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Interview: Damien Chazelle, Miles Teller and J.K. Simmons

12 April 2015 4:38 AM, PDT

In conversation with the director and stars of Whiplash

Let’s face it, this is a film about band practice.  Could there be anything more un-movie worthy?  Kids in band are usually seen in high school corridors trying to unwedgie their underwear from their ass cracks or picking the spitballs out of their mullets as they sit, alone, in the cafeteria.   This is a cinematic milieu traditionally of, say, a young Lindsey Lohan or Zac Efron.  But Whiplash is tenser and more fraught than any war movie since The Deer Hunter. »

- Dr. Garth Twa

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Past and Present at the 17th Thessaloniki Documentary Festival

12 April 2015 4:27 AM, PDT

By Lydia Papadimitriou.

Located in Greece’s northernmost region of Macedonia, Thessaloniki used to be a vibrant multicultural city under the Ottoman Empire, with Jews, Muslims and Christians speaking in Greek, Turkish, Slav-Macedonian/Bulgarian, Vlach, Ladino, among other languages. Annexed to Greece in 1912, it became gradually Hellenicised, first with the exchange of populations in the 1920s, and later because of the Holocaust, which all but eradicated the city’s Jewish population. This year, the city’s Jewish history was explored in a double-bill of medium-length documentaries.  Directed by the local filmmaker Stella Papastefanou Memories and Songs focused on Jewish survivors from Thessaloniki who reminisced about their endangered Spanish-based language, Ladino, and its old songs. »

- Lydia Papadimitriou

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