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Blue Velvet is a film directed by David Lynch. It is about a young boy’s journey into manhood. It features such spectacles as a severed ear, Al from Quantum Leap creepily lip-syncing “In Dreams”, some incredible Oedipal sex, Isabella Rossellini in various states of undress and mental health, and young love. Golly!
Keith Staskiewicz: Hey, Darren, what’s that you’re chewing?
Darren Franich: That chewing gum I like is coming back in style. Hey, Keith, what’s that you’re drinking?
Df: Heineken? F— that s—! Pabst! Blue! Ribbon! Now let’s talk about Blue Velvet, »
- Darren Franich and Keith Staskiewicz
I remember the summer of 1982 quite fondly. That was a very good summer for cinema, well at least for a 9-year old boy. Because my parents rarely ventured to the cinema -- that was an event saved for New Years Eve and Summer vacation -- I can easily list the eleven films that I watched in movie theaters prior to that summer: Star Wars, The Empire Strikes Back, The Elephant Man, The Black Hole, Raiders of the Lost Arc, Chariots of Fire, Popeye, Superman, Superman II, Moonraker, and The Muppet Movie. I saw every one of those films with my parents (or at least my mother). The summer of 1982 marked when I started going to the cinema with friends (though usually with a parental chaperon) -- which was a different viewing experience altogether! As I remember it, I was in the local movie theater every week that summer; though that is probably an exaggeration, »
- Don Simpson
Over the course of his long and fruitful career, David Lynch has made some of the most striking, memorable contributions to the world of cinema, including strange, beloved classics like "Eraserhead," "The Elephant Man," "Blue Velvet" and "Mulholland Drive" (not to mention the incredible television series "Twin Peaks"). But what many people don't know is that Lynch has made incredible contributions to the world of music, and he has recently released his latest foray into the music world in a strange electro-pop single called "Good Day Today."
After an initial blast of noise, the track settles into a minimalist electro groove that propels and pulsates while Lynch's digitally-manipulated voice intones lyrics like "So tired of fire/ So tired of smoke" before arriving at the chorus: "I want to have a good day today." Considering the source, it's actually a pretty straightforward little pop song whose beat wouldn't necessarily be out »
- Kyle Anderson
Director David Lynch (Blue Velvet) has released his first original electronic single “Good Day Today”, backed with the narcotic blues track “I Know”, on iTunes. Lynch has signed the track to UK indie label Sunday Best Recordings. Sunday Best has commissioned a set of remixes of “Good Day Today” set for release in January.
While this is Lynch’s first original electronic single, the legendary filmmaker has been creating music for decades. He composed bits of music for Wild at Heart, Twin Peaks: Fire Walk with Me, Mulholland Drive, and Rabbits. He also produced and wrote lyrics for Julee Cruise’s first two albums, “Floating Into the Night” and “The Voice of Love”. Lynch recently collaborated on the album “Dark Knight of the Soul” with Sparklehouse and Danger Mouse. Click here to go buy “Good Day Today” on iTunes and hit the jump for the full press release.
- Matt Goldberg
The Odds: Steve Pond reports that “The King’s Speech” was received very warmly by Oscar voters who attended its first official Academy screening on Saturday night at the 1,000-seat Samuel Goldwyn Theater, which one member told him was about 85% full. (According to Pond, “The turnout appears to be about the same as the attendance for ‘The Social Network,’ which also drew a strong reaction when it screened at the Goldwyn in early October.”) Another Academy member shared with Pond his immediate reaction: “Of course it will get all the English vote,” a key constituency that could prove to be a difference-maker in a close best picture race.
The Hollywood Reporter: Leslie Bruce, Randee Dawn, Todd Longwell, Carita Rizzo, Lauren Schutte, and Andrew Wallenstein profile — as part of the weekly magazine’s annual “Next Gen” special edition — a number of individuals who had breakthrough years in 2010 and have growing influence in the industry, »
- Mary Skawinski
Production Designer and Costume Designer Patricia Norris, a frequent David Lynch collaborator, will receive the Art Directors Guild’s Lifetime Achievement Award at the Adg's 15th Annual Excellence in Production Design Awards on February 5, 2011, at the Beverly Hilton Hotel. Norris, only the second woman to be awarded the Adg's Lifetime Achievement Award (Jan Scott was the first in 2001), has been nominated for five Academy Awards in the Best Costume Design category: Days of Heaven (1978), The Elephant Man (1980), Victor Victoria (1982), 2010 (1984), and Sunset (1989). Previous recipients of Adg Lifetime Achievement Awards are Production Designers Ken Adam, Robert Boyle, Albert Brenner, Henry Bumstead, Roy Christopher, Stuart Craig, Bill Creber, John Mansbridge, Terence Marsh, Harold Michelson, Jan Scott, Paul Sylbert and Dean Tavoularis. The information below is the Adg's press release: Norris began her career in the film industry as a stock girl in the wardrobe department at MGM [...] »
- Andre Soares
HollywoodNews.com: Academy Award-winning Production Designer and Costume Designer Patricia Norris will be presented with a Lifetime Achievement Award at the Art Directors Guild’s 15th Annual Excellence in Production Design Awards on February 5, 2011, it was announced today by Thomas A. Walsh, Adg Council President, and Awards co-producers Dawn Snyder and Tom Wilkins. The award will be presented at a black-tie industry gathering at the Beverly Hilton Hotel.
Norris began her career in the film industry as a stock girl in the wardrobe department at MGM Studios and worked her way up to become one of the industry’s most respected craft persons. In announcing this honor, Adg President Walsh said, “Patricia is one of only a very few American designers who have been able to successfully combine the dual practices of production and costume design for film and television.” She holds dual production and costume design credits for works »
- Linny Lum
This year has seen a glut of important musical anniversaries. We've had Chopin aplenty, plus Schumann and Mahler to boot. Samuel Barber's centenary (1910-1981) has also fallen during this eventful season, but I guess we're out of candles and there's no more cake. Why has this wonderful composer somehow missed the cut?
At the tender age of nine, Barber left this touching note for his mother:
"Dear Mother: I have written this to tell you my worrying secret. Now don't cry when you read it because it is neither yours nor my fault. I suppose I shall have to tell it now without any nonsense. To begin with I was not meant to be an athlete. I was meant to be a composer, »
Have a question about gay male entertainment? Contact me here (and be sure and include your city and state and/or country!
Q: There’s been a lot of on-line chatter about Glee’s upcoming take on The Rocky Horror Picture Show – how it looks like they’re toning the sexuality way down and gutting the transgender element. What do you think? – BrunnHilda, Santa Barbara, California
A: First, let me say upfront that I don’t identify as queer, I don’t see it as my mission or the mission of the entire Glbt community to subvert gender or sexual norms, and I’ve always thought my »
- Brent Hartinger
The IMDb250. A list of the top 250 films as ranked by the users of the biggest Internet movie site on the web. It is based upon the ratings provided by the users of the Internet Movie Database, which number into the millions. As such, it’s a perfect representation of the opinions of the movie masses, and arguably the most comprehensive ranking system on the Internet.
It’s because of this that we at HeyUGuys (and in this case we is myself and Barry) have decided to set ourselves a project. To watch and review all 250 movies on the list. We’ve frozen the list as of January 1st of this year. It’s not as simple as it sounds, we are watching them all in one year, 125 each.
This is our 38th update, my next five films watched for the project. You can find all our previous week’s updates here. »
- Gary Phillips
By Todd Garbarini
Freddie Francis had a long and prosperous career in the cinema, learning many areas of filmmaking by cutting his teeth as a stills photographer, clapper boy, camera loader and focus puller; he also worked on training films while in the army. Garnering enough experience led him to become a camera operator on films as diverse as The Tales of Hoffman (a favorite of George Romero’s and Martin Scorsese’s), Twice Upon a Time, and Beat the Devil. He also worked as a cinematographer on The Innocents, Night Must Fall, The Elephant Man, and Dune, while scoring two Oscars for shooting Sons and Lovers and Glory. In the midst of this, he managed to find time to direct more than his share of thrillers in the 1960’s and 1970’s, chief among them The Brain, Paranoiac, Nightmare, The Evil of Frankenstein, Dr. Terror’s House of Horrors, The Skull, »
- email@example.com (Cinema Retro)
Since ancient Rome, the circus dazzled audiences with trained animals, jugglers and acrobats. More modern circus’s feature acrobats, clowns, fire eaters, trapeze acts and unicyclists. Here’s our list of top 10 circus and sideshow films including “The Elephant Man” from director David Lynch, “Something Wicked This Way Comes”, and the Tod Browning classics “Freaks”, “The Unholy Three” and “The Unknown” starring Lon Chaney. Also a few popular upcoming releases such as “Water for Elephants” starring Robert Pattinson (The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn - Part 1) and “Carnies” starring Doug Jones (Hellboy, Frankenstein), Chris Staviski and Reggie Bannister. 1. Freaks, starring Wallace Ford Directed by Tod Browning Synopsis: A circus’ beautiful trapeze artist [...] »
- Brian Corder
Actor and musician known as Bruno S, chosen by Werner Herzog to play social misfits in his films
Werner Herzog is a singular film director, drawn to bizarre characters and situations in strange surroundings, with a preoccupation with outsiders who refuse to conform to a limited social structure. So it was not surprising that he was drawn to Bruno Schleinstein, known and credited only as Bruno S, who has died of heart failure aged 78. Even if one had no idea of Bruno's history, one could not fail to sense that there was something extra-artistic in his performances in the title roles of the two films he made with Herzog: The Enigma of Kaspar Hauser (Jeder für Sich und Gott Gegen Alle, 1974) and Stroszek (1977). With his jerky gestures, staccato speech and staring eyes, there seemed to be a thin line between the actor and the characters.
Bruno S, who never knew who his father was, »
With perhaps the noteworthy exception of Mulholland Dr., David Lynch has never been at his surrealist best as he was in Blue Velvet, the film that saved his career following his spectacular flop, Dune. David Lynch faced a crucial turning point in 1984. The 38-year-old director of one art-house hit (Eraserhead) and one Best Picture-nominated classic (The Elephant Man) had added another picture to his resume: a big-budget flop. Following the spectacular failure of the sci-fi epic Dune, the movie adaptation of Frank Herbert's seminal novel, Lynch found himself at a career crossroads: should he continue to make big-budget films at the sacrifice of artistic control, perhaps sacrificing the quality of the pictures themselves in the process, or take a different route: making smaller, lower-budget films with greater creative leeway? Much to our benefit (as well as his own), the former painter, used to having creative control, chose the latter. »
The feature documentary 'Horses', from writer/director Liz Mermin (The Beauty Academy of Kabul, Shot in Bombay), has been shortlisted for the Best Cinema Documentary award at the Grierson Awards which will take place on the 2nd November in London's BFI Southbank. The doc is narrated by actor John Hurt (V for Vendetta, The Elephant Man) and looks at Ireland's horse-racing culture which has produced some of the finest athletes in the world. The 77 minute feature doc looks to draw audiences into the lives of three of them over the course of a difficult racing year -- focusing not on jockeys or trainers, but on the horses themselves. »
Filmmaker Angela Ismailos decides that the best way to learn about cinema is by interviewing several veteran movie directors. This is the central idea for the new documentary, The Great Directors. I would say that the film offers an overview of the world’s best filmmakers, but the interview subjects are from North America and Europe. It’s a shame that the Middle East, Asia, India, and Australia are not represented. Perhaps they will be included in a follow-up sequel. The directors included offer some interesting insights into the history of cinema.
A talk with Italian filmmaker, Bernardo Bertolucci who relates a story about a childhood encounter with Pier Paolo Pasolini that sparked an interest in cinema, begins the film. Later he talks about his work including his censor problems over Last Tango In Paris (some countries banned it for decades). In France we meet Catherine Briellant who also had »
- Jim Batts
Hollywood films have always been rife with images of the disabled, frequently casting them as misunderstood pariahs, idiot henchmen, or occasionally malevolent geniuses, filled with wrath at their despised place in the world. But rarely is there anything like Johnny Handsome, a film which deftly avoids making any sort of statement about disability by avoiding making a statement on virtually anything at all, shoehorning its sarcastically named title character into a plot so conventional it’s virtually weightless. In fact, were it not for Mickey Rourke spending half of the movie looking like a grilled cheese sandwich gone terribly wrong, you probably wouldn’t give it a second thought. But the effect of his makeup is so strange, and so belabored upon, that you can’t help but feel that there’s some considerable distance between the intended and the achieved effect, and wonder exactly what the intended effect was. »
- Anders Nelson
Joseph Merrick suffered from a disfiguring disease and became famous as a sideshow curiosity in Victorian England, where he was nicknamed The Elephant Man.
The Hangover star admits he felt a strange kinship with Merrick, and would often look in the mirror as a kid and imagine his face to be deformed too.
Recalling David Lynch's 1980 movie The Elephant Man, Cooper tells Details magazine, "I became obsessed with this motherf**ker. I was crying. I couldn't move. He was a beautiful guy, f**kin' beautiful. He had tremendous hope. He struggled to be a man - because he was a man."
Cooper says the connection has continued throughout his career - he played Merrick on stage for his graduate thesis at the Actors' Studio Drama School in New York, and he's gone through great lengths to get closer to the legend.
He adds, "I literally went to London and saw the cloak that Merrick wore."
Merrick was 27 when he died in 1890, due to accidental asphyxia, caused by the weight of his head as he lay down. »
Dennis Hopper. One of the greats in cinema history. A consistent rebel in Hollywood, he pushed envelopes as often as he ripped them up and pissed on the scraps. And even when you could tell he was doing a film just for a paycheck, he did the most with that role and made us as film fans all the happier. I’m looking at you, “Waterworld”. So here at the Criterion Cast, I’ve decided to do a top 10 of my favorite Dennis Hopper roles in film. It also doesn’t hurt that he is in the Criterion Collection, in the TV series “Fishing With John”. Check it out if you haven’t already.
10. “Speed” (1994) – As villainous bomb expert Howard Payne, he more or less steals the movie from Keanu Reeves and Sandra Bullock. But that’s like stealing candy from two rocks. I enjoy this film though, considering the »
- James McCormick
Director Peter Bogdanovich.
Interviewing Peter Bogdanovich for the April 2002 issue of Venice Magazine was a thrill for me. Like Francis Coppola, John Frankenheimer, and William Friedkin before him, Bogdanovich was one of those filmmakers whose one-sheets hung on my bedroom walls growing up. Plus the fact that he himself had a renowned career as a film historian and interviewer of his own childhood heroes, such as John Ford, Howard Hawks, Orson Welles, and dozens of others, made our talk a real feast.
Not long after the article was printed, I received a letter with a New York City postmark. The note enclosed said simply: “Dear Alex, thanks for doing your homework so well, and thanks for the good vibes. All the best to you of love and luck, Peter Bogdanovich.”
Our chat remains one of my favorites during my 15 year tenure as a film writer. --A.S.
- The Hollywood Interview.com
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