There’s a lot to like in David Cronenberg’s latest movie A Dangerous Method. But I miss the monstrous metaphors that he usually employs in his work. He’s one of our most original and disturbing filmmakers after all and excels when venturing into territory where no one else dares to tread. You can read my full review in this week’s issue of Flagpole.
Just a quick update… I will be posting some substantial stuff very soon though.
I’m now reviewing movies for the fine Athens, Georgia publication Flagpole, a free newsweekly that’s just about damn everywhere in town. I’m very happy to be a contributor to the paper and I hope to be writing for them for a long time. For you out-of-towners, you can read the paper and my reviews online too. My first review was for the documentary Senna, chronicling the life of famed Brazilian Formula One driver Ayrton Senna, who died in a crash in 1994. I have no interest in automobiles and thought the movie was fantastic, so that should tell you something. And this week I reviewed actress Vera Farmiga’s directorial debut Higher Ground. Next week I’ll be looking at either Drive, The Future (Miranda July’s return to the screen), and/or Beats, Rhymes and Life, a documentary about the influential hip hop group A Tribe Called Quest. I haven’t decided which one yet.
I’d love to see some of you over at the Flagpole web site leaving comments… wink, wink, nudge, nudge.
My film blogging comrade over at Moon in the Gutter, Jeremy Richey, is hosting a P.T. Anderson blogathon September 13-19 and it will no doubt be an entertaining, exciting event. I’m contributing an essay–not sure which film I’ll be focusing on yet–and I can’t wait to see what everyone comes up with. I wrote a short piece about Anderson’s Punch-Drunk Love in my first book, a film that is (I feel) one of the best of the last decade and a rather damn fine romantic comedy at that, so there’s always the temptation to revisit it… maybe do some screengrabs or something. But I’ve been dying to write about There Will Be Blood since I saw it in January 2008 the day before I left for Europe and then watched again in the Leitrim Cinemobile when I was living in Ireland. Seriously, some enterprising cinephiles in the States need to bring cinema to the masses with trucks like these. They’re great. And they’re warm too, which was surprising since it’s always so damn cold in Ireland year round! Also, the cool thing about the Leitrim Cinemobile was that it would screen international films and smaller indie fare from the States… not blockbusters. This was out in the boondocks, mind you. We didn’t live in the city. And these were real 35mm prints, not DVDs or digital projections. Real films, real patrons in seats, and loads of arguments afterward as you scurried down the pub for a few pints. Make sure to check out the video below that gives you a glimpse of how cool the Leitrim Cinemobile is. But I digress.
P.T. Anderson. Blogathon. Moon in the Gutter. That has Awesome all over it.
It’s been pretty busy around these parts and as the summer crawls forward… it’s only going to get busier as the Terry Gilliam book gets finished and a new book project gets started. I’m not going to say anything publicly about the latter thingy… but it’s exciting and in time I can be more open about it.
I also want to mention a project that I’m very happy about. I’m now a contributing editor and resident film critic at the online arts journal Sinescope. The site just went up Sunday evening and… well, it’s just getting started. Plenty of wonderful essays already up over there–including my own piece on Quentin Tarantino’s war epic Inglourious Basterds–and I also have a film-oriented blog (He Watched by Night) there too which will include DVD/Blu-ray, theatrical, and movie biz items. And if you head over there you can read my reviews of the recent superb Criterion Collection releases Roberto Rossellini’s War Trilogy and Steve McQueen’s remarkable feature-film debut Hunger.
Whew! Sorry for the self-promotion, but I really wanted to mention those nifty things. We now return to regular programming…
Now available in the new issue of Little White Lies magazine is my essay on director Spike Jonze and the “fabled filmmaking class of ’99” entitled “Taking Over the Asylum.” The issue is chock full of Jonze tidbits including an interview with the man. So check it out if you’re inclined. But act fast if you’re interested in snagging a hard copy version of the magazine since they typically sell out. An online version of the magazine will be up in a month or so, though. But I can’t stress enough how wonderful Little White Lies looks in the hard copy format. Great stuff.