The House


James Garner

1. "James Garner Dead at 86." Gene Seymour remember the film and television legend.

"He was the logical synthesis of John Wayne and Jack Benny. Interlace the Duke's measured drawl and virile swagger with Benny's comic timing and shrewd use of wordless exasperation, and you have James Garner, who died Saturday night in Los Angeles at 86. His persona: Laid-back pragmatist...or, if you needed to be a tad more provocative about it, coolly principled coward. It endeared him to generations of moviegoers and television viewers. Garner's most cherished roles shared, to varying degrees, a bent gallantry that saw little need to advertise or flaunt itself before others. In his entry on The Rockford Files—the 1974-80 TV series in which Garner played a perennially, often unjustly besieged private detective living in a trailer—Gene Sculatti's The Catalog of Cool summed up 'Gentleman Jim's beat message: Very few expenditures of energy are worth the effort. Like Zen, man.'"

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TAGS: anthony michael d'agostino, benedict cumberbatch, bernardo bertolucci, bilge ebiri, david lynch, Elaine Stritch, gene seymour, James Garner, last tango in paris, louis c.k., magic in the moonlight, me and you, sierra mannie, the imitation game, twin peaks, twin peaks: fire walk with me, woody allen


Elaine Stritch

1. "Elaine Stritch R.I.P." The tart-tongued Brodway actress and singer is dead at 89.

"Plain-spoken, egalitarian, impatient with fools and foolishness, and admittedly fond of cigarettes, alcohol and late nights--she finally gave up smoking and drinking in her 60s, after learning she had diabetes, though she returned to alcohol in her 80s--Ms. Stritch might be the only actor ever to work as a bartender after starring in a Broadway show, and she was completely unabashed about her good-time-girl attitude. 'I'm not a bit opposed to your mentioning in this article that Frieda Fun here has had a reputation in the theater, for the past five or six years, for drinking,' she said to a reporter for The New York Times in 1968. 'I drink, and I love to drink, and it's part of my life."

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TAGS: conan o'brien, dave franco, dawn of the planet of the apes, Elaine Stritch, kyle buchanan, larry smith, louis c.k., Matt Reeves, orange is the new black, tinder


Gone Girl

1. "Gone Girl to Open New York Film Festival." The David Fincher-directed thriller, starring Ben Affleck, will be the opening night gala screening Sept. 26.

"The World Premiere of David Fincher's Gone Girl will open the New York Film Festival, the Film Society of Lincoln Center said Thursday. The film, starring Oscar-winner Ben Affleck, Rosamund Pike, Neil Patrick Harris, and Tyler Perry, will launch the 52nd annual festival September 26 at Alice Tully Hall, while later that night the after-party will return to Tavern on the Green. Gone Girl, based on the global best seller by Gillian Flynn, features Fincher's return to the festival after The Social Network opened the 2010 New York Film Festival. 20th Century Fox and New Regency will open Gone Girl in theaters on October 3. "

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TAGS: at the movies, ben affleck, blue velvet, conservatism, dave itzkoff, david fincher, david lynch, dennis hopper, gone girl, ignatiy vishnevetsky, john cassavetes, kara vanderbijl, liberalism, love streams, magic in the moonlight, new york film festival, richard brody, roger ebert, woody allen


Kirsten Dunst

1. "I'm sorry for coining the phrase 'Manic Pixie Dream Girl.'" In 2007, Nathan Rabin invented the term in a review. Then he watched in queasy disbelief as it seemed to take over pop culture.

"In the years since I wrote about the MPDG, I've been floored by how pervasive the trope has become. At first it was just a few scattered mentions in other critics' reviews. Then Zooey Deschanel strummed a ukulele and became a Hollywood It girl and suddenly the MPDG was everywhere. During one particularly strange day in 2011, I read that Cameron Crowe (the man behind Elizabethtown, as well as Almost Famous and much else) was asked about the phrase and replied, 'I dig it...I keep thinking I'll run into Nathan Rabin and we'll have a great conversation about it.' This blew my mind. I have been writing about pop culture for a long time but I could honestly not believe that Cameron Crowe knew my name and thought about meeting me someday. But the more the cultural myth of the Manic Pixie Dream Girl expanded, the more my ambivalence about it grew."

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TAGS: billboard, brazil, diego costa, film crit hulk, hillary clinton, james bond, jason derulo, manic pixie dream girl, nathan rabin, Phil Mulloy, robert christgau, sara maria vizcarrondo, the daily show, the huffington post, world cup


Israeli Filmmakers

1. "Israeli filmmakers call for ceasefire." A group of Israeli film-makers took a stand against the current political conflict today at an emotional press conference at the Jerusalem Film Festival.

"We, the undersigned, Israeli directors whose films participate in the Jerusalem Film Festival, believe that in these violent days, it is impossible to talk only about cinema while ignoring the killing and horrifying events around us. We are scared too. Some of us are parents. Our children are terrified of the code red sirens and of the thundering sounds of warfare. We do not seek revenge and do not believe in a military solution; this has proven futile in the past. Children in Gaza do not enjoy the protection of the Iron Dome systems. They have no residential secured spaces, and no sirens. hildren living in Gaza today are our partners in peace tomorrow. The killing and horror we inflict only push any diplomatic solution further away."

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TAGS: atlantic city, bozi gete, britney spears, charles v. bagli, efrat corem, film comment, frozen, grady hendrix, jerusalem film festival, Keren Yedaya, las vegas, madonna, metallica, miley cyrus, nadav lapid, Ronit Elkabetz, Shira Geffen, shlomi elkabetz, tali shalom ezer, tori amos, weird al yankovic


World Cup

1. "Germans End Long Wait: 24 Years and a Bit Extra." World Cup 2014: Germany Defeats Argentina in Final.

"For years, Brazilians had a phrase they would inevitably utter when things went wrong. 'Imagina na Copa,' they said after an endless traffic jam or a construction accident or an ugly rash of violence dominated the news—imagine if this happened during the World Cup. It became a foreboding warning, a pre-emptive sigh at the presumed disasters that lay ahead. Over five weeks, though, Brazil avoided any of the major catastrophes it feared. Thrilling games and entertaining soccer—as well as the national team's own stunning collapse—generally overshadowed any logistical issues, and the tournament was seen as a global success. So it was fitting, then, that in the tournament's final game, the Brazilians managed to dodge the ultimate on-field nightmare, too. It could have been calamitous. For Brazilians, the only thing worse than their national team's losing the trophy would have been for their neighbor Argentina to win it, and that possibility hung heavy over the fans at Estádio do Maracanã on Sunday. But there was no coronation for Lionel Messi and the Argentines, no party for Brazil's biggest rival. Instead it was Germany, on a gorgeous goal from Mario Götze just minutes before the game would have gone to a shootout, that celebrated its fourth World Cup title with a 1-0 victory after extra time."

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TAGS: aids, american horror story: freak show, argentina, brazil, charlie haden, germany, hiv, kathryn shattuck, sandy allen, truvada, wish i was here, world cup, Zach Braff


Alfred Hitchcock

1. "An Auteur Is Not a Brand." Richard Brody on why so many are piling on the idea of the auteur.

"That polemical side of auteurism is what fell away as the idea spread widely. Movies also have a role in civic life, and directors' political ideas are inextricable from their worldviews (and careful viewing entails distinguishing the orthodoxies of a studio or a government from a director's inflection of, or departure from, the official line). Yet politics and sociology have come to the fore again in the discussion of movies, for the very reason that auteurism has run rampant: the empiricism of critical discourse. Social trends and ideological casts are easy to talk about, as are the diverse traits of habit or style that render a formerly overlooked filmmaker distinguishable. But what makes a movie—and a filmmaker—great is something that veers toward the ineffable."

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TAGS: affluenza, armond white, auteurism, boy meets girl, boyhood, bright lights film journal, drew mcweeny, john landis, Kevin Asch, leos carax, nick schager, planet of the apes, richard brody, richard linklater, steve johnson, tim burton


Game of Thrones

1. "2014 Emmy Nominations." Game of Thrones tops nominations; Hannibal and The Americans snubbed.

"Cable continued to dominate the awards: Commercial broadcast networks claimed just two of six comedy slots, and were shut out of the drama and (as usual) movie and miniseries categories. Left out as series contenders were CBS's The Good Wife (though star Julianna Margulies and supporting players Christine Baranski and Josh Charles were nominated); HBO's Girls (though Lena Dunham and Adam Driver were); Showtime's Homeland (though Claire Danes and Mandy Patinkin were); and Fox's Golden Globe-winning Brooklyn Nine-Nine and its star, Andy Samberg (though supporting actor Andre Braugher won a nod)."

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TAGS: ambiancé, anders weberg, breaking bad, caught, emmy awards, fargo, game of thrones, hannibal, hollywood, homeland, i vinti, j. hoberman, Jeff Reichert, max ophüls, michael bay, michael koresky, Michelle Rodriguez, orange is the new black, orphan black, the americans, the good wife, true detective, zac efron


Steven Soderbergh

1. "Steven Soderbergh On Why He Really Quit Movies." The director talks about his new TV show, his old films, and the one-asshole theory of everything.

"And I'll tell you why. This country is too fucking big. I honestly think...In nature, if a cell gets too big, it divides. You can't come up with a set of rules that's going to work for 350 million people. You're just not. So we're stuck. Robert Kennedy had this great quote: '20 percent of people are against everything, all the time.' That's a big number now. And you know what? 'No' is easy. 'No' doesn't require any follow-up, commitment. 'Yes' is hard, 'yes' has to be worked on. It needs a lot of people to keep it as 'yes.' That's where we're at. When I'm president, we're going back to the Thirteen Colonies, is what we're going to do. It's a weird time. Because the trajectory...Wow, I look around and I'm alarmed. I guess every generation feels that way, I don't know, but I'm really alarmed. I talk to smart people who work in fields either, you know, neuro-cognition or social analysis, I go, 'Am I going nuts or is this thing going a certain direction, really fast?' All of them go, 'You're not imagining things.' And I go, 'What do we do?' This could turn into Mad Max, like tomorrow. The fabric is so thin, I feel like."

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TAGS: angelina jolie, before midnight, bilge ebiri, boyhood, christopher nolan, exodus: god of kings, forrest gump, jennifer lawrence, richard linklater, ridley scott, robert zemeckis, slacker, steven soderbergh, wesley morris


Taylor Swift

1. "For Taylor Swift, the Future of Music Is a Love Story." The singer-songwriter says artists and fans will still form deep bonds, but they will do it in new ways.

"In the YouTube generation we live in, I walked out onstage every night of my stadium tour last year knowing almost every fan had already seen the show online. To continue to show them something they had never seen before, I brought out dozens of special guest performers to sing their hits with me. My generation was raised being able to flip channels if we got bored, and we read the last page of the book when we got impatient. We want to be caught off guard, delighted, left in awe. I hope the next generation's artists will continue to think of inventive ways of keeping their audiences on their toes, as challenging as that might be."

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TAGS: boyhood, david fincher, drew harwell, gone girl, jack halberstam, michael koresky, nick pinkerton, reverse shot, richard linklater, tampa bay times, taylor swift, transgender, trigger warning






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