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Links for the Day: Abel Ferrara Interview, The Strange Unravelling of Cinderella, Alejandro Jodorowsky and the Uses of Fiction, Phil Coldiron on Entertainment, & More

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Links for the Day: Abel Ferrara Interview, The Strange Unravelling of Cinderella, Alejandro Jodorowsky and the Uses of Fiction, Phil Coldiron on Entertainment, & More

1. “It’s Criminal and My Name Is On It.” Abel Ferrara on his Strauss-Kahn-inspired Welcome to New York, his battle with distributors, and Pasolini.

“Women know what’s going on. We’re grown-ups. We’re big boys. That’s why this idea of an R-rating is a joke. I’ve never made an R-rated film. I wouldn’t even accept the term ’R-rating.’ A long time ago when I used to work with these guys [speaking of film studio execs in general] and make the cuts… I was there when the MPAA was invented, I was there when the whole thing came about. It came to a moment in my life where I realized I was thinking in those terms, and then I stopped. Because I cannot do what I do, worrying about that. I wouldn’t even accept the concept of an R-rated film—and I live in and work in Europe, so that doesn’t exist [here]. These people, IFC, put out unrated films. That’s their fucking thing. And Wild Bunch as a European-fucking distributor…c’mon man. Blue is the Warmest Color, Nymphomaniac, all these films, ya dig? And they [IFC and Wild Bunch] know who I am. We’ve made five films together. They [IFC and Wild Bunch] grew up watching my films. They know I don’t make R-rated films. And this subject matter, this story, the way I shot it, you cannot. I wouldn’t have made it, I wouldn’t have done it. They’re tyrants. They act with impunity. It’s not going to fly with me, or people who have any sense of the truth.”

2. “Of Mice and Women.” Rob Walker on the stage unraveling of Cinderella.

“So this girl remained trapped in the attic for days, or was suspiciously locked up without explanation earlier that afternoon, and yet cares so little for her plight that she can’t even bother to open a window and look outside? Oh yes, there’s a window. A window that the mice open themselves—from the INSIDE—while Cinderella twirls around and sings ’Hey dilly lilly!’ like Ophelia bouncing off the walls of the rubber room. I can’t think of a more insidious moral for little girls. Or little boys. Or children of any age. When held against your will by abusive authority figures, don’t bother making yourself aware of your surroundings. Don’t look for a way out. Don’t call for help out an open window. Just retreat into a fantasy world and think of better times. Forget the fact that this takes Cinderella precariously close to finishing her tale like Harry Tuttle in Terry Gilliam’s Brazil. It’s okay, kids! They’ll never break your love of dancing!”

3. “The Art of Disillusionment: Alejandro Jodorowsky and the Uses of Fiction.” For the Los Angeles Review of Books, Askold Melnyczuk on Where the Bird Sings Best.

“The momentum holds for the length of the novel as a cavalcade of outsized characters careen across the page in a frenzy that seems for once an adequate and just representation of the living fury that is history. Among the myriad challenges facing all refugees, exiles, and immigrants is how to keep faith with their former selves, their ancestors, and their native realm amid changing circumstances and often (usually) hostile environments. The question is simultaneously universal and specific. It’s the riddle the Sphinx posed to Oedipus and is, at its core, an interrogation of identity. Who am I when the world around me keeps changing—and I along with it? How can a Jew maintain her identity in the face of so much hostility? Why should she? Can we lose, or turn, from our inherited beliefs without becoming traitors to our people and ourselves? These are profound questions, and Jodorowsky’s daring lies in his risking answers.”

4. “The Funniest Joke in the World.” For Cinema Scope, Phil Coldiron on Rick Alverson’s Entertainment

“We’ve grown comfortable enough with the precariousness of our lives that the sudden disappearance of what we’ve known is no longer a catalyst to existential crisis, but a simple fact to be dealt with as calmly as any other inconvenience. (There is, in these post-auratic days, nothing that can’t be replaced.) Though he finds a number of similarly smart, small ways to push back against the film’s exhausted style, Alverson is nonetheless content to stick small bodies at the centre of his expansive ’Scope frames, testing the ability of the space of the screen to express the pat distance between a wounded private life and a monstrous public one. This overly literal linking of character and visual style offers little in the way of dramatic, emotional, or psychological nourishment: the reintroduction of psychological realism seems unlikely to breathe life back into any exhausted modernist form. Alverson’s commitment to these failures allows the film to slowly accrue a seriousness that finally breaks through to a new expressive space as it sprawls into its nervy final third.”

5. “Wim Wenders, Family Therapist.” For The L Magazine, Elise Nakhnikian interviews Wenders and Juliano Ribeiro Salgado about The Salt of the Earth.

“Talking heads, yes. It wasn’t good enough. And it wasn’t good enough not just because I was in the shot, but because with the camera in the shot, Sebastião every now and then got self-conscious. He tells a story and he’s looking at the photos and he’s really getting into the memory, and then he looks up and he looks at me and all of a sudden it becomes an act. I thought, ’What can we do to immerse [him] once more in that time? His journeys are so amazing because he does immerse so much. How can we get back to that point?’ And I eventually came up with the idea of the darkroom and the teleprompter and him just alone, facing his photographs, no camera, no Wim Wenders, no sound engineers. He was only looking at his photographs, talking about what he saw in front of him, and while he was doing so he was looking into the camera.”

Video of the Day: A short film, Guerrero: The Monster in the Mountains, about 43 students from the Ayotzinapa Normal School who went missing on September 26, 2014:

Links for the Day: A collection of links to items that we hope will spark discussion. We encourage our readers to submit candidates for consideration to ed@slantmagazine.com and to converse in the comments section.

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Watch: The Long-Awaited Deadwood Movie Gets Teaser Trailer and Premiere Date

Welcome to fucking Deadwood!

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Deadwood
Photo: HBO

At long last, we’re finally going to see more of Deadwood. Very soon after the HBO series’s cancellation in 2006, creator David Milch announced that he agreed to produce a pair of two-hour films to tie up the loose ends left after the third season. It’s been a long road since, and after many false starts over the years, production on one standalone film started in fall 2018. And today we have a glorious teaser for the film, which releases on HBO on May 31. Below is the official description of the film:

The Deadwood film follows the indelible characters of the series, who are reunited after ten years to celebrate South Dakota’s statehood. Former rivalries are reignited, alliances are tested and old wounds are reopened, as all are left to navigate the inevitable changes that modernity and time have wrought.

And below is the teaser trailer:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tAcftIUE6MQ

Deadwood: The Movie airs on HBO on May 31.

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Watch: Quentin Tarantino’s Once Upon a Time in Hollywood Gets Teaser Trailer

When it rains, it pours.

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Once Upon a Time in Hollywood
Photo: Columbia Pictures

When it rains, it pours. Four days after Quentin Tarantino once more laid into John Ford in a piece written for his Beverly Cinema website that saw the filmmaker referring to Ford’s She Wore a Yellow Ribbon as Tie a Yellow Ribbon, and two days after Columbia Pictures released poster art for QT’s ninth feature that wasn’t exactly of the highest order, the studio has released a teaser for Once Upon a Time in Hollywood. The film was announced early last year, with Tarantino describing it as “a story that takes place in Los Angeles in 1969, at the height of hippy Hollywood.”

Set on the eve of the Manson family murders, Once Upon a Time in Hollywood tells the story of TV actor Rick Dalton (Leonardo DiCaprio) and his stunt double, Cliff Booth (Brad Pitt), as they try to get involved in the film industry. The film also stars Margot Robbie (as Sharon Tate), Al Pacino, the late Luke Perry, Damian Lewis, Dakota Fanning, Emile Hirsch, Timothy Olyphant, Kurt Russell, and Bruce Dern in a part originally intended for the late Burt Reynolds.

See the teaser below:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Scf8nIJCvs4

Columbia Pictures will release Once Upon a Time in Hollywood on July 26.

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Watch the Stranger Things 3 Trailer, and to the Tune of Mötley Crüe and the Who

A wise woman once said that there’s no such thing as a coincidence.

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Stranger Things 3
Photo: Netflix

A wise woman once said that there’s no such thing as a coincidence. On Friday, Jeff Tremaine’s The Dirt, a biopic about Mötley Crüe’s rise to fame, drops on Netflix. Today, the streaming service has released the trailer for the third season of Stranger Things. The clip opens with the strains of Mötley Crüe’s “Home Sweet Home,” all the better to underline that the peace and quiet that returned to the fictional rural town of Hawkins, Indiana at the end of the show’s second season is just waiting to be upset again.

Little is known about the plot of the new season, and the trailer keeps things pretty vague, though the Duffer Brothers have suggested that the storyline will take place a year after the events of the last season—duh, we know when “Home Sweet Home” came out—and focus on the main characters’ puberty pangs. That said, according to Reddit sleuths who’ve obsessed over such details as the nuances of the new season’s poster art, it looks like Max and company are going to have to contend with demon rats no doubt released from the Upside Down.

See below for the new season’s trailer:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YEG3bmU_WaI

Stranger Things 3 premieres globally on July 4.

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