David Lynch, Chuck Close, Susan Orlean, and a sampling of others describe the mysteries of inspiration that generate their ideas in this short but sweet film by Andrew Norton. Read the rest
Given that film criticism is overwhelmingly white and male, film critic (and great Twitter follow) Valerie Complex decided to put together a list of women of color currently working in the field. She points out that while they may be underrepresented at larger mainstream publications, there are still many talented women of color working at smaller sites, self-publishing, or freelancing. And as she notes:
The perspectives of women of color are needed now more than ever. Especially, with the overwhelming amount of tone deaf articles produced in the media as of late (mainly by white men and women). In the Google age, why people are still oblivious to women of color who write and review film and entertainment is beyond me. But alas, here I am, writing this to inform the masses that in fact, women of color love film, love entertainment, like to write about it, and write about it very well.
Complex’s ever-growing list includes information on which sites these women write for as well as links to their personal Twitter handles. So if you’re a person who enjoys following film critics on Twitter, consider adding some (or all!) of these ladies to your feed. You can see the full list over on Black Girl Nerds. Read the rest
Though it might not be the most obvious film trope, this new Fandor video points out that movies in the ’80s and ’90s were filled with scenes in which characters went down some kind of slide. Fandor posits that these scenes were designed to mimic the feeling of an amusement park ride or water slide, which were becoming increasingly popular at the time. And they provided a kind of thrilling visual escapism from the turbulent social and political climate of the era. You can watch the full video essay right here:
The fantastic light-up dance floor from Saturday Night Fever (1977) will go up for auction in a couple of weeks. The 24' x 36' floor, outfitted with more than 250 lights, was built and installed at Brooklyn's 2001 Odyssey nightclub specifically for the film. When the place closed in 2005, former employee Vito Bruno bought it. Auction house Profiles in History expects it to fetch $1 to $1.5 million.
Can you dig it? I knew that you could.
With the death of author William Peter Blatty on January 13 at 88, I could not help but be reminded that, exactly 43 years ago on that date, at age 15 I first saw The Exorcist, for which he had written the screenplay based on his earlier book. He also exerted strong control over the production.
It was a time when I was able to see many films due to a decent allowance from a generous father. The previous year, my mother had taken me to see The Godfather at the Loew’s Orpheum theater on 86th street just off Third Ave in Manhattan.
It was a big deal because at age 14, and at that time in 1972, there was a lot in The Godfather most kids my age had never seen (we still had only seven TV channels; no cable, no internet). To top it off, a friend of mine was an usher at what I hazily remember as a Trans-Lux Cinema on Third Avenue just off 57th street, and he offered to sneak me into a showing of Last Tango in Paris. I was a big Brando fan, and I definitely saw a lot in that film I had not seen before. (On the other hand, you’ve probably never seen an usher in a movie theater.)
I’d also watched about 10 zillion horror movies on WPIX’s Chiller Theater during the preceding decade, and was extremely curious about why people were so freaked out about The Exorcist. Instead of going on opening day, my usual habit, I decided to wait until the lines abated. Read the rest