The House


Robert Drew

1. "Robert Drew, Cinema Verite Documentarian, Dies at 90." His son Thatcher Drew confirmed he died on Wednesday at his home in Sharon, Connecticut.

"Filmmaker Robert Drew, a pioneer of the modern documentary who in Primary and other movies mastered the intimate, spontaneous style known as cinema verite and schooled a generation of influential directors that included D.A. Pennebaker and Albert Maysles, has died at age 90. His son Thatcher Drew confirmed he died Wednesday at his home in Sharon, Connecticut. Starting in 1960 with Primary, Mr. Drew produced and sometimes directed a series of television documentaries that took advantage of such innovations as light hand-held cameras that recorded sound and pictures. With filmmakers newly unburdened, nonfiction movies no longer had to be carefully staged and awkwardly narrated. Directors could work more like journalists, following their subjects for hours and days at a time and capturing revealing moments."

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TAGS: amy nicholson, blossom, brian eno, david byrne, dick smith, israel, luc besson, lucy, palestine, primary, richard brody, robert drew, willa paskin


The Big Chill

1. "The Big Chill: These Are Your Parents." Lena Dunham on the Lawrence Kasdan film.

"You will grow up with certain friends who have been chosen for you purely because your parents don't mind sitting in lawn chairs next to their parents, can find something to talk about. Sometimes your mother will even see the other mothers socially, put on a bunch of gold rings and spray perfume in her henna-red hair and head out the door to meet them at ten past seven for a glass of wine. But you will know the difference between those friends and these old friends, these primal friends, these friends as entrenched as bone. You will know the difference even though you can't articulate it. You will just know that when they get together, whenever that is, the cadence of their speech changes, their laughs go up a register, they throw their heads back and shake their hair and that laughter comes unbidden, and at surprising times, and about things you don't think are funny. The laughter is catching, and soon the guys are laughing too, outside by the grill, ignoring their kids and letting the laughter move them. Their eyes soften and their foreheads smooth. They look like old photos."

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TAGS: david pierce, e.t., John Oliver, last week tonight, lena dunham, neil genzlinger, piracy, sam adams, star wars, steven boone, the big chill, the expendables 3, the verge, will mckinley


What Is Public?

1. "What Is Public?" Anil Dash on how the answer isn't so simple.

"It has so quickly become acceptable practice within mainstream web publishing companies to reuse people's tweets as the substance of an article that special tools have sprung up to help them do so. But inside these newsrooms, there is no apparent debate over whether it's any different to embed a tweet from the President of the United States or from a vulnerable young activist who might not have anticipated her words being attached to her real identity, where she can be targeted by anonymous harassers. What if the public speech on Facebook and Twitter is more akin to a conversation happening between two people at a restaurant? Or two people speaking quietly at home, albeit near a window that happens to be open to the street? And if more than a billion people are active on various social networking applications each week, are we saying that there are now a billion public figures? When did we agree to let media redefine everyone who uses social networks as fair game, with no recourse and no framework for consent?"

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TAGS: anil dash, Benedict Fitzgerald, bryan curtis, comic-con, devin faraci, Don Weis, grantland, indiana jones and the temple of doom, nick pinkerton, steven spielberg, the passion of the christ


TMZ

1. "The Down and Dirty History of TMZ." How a lawyer from the San Fernando Valley created a gossip empire and transformed himself into the most feared man in Hollywood, all by breaking a few long-held rules and, as rumor has it, lording over a notorious vault full of secrets.

"Accounts of [Harvey] Levin suggest that he's driven far less by a desire for personal fame and much more by a generalized, all-encompassing hunger: to be the best, to dominate the industry, to prove his naysayers wrong. He's a man of extremes (in the '90s, he was overweight; today, he's incredibly fit, doesn't drink, sleeps four hours a night, and looks younger than his 63 years). Former employees describe him as a 'mad genius,' 'all fast-twitch muscle,' and 'like he's taking the blue pills in Bourne Identity.' And it's that metabolism and bottomless hunger that's manifested in the site: When people call it all-consuming, they're both referring to its domination of its corner of the gossip landscape and the way it dominates the lives of its employees, including Levin himself."

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TAGS: Angelo Badalamenti, comic-con, david lynch, east village, garry winogrand, harvey levin, Julee Cruise, kim's video & music, mark feeney, metropolitan museum of art, sexual harassment, the boston globe, tmz, twin peak


Twin Peaks

1. "David Lynch: 'I've always loved Laura Palmer.'" Twin Peaks terrified TV audiences and made David Lynch a household name. Now, nearly 25 years later, he is returning to the scene of the crime, releasing unseen material from the movie prequel Fire Walk with Me.

"If you follow David Lynch into the woods he will not hold your hand. He cannot guarantee you will find your way home. He truly hopes that you’ll emerge unscathed. The director, painter and transcendental meditation disciple has never been one to explain his work and, on the occasion of the release of the Twin Peaks: The Entire Mystery box set, no measure of nostalgia will sway him. He's sitting on a chaise longue in a hotel suite not far from his Los Angeles home when we meet, exuding charisma and an egoless confidence. At 68, Lynch looks vital, present. He's dressed in his usual uniform: dark jacket, white shirt buttoned up, a blaze of rockabilly hair atop his weatherbeaten face. "Wanna take a look?' he says, nasal, deliberate. A Blu-ray box set is on the table, containing Twin Peaks seasons one and two, Fire Walk With Me and—here's the real prize—a previously unreleased 90 minutes of deleted and extended scenes from the movie."

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TAGS: charles ponce de leon, david bowie, david lynch, happy christmas, iggy azalea, Jake Kasdan, jessie ware, joe swanberg, questlove, sex tape, share it all, susan sarandon, the roots, twin peaks, twin peaks: fire walk with me, woody allen


Homophobia

1. "Hollywood's Homophobia Is Even Worse than You Think." GLAAD's "Studio Responsibility Index" finds Hollywood fails at LGBT representation.

"One of the best features of the GLAAD study is that they not only point out what's wrong with Hollywood and the current studio approach, they give advice as to how the situation can be improved in future years. This year's study asks studios to make a real effort to include L.G.B.T. characters in genre films, specifically the hugely popular superhero film franchises. Diversity in the comics world has, of late, been growing by leaps and bounds, but it's fairly scathing indictment that the only L.G.B.T. Marvel movie character in 2013 was a cameo from real-life MSNBC anchorman Thomas Roberts in Iron Man 3. Genre Y.A.-book franchises are often a great source for L.B.G.T. diversity which is why, believe it or not, The Mortal Instruments: City of Bones, receives some of the highest praise from GLAAD for it's inclusion of not one, but two fully fleshed out gay fan favorites."

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TAGS: a master builder, cameron diaz, fifty shades of grey, galaxy quest, glaad, hollywood, homophobia, jordan hoffman, sex tape, stephen follows, wallace shawn


The Judge

1. "Toronto Film Festival Lineup Announced." The festival has unveiled a first round of titles for its 2014 edition.

"The 39th Toronto International Film Festival has announced its initial slate of galas and special presentations, which includes 37 world premieres and several films with Oscar ambitions. The Judge, which stars Robert Downey Jr. as a big-city lawyer who reluctantly returns home and ends up defending his revered father (Robert Duvall) against criminal charges, will have its world premiere in Toronto. His Avengers pal, Chris Evans, will unveil his own directorial debut in Toronto, titled Before We Go. Also noteworthy: James Gandolfini's final film, The Drop, which also stars Tom Hardy and Noomi Rapace; another Jason Reitman Toronto world premiere, Men, Women and Children, starring Jennifer Garner and Adam Sandler; the Stephen Hawking biopic The Theory of Everything; and films directed by Jon Stewart and Chris Rock. Toronto made some changes this year, motivated by the increasing competition for world premieres from rival fall festivals. Since films like Foxcatcher and David Cronenberg's Maps to the Stars debuted in Cannes, they won't be slotted during the fest's first four days, which are being reserved strictly for world premieres. In recent years, the Telluride, Venice, and New York festivals had poached some big titles from Toronto, and TIFF is now making an effort to reward films that hold their premieres for the trip north. The Toronto Film Festival runs Sept. 4-14."

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TAGS: bechdel test, david ehrlich, george lucas, israel, kevin b. lee, mallory andrew, palestine, radiohead, sound on sight, star wars, the dissolve, toronto international film festival


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






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