1. “David Fincher Interview.” Ahead of his highly anticipated adaptation of Gillian Flynn’s psychological best-seller, Gone Girl, LWLies is granted an audience with director David Fincher.
“I can’t figure out why other people like it. I know why I like it. I know the things that were interesting that kept coming up in conversations. And then also, to work on a script with the person who wrote the novel, that can be a gift. There can also be a lot of frustration. Or certainly it can be perceived that way. Will this person be able to see the forest for the trees? Or will they be so wed to how difficult it was to make this storyline work that they’re not willing to jettison certain elements when it doesn’t? I know that’s a commonly-held philosophy about novelists. But with Gillian, it couldn’t be further from the truth. She has—and David Koepp has it too—that love of where the audience is in the narrative. She was very good at taking things that were 13 chapters into the book and saying, well that could be in the introduction. She picked out the traits that needed to be dramatised, but didn’t necessarily put them in the same chronological order.”
2. “David Lynch Thinks No One Will Ever Agree on What Eraserhead Is About.” Bilge Ebiri speaks with the master filmmaker about his debut feature, now on Blu-ray from the Criterion Collection.
“No. The midnight movie circuit was what saved or brought a lot of films to the public. You know, the word Eraserhead was on a marquee of many, many theaters for years. Whether people saw the film or not, they’d see the name, and it just went into their collective consciousness. It was the most beautiful thing for independent cinema and art-house cinema, this idea of running films at midnight. It was really important for Eraserhead. Ben Barenholtz, they call him ’the grandfather of the midnight film’—if it wasn’t for Ben, I don’t think Eraserhead would have been discovered at all.”
3. “Walking in the Footsteps of The Texas Chain Saw Massacre.” Tobe Hooper’s classic is 40 years young, and to celebrate, ScreenCrush’s Jacob Hall visited some of the shooting locations.
“If you look at it from the right angle, it could be mistaken for the middle of nowhere. The flat Texas countryside stretches for miles in every direction. The horizon is populated with farm houses and barns. Fields of crops line the road. The heat is so strong, the air outside of my car ripples and I praise a higher power for air conditioning. This is Texas as ’outsiders’ see it: tamed by man, but free of proper civilization. Never mind that the thoroughly modern city of Bastrop is ten minutes in the rear view mirror. Forget that Austin, the geek/hippy/tech Mecca and state capitol, is only 30 minutes down the highway. It’s quiet out here. Quiet enough to tend your land and your cattle in peace. Quiet enough to ignore ’progress,’ a word that demands those quotation marks in these parts. Hell, it’s quiet enough for you to get away with murdering a handful of unsuspecting young people with a chainsaw and to prepare their flesh at your family’s roadside convenience store. Yes, this is Texas. Home of cattle and cowboys. Land of great barbecue and amazing music. The place where a tribe of cannibals can get along in relative peace and comfort, occasionally rearing their flesh-mask covered heads to prey on teenagers who ran out of gas at the wrong time and in the wrong place. I’m deep in The Texas Chain Saw Massacre country. 40 years ago, director Tobe Hooper, a skeleton crew and a ragtag cast of unknown actors made horror history in these parts. Cinema, and the great state of Texas, were never the same.”
4. “Wim Wenders on Claire Denis.” Prior to making her own films, Denis worked as Wim Wenders’ assistant on films like Paris, Texas and Wings of Desire, and below, in the foreword to the book The Films of Claire Denis: Intimacy at the Border, Wenders takes an affectionate look at how his collaboration with Klärchen (as she was known then) begun.
“She showed up one morning at the hotel in downtown Houston.
We walked towards each other, a bit awkwardly.
Were we going to speak French together
or would English be the language of choice here in Texas?
My future assistant was smaller than I had anticipated.
’Frail’ would be the right word.
She stared at me
with curious, wide-awake eyes under short blond hair.
Was she up for this tough job?
Maybe my eyes showed what I thought.
She smiled shyly…”
5. “The Availability Gap: What We Lose When Netflix Wins.” Streaming services were supposed to democratize media. But they’re making some movies harder, and costlier, to see than ever.
“The shift to streaming technologies is often viewed in terms of democratization: No longer do art house-deprived viewers have to wait months to see the movie their social-media friends in New York are raving about. But it’s hard to think of anything less democratic than a state of affairs where the price for a single viewing of Sweet Sweetback, or any of the untold numbers of movies waiting to strike a digital deal, has effectively jumped above $20. It’s not just Van Peebles, either: Brooks found 14—fourteen—Woody Allen movies effectively unavailable through Netflix, including Bananas, Deconstructing Harry and Bullets Over Broadway. Want to see how Bullets stacks up against the recent musical version? Hope you’re ready to pay $12 and add it to your permanent collection.”
Video of the Day: The trailer for The Hunger Games: Mockingjay:
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