The Weekend Report Archive for April, 2009

Play Stalk Man Woman

Audiences opted for the perverse office politics of Obsessed with the film bowing to an estimated $28.8 million. The frame’s other national debuts included the hard kicking actioner Fighting with $11.3 million in third position and, close behind, the potent drama The Soloist with $9.7 million. Also new was the eco-documentary Earth that bowed on…

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17 Again … and Again … and Again

The body switch comedy 17 Again trumped the competition with an estimated $24.2 million to lead weekend movie-going options. Another freshman, the political-thriller State of Play, ranked second with a $14 million debut and the high energy sequel Crank: High Voltage slotted sixth on a gross of $6.7 million. Year-to-year box office was once again…

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Hannalujah!

The great Easter egg hunt delivered record breaking numbers with Hannah Montana: The Movieleading the charge with an estimated $34.3 million. The holiday session also included two other national debuts. Anti-Paul Blart: Mall Cop Observe and Report ranked fourth overall with a middling $11.1 million while the live-action manga adaptation Dragonball: Evolution eked out $4.6…

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Pop Goes the Diesel

Fast & Furious lived up to its moniker, speeding past the competition and re-writing the record books with an estimated $72.4 million debut. In another expansive frame the only other national debut — the droll retro-comedy Adventureland — didn’t provide much in counter-programming with a $5.7 million tally. The session was also rife with limited…

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“When books become a thing, they can no longer be fine.

“Literary people get mad at Knausgård the same way they get mad at Jonathan Franzen, a writer who, if I’m being honest, might be fine. I’m rarely honest about Jonathan Franzen. He’s an extremely annoying manI have only read bits and pieces of his novels, and while I’ve stopped reading many novels even though they were pretty good or great, I have always stopped reading Jonathan Franzen’s novels because I thought they were aggressively boring and dumb and smug. But why do I think this? I didn’t read him when he was a new interesting writer who wrote a couple of weird books and then hit it big with ‘The Corrections,’ a moment in which I might have picked him up with curiosity and read with an open mind; I only noticed him once, after David Foster Wallace had died, he became the heir apparent for the Great American Novelist position, once he had had that thing with Oprah and started giving interviews in which he said all manner of dumb shit; I only noticed him well after I had been told he was An Important Writer.

“So I can’t and shouldn’t pretend that I am unmoved by the lazily-satisfied gentle arrogance he projects or when he is given license to project it by the has-the-whole-world-gone-crazy development of him being constantly crowned and re-crowned as Is He The Great American Writer. What I really object to is this, and if there’s anything to his writing beyond it, I can’t see it and can’t be bothered. Others read him and tell me he’s actually a good writer—people whose critical instincts I have learned to respect—so I feel sure that he’s probably a perfectly fine, that his books are fine, and that probably even his stupid goddamned bird essays are probably also fine.

“But it’s too late. He has become a thing; he can’t be fine.”
~ Aaron Bady

“You know how in postproduction you are supposed to color-correct the picture so everything is smooth and even? Jean-Luc wants the opposite. He wants the rupture. Color and then black and white, or different intensities of color. Or how in this film, sometimes you see the ratio of the frame change after the image begins. That happens when he records from his TV onto his old DVCAM analog machine, which is so old we can’t even find parts when it needs to be repaired. The TV takes time to recognize and adjust to the format on the DVD or the Blu-ray. Whether it’s 1:33 or 1:85. And one of the TVs he uses is slower than the other. He wants to keep all that. I could correct it, but he doesn’t want me to. See, here’s an image from War and Peace. He did the overlays of color—red, white, and blue—using an old analog video effects machine. That’s why you have the blur. When I tried to redo it in digital, I couldn’t. The edges were too sharp. And why the image jitters—I don’t know how he did that. Playing with the cable maybe. Handmade. He wants to see that. It’s a gift from his old machine.”
~ Fabrice Aragno