, Mermaid, Guilty, Antonio Lopez, 4 Weddings … More

If Roma had been released a year earlier or later, Shoplifters might have hit the cinematic equivalent of a grand-slam homerun. It’s every bit that good.

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The DVD Wrapup: Spider’s Web, Maquia, Cloverfield, No Date, Free Lunch, Possessed, Road House 2, Dolphins, Poetic Justice, Human 3.0 … More  

In the only interview he ever gave about the series, Larsson said he based the character on how Pippi Longstocking might have turned out, as an adult. He also credited his rebellious teenage niece, Therese, for Salander’s goth look.

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Gurus Predict, Post-Guilds: Director, Production Design, Film Editing, Animated Feature; As Well As Doc Feature, Cinematography, Costume Design, SFX and of course, BEST PICTURE

The Gurus respond to Oscar chances after multiple guild nods, catching up with Director, Production Design, Film Editing, Animated Feature; As Well As Doc Feature, Cinematography, Costume Design, SFX and not least, Best Picture.

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The DVD Wrapup: Nutcracker, Always Room For Giallo, Mondo, Hunter Killer, Slice, Night Is Short, Suburbia, Masanjia and more

Disney decided that “The Nutcracker and the Four Realms” had a better ring to it than “The Nutcracker and the Mouse King.” And, perhaps, that’s where the studio’s expectations for the holiday movie first hit a wall.

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Gurus o’ Gold On The Oscar Chart No. 1

Weighing in on a first set of Oscar nominations, including acting nods after the Sunday night SAG awards. Harsh weather and (harsher?) Sundance delayed several Gurus, but the roster will be back to full strength in charts leading up to Oscar night.

Love for BlacKkKlansman pushes Spike Lee’s multi-nominated pic atop Green Book for second ranking for Best Pictures. Best Actor and Best Supporting Actor predications offer up a pretty solid consensus

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Sundance: Untitled Amazing Johnathan Documentary, The Magic Life of V and Walden

What sets “Untitled Amazing Johnathan Documentary” apart is that about midway through the film there’s a plot twist, followed by another plot twist, followed by a period of tense relationship between documentarian and subject that left Berman sad, morose, feeling badly used, and uncertain as to whether he’d ever finish his film. It’s here that “Untitled Amazing Johnathan Documentary,” not unlike “Winnebago Man,” becomes a film as much about the filmmaker unearthing deep and sometimes unpleasant truths about himself and ultimately becoming part of his own film, as it is about the subject the film thought it was going to be when it grew up.

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The DVD Wrapup: Mikey & Nicky, Apparition, Widowed Witch, Dis, Spiral, Wandering Muse, Jack the Ripper, Howling 3, Eating Animals, Scoundrels, Waterworld … More

Cassavetes and Falk may fit the mold of small-time wise guys, but the characters’ likability factor decreases from the moment May ratchets up the dial on Nicky’s booze-fueled paranoia. It plummets even further during their visits to former wives and girlfriends, who act as if they expect to be slapped around, fucked and forsaken.

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The Gurus O’ Gold Weigh The Acting Categories And Best Picture

Hello, Glenn Close!

Oscar nominations drop on Tuesday morning, and the Gurus anticipate some shifts in the Academy’s Final Five for acting nominations, plus a few flyaway titles from the Best Picture roster, which could contain as many as ten nominees.

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The DVD Wrapup: Not A Witch, Jonathan, The Captain, Speed Kills, Room 304, Hippocrates, The Dark, Crimson Peak, Tea With Dames, Forbidden Photos, Addiction … More

I was reminded of Nǃxau while watching I Am Not a Witch, an offbeat dramedy by Rungano Nyoni. It depicts the ways women convicted of being witches in rural Zambia cope with ignorance, prejudice and forced labor.

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MCN Originals

Quote Unquotesee all »

“With any character, the way I think about it is, you have the role on the page, you have the vision of the director and you have your life experience… I thought it was one of the foundations of the role for John Wick. I love his grief. For the character and in life, it’s about the love of the person you’re grieving for, and any time you can keep company with that fire, it is warm. I absolutely relate to that, and I don’t think you ever work through it. Grief and loss, those are things that don’t ever go away. They stay with you.”
~ Keanu Reeves

“I was checking through stuff the other day for technical reasons. I came across The Duellists on Netflix and I was absolutely stunned to see that it was exquisitely graded. So, while I rarely look up my old stuff, I stopped to give it ten minutes. Bugger me, I was there for two hours. I was really fucking pleased with what it was and how the engine still worked within the equation and that engine was the insanity and stupidity of war. War between two men, in that case, who fight on thought they both eventually can’t remember the reason why. It was great, yeah. The great thing about these platforms now is that, one way or another, they’ll seek out and then put out the best possible form and the long form. Frequently, films get cut down because of that curse in which the studio felt or feels that they have to preview. And there’s nothing worse than a preview to diminish the original intent.Oh, yeah, how about every fucking time? And I’ve stewed about films later even more because when you tell the same joke 20 times the joke’s no longer funny. When you tell a bad joke once or twice? It’s fine. But come on, now. Here’s the key on the way I feel when I approach the movie: I try to keep myself as withdrawn from the project as possible once I’ve filmed it. And – this is all key on this – then getting a really excellent editor so I never have to sit in on editing. What happens if you sit in is you become stale and every passage or joke, metaphorically speaking, gets more and more tired. You start cutting it all back because of fatigue. So what you have to do is keep your distance and therefore, in a funny kind of way, you, as the director, should be the preview and that’s it.”
~ Sir Ridley Scott