5 items from 2017
If the saying "no guts, no glory" holds true, then there's a serious discrepancy happening in the world of horror. Though women -- your scream queens, your final girls -- have so often offered up their guts to genre films, men are still predominately pulling the strings behind the scenes. That's not the case with Xx, a horror anthology featuring four killer tales by four female directors: Annie Clark (aka rocker St. Vincent, making her directorial debut), Jovanka Vuckovic, Karyn Kusama and Roxanne Benjamin. The story of how Xx came to be -- and how it hopes to upend the horror industry -- is best told by the women behind it.
A director and student of horror maestro Guillermo del Toro, Vuckovic conceived Xx after noticing that despite the horror anthology's extensive history, female creatives have been virtually absent. She partnered with producer Todd Brown of Xyz Films to change that.
Jovanka Vuckovic (writer-director »
Judy Garland’s infamously difficult, traumatizing childhood has become a disturbing Hollywood legend in the year since her untimely death at age 47. But now, a new autobiography claims that Garland’s experiences on the set of Victor Fleming’s “The Wizard of Oz” are worse than previously reported. According to Garland’s late husband Sid Luft, whose autobiography “Judy and I: My Life with Judy Garland” is finally being posthumously published, says that she was frequently groped and molested by the actors playing the Munchkins.
Read More: ‘Emerald City’ Producer: NBC’s Crazy ‘Wizard of Oz’ Adaptation Will Be ‘100% Less Rape-y’ Than ‘Game of Thrones’
“They would make Judy’s life miserable on set by putting their hands under her dress,” he writes in the book. “The men were 40 or more years old. They thought they could get away with anything because they were so small.” The book does not »
- Vikram Murthi
Tom Jolliffe on the death of good screenwriting in Hollywood…
Awards season is in full swing, so it seems somewhat ironic to come and bemoan the dearth of good screenwriting within the modern studio system, but I’m going to anyway. Putting aside the award nominated films, my focus is more on those films that are more financially motivated or targeted toward genre fans. Let’s face it, La La Land, whilst it won’t redefine screenwriting, is going to be hard to pick apart. There is still good work out there, but it’s fewer and far between, and those films where the returns matter above all else, seem to be becoming increasingly more and more dumbed down. It seems like writers now get hired to write any old guff and the quality of the final draft is of no consequence.
The first subject of my ire is Avi Lerner, »
- Amie Cranswick
“You are nothing but rotting meat,” the grinning hermit declares from deep within the bowels of the cavernous hideout he’s made for himself in post-apocalyptic Mexico. His name is Mariano (“Miss Bala” star Noé Hernandez), his face is twisted into a demonic gnarl of primitive desire, and he’s ready to prove his point with depravities so vile they make Gaspar Noé and the rest of the world’s reigning shock auteurs look prudish by comparison.
Unfolding like a Nuevo Cine Mexicano response to “Saló,” Emiliano Rocha Minter’s “We Are the Flesh” takes the defining tropes of his country’s contemporary filmmaking, liberates them from the burden of narrative logic, and stretches them across the screen like Hannibal Lecter hanging a victim by the flaps of his skin. Whereas “Heli,” “Battle of Heaven,” and other recent Mexican breakouts have told stories that were punctuated with acts of extreme barbarity and sexual violence, »
- David Ehrlich
Above: Mondo poster for The Graduate (Mike Nichols, USA, 1967); artist: Rory Kurtz; lettering: Jay Shaw.On my daily movie poster Tumblr I don’t make a habit of posting fan art or art prints—call them what you will—because I’m most interested in the intersection of commerce and art that is the theatrical movie poster. But I make an exception when something stands out, and nothing stood out last year quite like Rory Kurtz’s beautiful, elegant and unexpected Mondo illustration for The Graduate, which quite rightly racked up over 200 more likes than even its nearest competitor. But its nearest competitor was fan art too: a brilliant poster for Badlands by the insanely talented Adam Juresko, whose art poster for In the Mood for Love (featured in my Maggie Cheung article) was also in the top four. What makes art posters easy to like—beyond their extraordinary artistry »
5 items from 2017
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