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Links for the Day: What Is “Public,” How the Mother of All Sequels Crashed and Burned, In Defense of Comic-Con, Mad Max: Fury Road Trailer, & More

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Links for the Day: What Is “Public,” How the Mother of All Sequels Crashed and Burned, In Defense of Comic-Con, Mad Max: Fury Road Trailer, & More

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?”

2. “In Defense of Comic-Con.” Yes, all the bad things you say about Comic-Con are true. But that doesn’t make it any less wonderful, weird and special.

“Since I’m coming from both sides of the issue (’Look at these fucking nerds!’ ’Look at all of these people just like me!’) I suspect I have a good understanding about the secret origin of much of Comic-Con’s bad rap. It’s a larger cultural insecurity about the unbridled zeal these people display. It makes me uncomfortable as well, and I think some of it extends into the realm of being truly weird (one girl I spoke to in Hall H told me she cried twice during the Avengers: Age of Ultron footage presentation. It wasn’t even that long!), but I do envy these people the purity of their excitement. I don’t envy many other things about them, including their blinkered devotion to shitty properties or the bafflingly uncurious nature many of them seem to have about things that aren’t related to their fandoms, but that’s the bi-polar nature of Comic-Con for you. Do I wish there was more discernment on display? Of course—I always do. But sometimes you just have to bask in the fervor. Sometimes I get so caught up in being serious about this stuff, in thinking deeply about it, in analyzing it thoroughly, that I forget to just sit back and enjoy it. Comic-Con reminds me to enjoy it, if just for a few days.”

3. “How the Mother of All Sequels Crashed and Burned.” Now, when biblical epics have once again become a thriving Hollywood business, this is the story of what happened to the mother of all sequels.

“And the most hopeful man in the room was Benedict Fitzgerald. This meeting was the culmination of his two-year-long attempt to secure financing for his prequel to The Passion of the Christ. Unlike the first film, he was hoping to hold the reins on this one and to reap more of the rewards if it became a success. He didn’t pretend to be an expert at the movie business, but he trusted his longtime lawyer, who had agreed to help Benedict get this film made in return for a 50 percent stake. His lawyer had introduced Fitzgerald to Berlanga, and Berlanga’s friend had introduced them all to Sanchez Garza and Madrigal. Fitzgerald wondered a little bit about the source of the Mexicans’ wealth, but he didn’t wonder too much.”

4. “Temple of Gloom.” Grantland’s Bryan Curtis ponders why the second Indiana Jones movie is so dark.

“For one thing, it’s a much crueler movie. In Raiders, the Nazis are melted by the power of God. In Temple of Doom, Mola Ram falls a dozen stories to his death…and then is eaten by alligators. But even back in 1984, Temple of Doom had been out-ghouled by Halloween and Friday the 13th and other new-wave gorefests. We Indy fans aren’t that delicate. Another theory is that Temple of Doom seems disturbing because of its colonialist brio. For Lucas and Spielberg’s professed love of serials, Temple of Doom owes more to the 1939 movie version of Gunga Din, with its bald Thuggee priest, its swashbuckling heroes, and its depiction of India as a place where evil lurks behind every British sentry. However, I’m not sure this worldview is much more retrograde than the one in Raiders, with its loinclothed Hovitos and scheming Egyptians and an American grave-robber looting two continents. It wasn’t until Last Crusade, which came out in 1989, that Indy starts saying enlightened things like, ’That belongs in a museum!’ And, even then, I’m pretty sure he means a Western one.”

5. “Bombast: I Love Don Weis.” Nick Pinkerton has a crush.

“Weis died in Santa Fe at age 78, presumably comfortably off and possibly even with a tan. It is unclear whether, at the end of his days, he knew anything of his French following. I can find no evidence that any of Weis’s devotees made the trek to Los Angeles with a tape recorder in hand and gave him a chance to cast his Hollywood output in the light of subversive art, as Sirk would. If he did know of his cult reputation, it is not at all clear that he cared, and certainly nothing about his conducting of his career suggests that it was done with critics in mind. Even in Paris, the flame of Weis love would appear to have dimmed—a friend tells me that Bertrand Tavernier, once a Weis partisan, has tempered his appreciation. Sarris was always cautious, writing that ’the Don Weis cultists in Britain and France are not normally frivolous, but just this once it remains to be seen,’ and calling the director’s career ’longer on commission than on conviction.’ If he wasn’t convinced by 1968, there’s little chance that he ever would be.”

Video of the Day: The trailer for George Miller’s Mad Max: Fury Road:

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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