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Links for the Day: The Many Faces of Tatiana Maslany, Martin Scorsese Reflects on Shooting Taxi Driver, Fear the Walking Dead Teaser, & More

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Links for the Day: The Many Faces of Tatiana Maslany, Martin Scorsese Reflects on Shooting Taxi Driver, Fear the Walking Dead Teaser, & More

1. “The Many Faces of Tatiana Maslany.” In portraying a horde of clones on Orphan Black, the actress has created TV’s strangest—and most sophisticated—meditation on femininity.

“By structuring the story around the clones’ differences, Orphan Black seems to suggest that the dull sameness enforced by existing female archetypes needs to die. Early in the first season, there is a serial killer hunting down the clones—it turns out to be Helena, the Ukrainian—who ritualistically dismembers Barbie dolls after dyeing their hair to match that of her next victim. It’s a creepy touch, but one that can also be read as a metacriticism of how women are used on TV: the punishing beauty standards to which they’re held, the imposed uniformity. (Need a new sitcom wife? Grab the prototype and change the hairstyle.) Our low tolerance for difference among female characters means that they will almost always be less interesting, less memorable and less beloved than their male counterparts. In this context, Helena becomes a kind of hero, slaughtering televisual conformity and constituting, in both her savagery and her warmth, a radical expansion of what women on television can be. And each character, including the criminally insane one, gets considerable attention and respect, even when it comes to questions about butter.”

2. ”’Space Is the Place’ Offers Otherworldly Takes on Identity.” For The New York Times, J. Hoberman on BAM’s program devoted to Afrofuturism on film.

“The term doesn’t characterize a genre or a movement so much as an aesthetic, said Naima J. Keith, who was a curator for the exhibition ’The Shadows Took Shape’ last year at the Studio Museum in Harlem. A strategy found in literature, music, art and film, Afrofuturism is an imaginative reworking of African-American history, developing allegories of abduction and enslavement, and employing sci-fi concepts such as genetic transformation, alternate realities and, in some cases, repatriation to a home planet. New genealogies and origin myths proliferate in the series, programmed by the British film journalist Ashley Clark. Afrofuturist protagonists are typically aliens and sometimes cyborgs, as in Kibwe Tavares’s computer-animated ’Robots of Brixton’ (2011). Not just space travel but also time travel is possible, figuring in both Haile Gerima’s ’Sankofa’ (1993) and Ngozi Onwurah’s ’Welcome II the Terrordome’ (1995), where, as in several films, radio functions as the modern equivalent of a tribal drum.”

3. “Why Paige from The Americans is TV’s most progressive Christian.” EW’s Jeff Jensen on how Paige Jennings keeps the faith.

“What I appreciate about Paige’s representation of faith is that it reminds us—or maybe informs us—that conservative Christianity wasn’t the only Christian game in town during the ‘80s, just as it isn’t today. According to the producers of The Americans, they drew from progressive strands of Protestant, mainline churches of the period to portray Paige’s faith. As such, she rebuts and rebukes the decade’s dominant cultural narrative about Christianity. But she also rebuts and rebukes her non-religious parents, who represent a different cultural narrative of the Reagan era: the lapsed ‘60s idealist-turned-disillusioned, materialistic yuppie. She critiques the religious and secular cultures of her time, at the same time.”

4. “Martin Scorsese Remembers Shooting Taxi Driver in New York.” The filmmaker emails Vulture’s Bilge Ebiri from Taipei and reflects on the experience of shooting the film during one particularly grisly summer in New York City.

“It was a rough period in the history of New York—as a matter of fact, the famous Daily News headline ’Ford to City: Drop Dead’ came out while we were editing. Although I couldn’t tell the difference. Apparently, the city felt like it was falling apart, there was garbage everywhere, and for someone like Travis, who’s come from the Midwest, the New York of the mid-‘70s would be hell—[that] must have prompted visions of hell in his mind. But one thing I can tell you: We didn’t have to ’dress’ the city to make it look hellish.”

5. “Sadness Squared.” For Reverse Shot, Daniel Witkin on Yasujiro Ozu’s Tokyo Twilight.

“The space of Ozu’s films is defined not only visually but also socially and culturally. The living rooms, offices, and neighborhood bars that make up his personal directorial universe also constitute the recognizable social space of late twentieth-century Japan, a nation balancing tradition and modernity, great economic resurgence and shell-shocked introspection. If we seem unable to decide whether Ozu belongs primarily to his nation or the world, I think it has something to do with the domestic milieu in which his cinema is so firmly rooted, defined biologically as well as culturally, straddling temporalities both natural (the seasons, gently passing) and social (when will she get married?).”

Video of the Day: Fear the Walking Dead gets a teaser:

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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