What is weird? 366 Weird Movies (not yet complete but has over 200 entries) is a substantial tribute to celluloid oddities and unconventionals, loaded with interesting essays and outside links. Some good, some bad, and some very bad. Here's just a few: Buckaroo Banzai, Robot Monster, Rubber, Rocky Horror, Zardoz, 2001, Skidoo, 5000 Fingers of Dr. T, Death Bed: The Bed That Eats, Evil Dead II, Glen or Glenda, Manos, Pan's Labyrinth, Time Bandits, Pink Flamingos, Uncle Boonmee, and good lord Santa and the Ice Cream Bunny.
The Galactic Civil War had one pernicious side effect: fighters on both sides neglected their cultural heritage in the name of military expediency.A Handy Guide to the Archaeology of Rogue One: A Star Wars Story, an analysis rich with links to the deepest layers of overthought.
"When Words Fail in Movies," "The Elevator," "A Homeless Ghost: The Moving Camera and its Analogies," "A Theory of Film Music" (a reply to the previously posted "The Marvel Symphonic Universe"), "The Revenant by Tarkovsky," "Fritz Lang," "The Dark Knight--Creating the Ultimate Antagonist," "Honolulu Mon Amour," and "Sound Unseen: The Acousmatic Jeanne Dielman" were just a few of the videos selected multiple times as "The Best Video Essays of 2016" (see also 2014 and 2015, previously). But one response chose to honor a series of parodies of the form: Why is Cinema, e.g. "Screenwriters! Do the Best Words Now!"
Billy Lynn's Long Halftime Walk is the latest film by Ang Lee and premiered this week at two theaters. It also happens to be the latest major experiment with HFR (High Frame Rate, previously) in a major motion picture since Peter Jackson's Hobbit trilogy. But wheras Jackson shot at 48 fps, Lee has gone all the way up to 120 fps. The results? Well, reactions are mixed, but Slate's Daniel Engber tries to get at why that might be.
From Afghanistan to Zimbabwe, the best of "worldly cinema" according to Reddit users. The individual country threads provide alternate suggestions. The list is as idiosyncratic as can be expected from a Reddit poll: entries on Niger, Nigeria and Palestine had to be deleted because the threads were downvoted to death, Vietnamese cinema does not exist at all and the Best Swedish Movie Ever is [spoiler]. It is, however, a powerful reminder that movies are made everywhere. [more inside]
The 100 greatest films of the 21st century (so far), as determined by 177 film critics from around the world.
“[John Landis] thought it would be really great box office,” director Jonathan Lynn told BuzzFeed. “He thought that what would happen was that people, having enjoyed the film so much, would then go back and pay again and see the other endings.” Here’s The Odd Way Audiences Experienced ‘Clue’ 30 Years Ago (Andrew Husband, Uproxx) Previously: Mrs. White, in the marketing office, with a focus group
Bruce Wayne Vs. The World (SLYT)
Now that the Ghostbusters reboot has finally hit the big screen amid generally positive reviews (with a healthy dollop of wailing and teeth gnashing), someone has come forward with her very own personal two cents on the subject: Violet Ramis Stiel, daughter of the late Harold Ramis, writes about her memories of the original films, her feelings about the new film and the nature of reboots for Splitsider.
Bitch Flicks offers a number of pop culture related essays (mostly film) from their recent website event, Ladies of the 1980s Theme Week. [more inside]
Back in January, AV Club started a series called "A History of Violence", which discusses the most groundbreaking action films, year by year, starting with Bullitt in 1968. Last week after ten entries, they have finally circled back to the car chase film and arguably one of the peaks of the genre: Walter Hill's The Driver. [more inside]
Actors have to go through a lot of repetitive interviews when they're out promoting a film. So you would imagine they would welcome something totally unique. At least, that's the theory when Jordan Peele and Keegan-Michael Key stopped by the First We Feast YouTube channel several months ago to promote their movie Keanu, discuss their careers... and consume the spiciest chicken wings known to man.
In order to expand the discussion of black cinema beyond #OscarsSoWhite, Slate put together a panel of cinema experts and historians to create The Black Film Canon - fifty important films by black directors, showcasing the black cinematic voice spanning over half a century. (SLSlate)
Cinema Palettes is a Twitter account that takes frames from films old, new and those to come and then breaks down the color palette of that frame.
Every 70s Movie: The Best, The Worst, The Weirdest, and Everything in Between. A new review a day since October 2010.
The Internet's gift to movie geeks that just keeps on giving is out with another video. Tony Zhou (so many previouslies) makes an examination of the editing process in film with some particular examinations of Hanna and Her Sisters, In the Mood for Love and The Empire Strikes Back. And if that isn't enough to wet your editing whistle, have a look at CineFix's Top Ten Most Effective Editing Moments of All Time (Warning: Un Chien Andalou. I learned my lesson from last time).
Batman, remakes, TV spin-offs, comic adaptations — not much has changed in half a century. Here's what the summer movie schedule looked like in 1966. [more inside]
100 Years/100 Shots - Starting with Birth of a Nation in 1915 and ending with Mad Max: Fury Road in 2015, a series of iconic shots in film with one shot per year.
the DIY action film studio from the slums of Uganda that took over the Internet and made it plausible for anyone in the world to become an East African kung fu movie commando. [more inside]
The Walk of Life Project. Hypothesis: "Walk of Life" by Dire Straits is the perfect song to end any movie. (via Paleofuture)
What It’s Really Like to Work in Hollywood* (*If you’re not a straight white man.) (SLNYTimes, Interactive)
Much like Steven Spielberg and his longtime collaboration with John Williams, it’s incredibly difficult to imagine a Coen Brothers film without the indispensable work of Carter Burwell: [more inside]
Having fallen down the rabbit hole of British colonial cinema history, I thought to share some of the wonderful discoveries with you.
Key and Peele may have said their goodbyes to television, but they will soon return to the big screen in their first feature film "Keanu", whose red band NSFW trailer dropped today.
The Luttrell Psalter is a mid-14th century English illuminated manuscript containing a large number of illustrations of everyday life in medieval England. In 2008 the Psalter was adapted into a 20 minute short film for The Collection Museum in Lincoln, drawing on 35 scenes from the manuscript. There is also a blog describing the making of the film. [more inside]
"In order to recover a bit from a recent feeling of exhaustion, I spent a significant amount of this past weekend diligently sitting on my ass, in front of the television. On Saturday night, I popped in my copy of Woody Allen’s 'Manhattan,' which, among other things, is as stunningly designed a movie as I’ve ever seen. This is largely thanks to the work of Gordon Willis, a master cinematographer who, apart from his incredible work on this film, was also responsible for photographing an alarmingly high share of my favorite movies of all time: 'The Godfather,' 'The Godfather Part II,' 'All the President’s Men,' and 'The Parallax View,' among others." [more inside]
ESPN uses the "30 for 30" series to tackle the most important sporting event of the Cold War. [more inside]
Atlas Obscura (?!) presents an inventory of cinematic worms by size, smallest to largest (SLYT)
One year ago, the Saturday Night Live family lost one of its greatest talents when Jan Hooks passed away at the age of 57. Though there are many SNL players that fade into obscurity once their term at Rockefeller Center is up, most people are surprised that, aside from a recurring role on 30 Rock, Jan Hooks had pretty much disappeared since the turn of the 21st century. Grantland provides a bittersweet look back into her history and into what happened during those years.
Many of those who went to see Furious 7 earlier this year went because it was, by all accounts, a raucous good time. And there were also a number of us who were extremely curious about how they were able to finish the film after the tragic death of star Paul Walker. Variety currently has an article up on the methods used to replicate Walker for certain scenes and, most intriguingly, an imgur gallery has been posted of all the shots that were completed after Walker died.
This Friday, people will be able to go to the theater and see yet another interpretation of J.M. Barrie's "Peter Pan". Such news does not necessarily excite Barrie fans, given the middling results of some past interpretations (and Pan isn't being received much better). But the AV Club's Ryan Vlastelica argues they can take heart that the best "Peter Pan" movie was already made... in 2003.
"The Fall" is a 2006 adventure fantasy film directed by Tarsem Singh. The opening title sequence is the "perfect example of a director’s absolute control over his vision." Ebert described the movie as "a mad folly, an extravagant visual orgy, a free-fall from reality into uncharted realms. Surely it is one of the wildest indulgences a director has ever granted himself. Tarsem... has made a movie that you might want to see for no other reason than because it exists. There will never be another like it. " [more inside]
Filmmaker Pablo Fernandez Eyre recently made a discovery: Director Alfred Hitchcock and editor George Tomasini judged that a sequence which worked once would work twice, such as these two famous scenes from Psycho and The Birds. If you liked that, Eyre is fond of the side-by-side comparisons, such as these similar videos of The Good, The Bad and the Ugly and the Star Wars saga.
Pre-Code.com is an incredibly detailed exploration of the Hollywood cinema that fell between the advent of sound motion pictures in 1927 and the Motion Picture Production Code of 1930 (Which wasn't enforced until 1934. Huh? Here's a timeline). This includes a number of familiar titles such as All Quiet on the Western Front, Dracula, Duck Soup, It Happened One Night and The Public Enemy. But we also get a peek at the more obscure and daring titles such as Baby Face, I’m no Angel, Smarty, Safe in Hell and Night Nurse.
Tony Zhou is back with a love letter / lament for his cinematically ubiquitous hometown: "Vancouver Never Plays Itself".
History vs Hollywood fact-checks "based on a true story/inspired by true events" popular movies, and tries to match faces and events with their real-life counterparts.
Top Ten Best Lesbian Movies: 10 Queer Movies That Don’t Suck. | Top Ten Queer Girl Movies That Don’t Suck: Best Lesbian Movies Part #2 (Autostraddle). Previously: "I bind you, Hollywood, from doing harm", Maybe not the warmest color.
Hollywood's reboot-a-palooza continues with the recent release of "The Man From U.N.C.L.E.", based on the classic 1960's television series starring Robert Vaughn and David McCallum. However, this is far from the first time the property has been in theaters. [more inside]
After some recent intriguing revelations concerning Quentin Tarantino's "Hateful Eight" (such as it's wide 70mm release this Christmas and that it will feature the first Ennio Morricone Western score in over four decades), the full trailer has finally arrived.
It starts with one of cinema's most famous paintings (you may have seen it before), but it doesn't end there. Guardian contributor Alex Godfrey does a little investigating into a famous movie prop and discovers the life of its subject, John Weaving.
What was once a series content to celebrate simple boy-racer pleasures, the seventh Fast & Furious fell prey to a recent tentpole-film affliction: ridiculously over-complicated plotting. Iron Man 3 and Mission: Impossible – Rogue Nation writer Drew Pearce draws an analogy for this blockbuster bloat, responsible for routinely pushing run times over the two-hour mark: “Much as I love a prog-rock album, if it’s a pop song I like it to be short and sweet, and I think it has more impact that way. And summer blockbusters are very proggy right now.” Mission impenetrable: are Hollywood blockbusters losing the plot?