1. “Paradise Lost and Found.” Interview’s Colleen Kelsey chats with Mia Hansen-Løve.
“I’m obsessed with Patrick Modiano’s last book. Modiano is a very famous, great French writer that for some reason I feel very connected to. He’s always writing about memory. He used to write about memory and then it became about difficulty, the memory that’s disappearing. The more it goes, the more it seems to be about recovering memories, the loss of memories, the fog. His books become more and more abstract. In the one I just read, I think in the front of the book, there is a quote from Stendhal saying, ’There is no reality, there is just memory of reality.’ I have this obsession with the relationship to reality. What is real? What is not real? Reality doesn’t exist. It’s just the way we reconstruct it and the dialogue between the past and the present; how to be present in the world, how to connect with yourself and the past. I guess that’s why all my films are connected [and] have to do with passing of time. It’s always about constructing a past or a life, so that at some point in the film you have the present of the film and you have the memory. The film has its own memory.”
2. “BAM Fam.” For Artforum, Melissa Anderson on the seventh annual BAMcinemaFest.
“The friendship between Catherine (Elisabeth Moss) and Virginia (Katherine Waterston) is beset by an even more fraught, if quieter, push-pull dynamic in Alex Ross Perry’s Queen of Earth, the festival’s centerpiece. A besotted yet spiky homage to New Hollywood exemplars of female unraveling, like Robert Altman’s Images (1972) and Woody Allen’s Interiors (1979), Perry’s movie opens with a tight close-up of Moss’s teary, mascara-smeared face as her character demands of her off-screen, soon-to-be-ex-boyfriend, ’Why are you doing this to me?’ Though never articulated again, the query becomes the film’s theme: Nearly all conversations between Catherine and Virginia are poisoned by simmering hurts and resentments. That these increasingly dark, aggrieved exchanges take place amid the effulgent glory of the Hudson Valley, where Catherine retreats after her breakup—and her father’s death—to spend a few weeks in the airy country home owned by Virginia’s parents (and where the two engaged in more passive-aggressive banter the summer prior, a time smoothly rendered in flashback), only heightens the dread of this domestic horror story.”
3. “The Greatest Pie Fight in Cinematic History Has Been Found.” A Laurel and Hardy reel thought lost for decades is discovered.
“Over the weekend, it was quietly announced at the Library of Congress’ festival of ’unidentified, underidentified, or misidentified films’ that one of the most deeply mourned lost treasures in film history has reappeared. As reported by Pamela Hutchinson at Silent London, silent film historian Jon Mirsalis unexpectedly rediscovered the second reel of Laurel and Hardy’s 1927 film The Battle of the Century, lost for 60 years. The Battle of the Century is not only a crucial film in the careers of Laurel and Hardy, but it contains the biggest, best, funniest execution of the pie-in-the-face gag in cinematic history. For fans of early film comedy, this discovery is roughly the equivalent of Moby Dick swimming ashore carrying the Holy Grail.”
4. “Don’t Root for the Game of Thrones White Walkers Just Yet.” Despite the grim realities of Westeros, there’s still enough goodness to have hope for humanity.
“Perhaps Game of Thrones is fitting fantasy for a cynical time in which civic discourse is widely assumed to be a façade for power-grabbing and the notion of transcendent or enduring value is in doubt. But is a world of almost relentless brutality and grotesque sadism more realistic than fairy-tales of chivalrous knights and fair ladies? I think the world of Ice and Fire has enough goodness to root for humanity. This isn’t a story in which all the good people inevitably turn out to have some inner rot, or turn bad given the right incentive. True, a distressing number of them are now checkmarks in the body count. But we still have Sam Tarly, a character with a hunger for learning, and his brave and loyal companion Gilly (and her baby). There are still the honorable Brienne and Ser Davos; there are Daenerys, Tyrion and friends; there are Sansa and even Theon. Perhaps in the upcoming books and seasons, we will see more of the human spirit prevailing.”
5. “Don’t Believe the Hype.” Brandon Harris on Dope.
“See, Dope thinks it’s a satire, but it doesn’t know of what. The insidious way our nation’s image of gun violence and black youths are all bound up together? The ways in which we prescribe identities to said youths, that represent but a sliver of their diversity and complexity? After watching an audience full of white film-fest goers in Seattle laugh at breezily narrated images of teenagers being gunned down or colored youths debating when white folks can call us niggas, I’m pretty sure you found a decidedly awkward and mostly ineffective way of doing it, Rick Famuyiwa. At least unfunny to the type of black person who found Django Unchained to be the empty catharsis of our national cinema’s answer to Rachel Dolezal.”
Video of the Day: Jon Stewart Rejoices at Donald Trump Presidential Campaign:
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