MCN Commentary & Analysis

Why Write?

July 14, 2020

I started writing this two weeks ago. I was interrupted and never finished… for all the reasons I started writing it. I am not afraid to shoot off my mouth. I have strong opinions. And even if you disagree with my analysis, I have educated, researched opinions. But all the thoughts cascading through my mind […]

Review: Irresistible

June 24, 2020

I love Jon Stewart. He is earnest and smart and funny and on the same side of politics as me. But he’s not a very good director. Not everyone has that skill set. And it shows in the most basic ways. How he frames a single, a two-shot, a joke. How he likes his films […]

Whys & Hows

June 15, 2020

What’s playing at the Roxy? Nothing’s playing at the gawd-damned Roxy. A video stream sharing revenue with an indie exhib that can’t pay the rent  That he rationalizes because they can see the film all the way in Biloxi. That’s what’s f-ing playing at the Roxy. What’s in the frickin’ trades? I’ll tell you what’s […]

Review: The King of Staten Island

June 8, 2020

This movie should have been called, “The Non-Graduate.” That’s what it is… a 2020 take on another era’s Ben Braddock. There is no Mrs. Robinson, because the faux stability of the suburban household is long gone. The closest we get to that character is the ex of our hero’s mother’s romantic interest… who our hero […]

Reviews: Trilogy of Shame (AKA Jane Roe, On The Record, Filthy Rich)

May 29, 2020

The horror of 100,000 American dead (and counting) from the Novel Coronavirus and the grotesquerie of watching a man murdered before our eyes by a white policeman applying the pressure of body weight and a knee to the neck of an already under control black man will certainly bring us a wave of documentaries to […]

“If Your Fall Festival Wants To Live, Come With Me.”

May 25, 2020

It’s almost June 1. And frankly, the festivals (Venice/Telluride/Toronto… and New York) are running out of time. What are they going to be in only three months? We all have the same desire. For the festivals to go on, safely, with people sitting in theaters, watching movies. But circumstances are circumstances. The situation is not […]

Quibi Review: Dummy

May 14, 2020

I never thought it would happen to me. I wandered through Quibi’s programming selections the week it launched. A few minutes here, a few minutes there. A laugh or two. Pun titles all over, like Gayme Show and Dishmantled and Barkitecture. But nothing I felt compelled to stick with. After jumping on the app a […]

42 Weeks To Oscar?

May 12, 2020

The single most significant public event in the possible Oscar season to come happened today. Disney and Lin-Manuel Miranda moved Hamilton into 2020. No, I am not saying that Hamilton is a lock to win Best Picture. It is possible that it won’t be nominated. It is possible that it will be nominated and lose. […]

Paul Schrader’s Call For Big Fests Online Exposes What Fests Mean… & Don’t Mean

May 11, 2020

Paul Schrader is a brilliant man. But… myopic. Festivals have a narrow value beyond the experience to be had at the festivals. And every one of the major festivals has a different purpose that extends beyond those events. Cannes is many festivals. There are two major competitions, a few other platforms, and then a major […]

Misunderstanding The Future of Streaming & Theatrical Exhibition

May 5, 2020

“Theatrical is over.” Yeah, yeah, yeah. I have been listening to this bullshit for decades. And if you read David Puttnam‘s “Movies & Money” (from 1997!), you will see that this line of gloom & doom and hipster pronouncements about The Future started coming up a century ago. This morning, Indiewire published a piece by […]

The Blue Mask Diaries: Episode Three – Netflix Does Love

May 1, 2020

Some of the greatness during this period has been coincidental to the previously scheduled releases of shows. And so has the absolute crap. It became a project during all this mess, driven by the insane amount of media coverage, to watch the worst of Netflix… which is also, apparently, the most popular of Netflix. No, […]

The Blue Mask Diaries: Episode Two – Some Good TV

May 1, 2020

Television is so much a part of this experience of being locked down… so I’ll skip to those adventures before getting back to movies. Let’s start by paying tribute to FX. Devs. Better Things. And Mrs. America. This is some of the finest television of the decade. For me, it’s Devs over Mr Robot. For […]

How Movie Windows Work

April 29, 2020

In light of the theoretical showdown between Universal Studios and the exhibition business and the many opinions thrown around, a simple guide to how the current exhibition/distribution relationship works, in the broadest terms, is called for. Movie theaters are brick & mortar outlets for a small percentage of the content produced by major studios. Via […]

Returning To The Church of Cinema: Part 1 – The Festivals

April 23, 2020

It’s April 23, 2020. New York seems to be over the COVID-19 hump. The, uh, president is encouraging “reopening” America while simultaneously hedging so that he won’t be blamed for encouraging this when people start dying in states that reopen too recklessly. The threat of a rekindling of the pandemic in America looms heavily over […]

The Blue Mask Diaries: Episode One

April 21, 2020

I’ve been in lockdown pretty much since March 9, when I returned from the great and glorious True/False Doc Fest. Thirty-seven days. It’s not really that much, but it feels like forever at times. But when I am on the couch/chair/bed watching something great, time stops and the world is my oyster. There has been […]

Fact-Based VOD Updates

April 9, 2020

As we head toward the premiere of Trolls World Tour tomorrow, a wholly different experiment than the rest of the adjustments that have been made to the VOD window in the last month, let’s get some idea of where we are. The number of titles that have been released in the change-of-plan direct-to-paid-streaming or window-shrinking […]

“Are We There Yet?”

March 26, 2020

Today, we are two-and-half months from the first death from COVID-19 in Wuhan. And things are beginning to start up again in Wuhan and across China. The first death in America from this virus was on February 29, in Washington state. California: March 4. New York: March 14. The arc will vary, but two-and-half months […]

A Little ******* Perspective, Please

March 19, 2020

You know how you were 12 and the entire world was going to notice that zit on your nose and never see you as anything but a troll forever and ever? That is the spirit that the authors of most of the coverage of Hollywood’s COVID-19 problem are embracing. I mean… yes, the entire world […]

MCN Commentary & Analysis See All

The Year Of Festivaling Dangerously

David Poland | August 3, 2020

Movie Content Scoreboard, as of July 2020

David Poland | July 23, 2020

Why Write?

David Poland | July 14, 2020

The News Curated by Ray Pride See All

Vulture

"There is, of course, an eerie prescience to She Dies Tomorrow, not just in its depiction of a pandemic (however absurd this particular one may be) but also in its bleak, spellbinding solitude; an existential plague, it turns out, is almost as effective as our current, real-life one in alienating us from each other."

Vulture | August 9, 2020

Hollywood Reporter

James Cromwell on 25 Years of Babe

Hollywood Reporter | August 9, 2020

The Ross Brothers: "There’s not one film of Altman’s that we don’t like, but Nashville is the holy grail. When we first saw it, we were so blown away that a film could feel so natural and lived in, and that influenced the way we thought about movies and made them from then on. On the surface it feels like just a bunch of interconnected moments, but a deeper reading shows that it’s about the fatality of America. Then there’s the editing, the use of sound, and the curious camera, which seems to be wandering, making us privy to every conversation it’s focused on. If we were ranking Altman films, this would be one through ten."

August 9, 2020

The Guardian

Max Richter: "Throughout my 20s and 30s I worked constantly. Weekends were nonexistent; I worked on multiple paid jobs to support my own creative projects. Now I have the luxury of taking this time off, I’m religious about protecting my weekends. Our lives are data-saturated.It’s psychologically demanding to live on screens 24/7. Sundays are for switching off. I treasure the time for recuperation."

The Guardian | August 9, 2020

The Video Section See All

May Calamawy, Ramy

David Poland | June 15, 2020

The Podcast Section See All