4 items from 2013
“You’ve got one minute, then I’m busy again.”
These are the words legendary filmmaker Peter Bogdanovich spoke to me as I stood on the set of his new movie, “Squirrels to the Nuts.” Unfortunately, I didn’t know I’d be talking to him at all at that moment. Was I supposed to get out my recorder, or was this just introductory chit chat? Regardless, I mumbled something about “The Sopranos” and sulked away.
And that would become my first experience on a movie set.
To Bogdanovich’s credit, he did respond to my “Sopranos” comment. In context, I mentioned that it had been so long since Bogdanovich’s last feature-length film -– 2001’s “The Cat’s Meow” -- that there's now an entire generation who know him only as Jennifer Melfi’s therapist. “As long as they know me,” he replied.
Let me back up a bit here. »
- Mike Ryan
During the summer of 1998, one of the two multiplexes in my modestly sized hometown devoted one of its sixteen screens to limited release films throughout the entire season. They showed a range of small, non-mainstream narrative works from that surprisingly indie-rich summer, including Darren Aronofsky’s Pi, Vincent Gallo’s Buffalo ’66, Wayne Wang’s Chinese Box, James Toback’s Two Girls and a Guy, Don Roos’s The Opposite of Sex, Whit Stilman’s The Last Days of Disco, Neil Labute’s Your Friends and Neighbors, and Mr. Jealousy, a film that almost nobody remembers Noah Baumbach made. Despite their nearby availability, I saw approximately zero of these films. I was thirteen years old, and my parents maintained their strict no-r policy. But it was enough for me that the names of these films showed up in the local paper, and that I saw their posters displayed through smudged plexiglass outside the box office as I bought »
- Landon Palmer
Witty, insightful and unapologetically New York, are just a few ways writer-director Noah Baumbach has been described. Born and raised in Park Slope, Brooklyn, Baumbach made his writing and directing debut with Kicking and Screaming, immediately drawing comparisons to both Woody Allen and Whit Stillman. Through his seminal film, he’s received an Academy Award nomination for his original screenplay The Squid and the Whale, and garnered critical acclaim for Margot at the Wedding and his recent black-and-white salute to the French New Wave, Frances Ha. We here at Sound On Sight are huge fans of the filmmaker, so we decided to rank his films from favourite to least favourite. Here are the results.
Note: Since only one writer voted for Highball, we’ve decided to not include a capsule review.
6: Mr. Jealousy
After a debut Kicking and Screaming that was insightful, moving, and endlessly witty, Baumbach’s second »
When the Brooklyn Academy of Music recently organized a series of iconic movies set in this outer borough, it was no surprise that writer-director Noah Baumbach’s “The Squid and the Whale” featured prominently among them. Released in 2005, but set in the pre-gentrification, pre-”Girls” 1980s, the semi-autobiographical portrait of two brothers coping with their parents’ divorce was shot on the same Park Slope streets where the 43-year-old filmmaker grew up.
(From the pages of the April 23 issue of Variety.)
The film is so lovingly rendered that even a non-native could understand one character’s apoplectic reaction to the news that his father would be moving to the other side of Prospect Park: “Across the park? Is that still Brooklyn?”
Indeed, there may be no more quintessentially New York filmmaker of Generation Y than Baumbach.
- Scott Foundas
4 items from 2013