i kind of liked it, in spite of it being an utter shitstorm in parts. i’m not much of a danny boyle fan but it was the only film besides trainspotting that i actually liked (but trainspotting is the better film). i think the reason i like it is precisely because it’s so batshit—and james mcavoy is so good as this guy who you think is one thing and turns out to be a total psychopath. rosario dawson is also really, really strong in an interesting sort of faux-femme fatale role that i think is interesting. i admire the balls of the picture, basically. it goes crazy but at least the ride is fun along the way.
it’s a pity it didn’t get a better opening in the u.s. i think it’s because it’s not oscar-baity like 127 HOURS or SLUMDOG MILLIONAIRE and it’s kind of a genre crazy. but people should check it out when it hits dvd because at least it’s a lot of fun.
Avatar is terrible. I would suggest no one see it, 3D or no
Anonymous asked: I dunno man, the constructedness of a filmic image is a pretty neat thing to think about
No doubt that’s an interesting theoretical discussion, but in reality Martin Scorsese’s film preservation efforts have resulted in dozens, if not hundreds, of actual celluloid treasures being saved; whereas, James Cameron spends billions of dollars to make a movie about colonization that’s basically a 21st c update of the white man’s burden.
So, in the grand smackdown between old media Scorsese and new media Cameron, my money and my soul is forever Team Marty.
When Cameron or whomever finds a way to actually use CGI to tell new and engrossing stories, rather than rehashing old ones, then I might give a fuck about the constructedness of the image in digital filmmaking.
Anonymous asked: ay yo what's the first book(s) i should read by bordwell
film art: an introduction, yo. i still have that textbook and it hasn’t let me down yet. i’d also suggest film history: an introduction and on the history of film style. bordwell’s blog is also a wealth of information that is (usually) lighter reading than his textbooks. there are pdfs of his essays for free, which is a plus.
Anonymous asked: have you ever been interested in film production? i'm a film student at a liberal arts school where technical education takes a huge supremacy over theory. so i tried a few student sets and god damn, i just hated them. i hated how artless and unrewarding they were, i hated the culture surrounding them, i hated the pretentious crowd. clearly, the experience has made me a bitter asshole. i'm wondering if this is a normal thing, or it's just my school, or if i'm just crazy. :/ i feel disillusioned.
If you go to film school and come out disillusioned, congratulations, you’ve earned your degree. Disillusionment is what higher education is all about.
I talked a little bit about the division between theory and production in another ask here, so I already feel like a dick for fanning the rage between the two segments. I will say, however, that even if it’s painful, theory students should get a taste of production and vice versa. It’s one of those grass is always greener type things. Naturally, it makes sense that you won’t love it, though, because you chose theory for a reason. And the people who choose production do it for a reason—they can’t stand theory. (And, really, sometimes theory is ridiculous, let’s just all admit that now.)
And I’m sure all the production kids think you’re pretentious, too. Don’t worry. It’s totally normal. Just try to think about what unites you—a genuine love of film. It just expresses itself differently.
And to answer your question, finally, no, I’ve never been interested in film production. Because I’m bad at it. I prefer to sit quietly watching movies and writing. I’m a social wreck and outcast and if I was on set, I’d probably just hide in a corner somewhere and cry.
Anonymous asked: what's the last movie you saw with your dad
it’s a wonderful life
Anonymous asked: keaton or chaplin?
have you even been paying attention to this blog
laslo-kovacs asked: I'm a film studies major and I found out that a lot of my other film majors don't like silent or black and white or "old" movies in general. I know people are entitled to their own opinions and I feel bad for judging them but I was wondering what you think abou this? I also know you went to UCI and I go to UCD, not a big film school obviously were your classmates like that too?
People who won’t give every kind of movie a chance should not be allowed to attend any self-respecting film school. On a personal level, I find ignorant and close-minded people repulsive and disgusting and I would not give their opinions the time of day. If you can honestly mount an argument about why you don’t like silent films, for example, then I will listen and hopefully we can come to an honest understanding of preference and taste (which of course everyone has). But to just make declarative statements like “I don’t like black and white movies” is absurd and idiotic. And yes, surprise! You meet a lot of asshole idiots in film school. And everywhere, really. You find the most cinematically ignorant people in production, however, bc a lot of kids just want to make Tarantino movies and couldn’t give a shit about film history or technique—which is why their movies are usually terrible.
What a lovely message to receive! Thank you!
Actually, QT acknowledges that the white savior complex is hypocritical, self-indulgent & ultimately deadly. The figure of King Schultz is much darker than most viewers are willing to acknowledge. DJANGO continues after the Candyland massacre precisely because King is NOT the hero/savior—Django is.
Anonymous asked: Do you happen to have an about me? I saw the UCI film blog mention that you were an alumni and was just wondering what you did after UCI. I'm a prospective UCI film student so I'm curious :)
what i did after UCI? you’re looking at it.
slowresounding asked: as someone considering a graduate program in film studies, the information you provide on the side is unbelievably helpful. makes the feeling that i'm hugely under-read a bit less oppressive. thanks.
i’m always glad to hear someone is reading those links & getting something out of them. cheers. good luck in grad school (if you decide it’s right for you).
Anonymous asked: what's your first book gonna be called
movies are my boyfriend: a guide to appearing cinematically literate on the internet but emotionally retarded in everyday life: the kristen sales story
Anonymous asked: you and marya seem to have very different taste in movies. how do you get along?
um, because we’re awesome???
no, but really. here’s the thing, though: i respect people who are passionate and intelligent regardless of their taste. as long as you can state your case & engage me in a real conversation about why you liked something i didn’t, then we can get along fine. i don’t just want a bunch of friends who slavishly reinforce all of my opinions. that’s, like, hitler-style.
and our tastes aren’t that different? are they…? i mean besides THE ENGLISH PATIENT, i think we agree on most things.
Anonymous asked: your essentials for film education are great!