Saturday, March 28, 2009

Notable film and media links: March 28, 2009

---Jason Bellamy and Ed Howard continue their always-impressive Conversations series with their discussion of Steven Soderbergh's Solaris.

---For The Evening Class, Michael Guillen profiles the legendary animator Chuck Jones

---I find that at times I just like to watch French New Wave films.  Thanks in part to Allan Fish's excellent post about Bob le Flambeur in Wonders in the Dark, and in part due to Richard Neupert's claim that Flambeur was a big influence on Tarantino's Reservoir Dogs and John Woo's work in the 1990s (not to mention Godard in the 1960s), Jean-Pierre Melville's nonchalant gangster tale has become my current film of choice.  

---I tried Facebook for a month, and grew to hate it.  I was always be in debt to Matt Labash and his cogent essay "Down with Facebook" for persuading me to get off the evil time-wasting online community.  As Labash writes,

"Another longtime friend, the host of Fox's Red Eye, Greg Gutfeld, tells me he has 3,200 Facebook friends: `I know maybe 50 of them.' To Gutfeld's credit, he is ashamed. He concedes that Facebook is a place that turns adults into teenage girls. `Instead of making things,' he says, `We're telling people how great Gossip Girl is. Would your grandfather go on Facebook? Probably not. I think we've become a country thirsting for attention--Facebook is basically Googling yourself for people who don't have enough hits to warrant it.' Being a television personality, Gutfeld will go on for the occasional ego-stroke, but admits, `It's all pointless. A Facebook friend won't shave your back.'"

---And speaking of Facebook, I like the way Twitter keeps finding reasons to appear in the news due to the grim reality of Twitter ghost writers, its emphasis on the personal lives of celebrities, fake twitter celebrities, or whatever. Supernews put together a nice video satire on Twitter posted here on Boingboing.

---Invisible Woman interviews director Dennis Dortch as part of her 7 Questions series:

"You made some unknown casting choices and filmed on a limited budget, and your film turned out to be one of the most interesting pieces I've seen for some time. As advice to some of the filmmakers who read this blog, how does one get a feel that they are moving in the right direction on a project? How does one garner support from those inside the film and outside of it?

The first question is what is the definition of the right direction? For me it is when something affects you or intrigues you. You have to be your own guinea pig and be affected before it can transfer to someone else. Trust yourself and your instincts and the people who are supposed to be attracted to your project will find it and support it. It's just energy and there is not trick in it. Just truth and honesty.

To go further, don't pay attention to the haters. There will be a lot of them. It's not that they mean you direct harm, but they have so much self doubt in themselves, and misery loves company."

---I am frequently amazed by the way friends will accept the Tomatometer's opinion as gospel summary truth about a new release.  It's not that I mind Rotten Tomatoes' input, but I can't see why one should accept the aggregate view of hundreds of critics as necessarily correct, because I sometimes find myself disagreeing with them.  For Scanners, Jim Emerson explores this important problem in "The Lonely Critic."

---How to best explain the economic meltdown?  Tom Tomorrow turns to dystopian post-apocalyptic movies, of course!  


Sam Juliano said...

Many thanks Film Dr. for mentioning Allan's great piece on BOB LE FLAMBEUR.
Of all the Melvilles my personal favorite is LE CIRCLE ROUGE, but BOB, LE SAMURAI and ARMY OF SHADOWS are often placed on top by fans of each.

FilmDr said...

My pleasure, Sam.