Latest Blog Posts
PARK CITY - Seeing the insane line outside the Eccles Theater today, I couldn't help but wonder how many of those people knew what sort of movie they were getting into when they sat down for Shane Carruth's "Upstream Color" this morning. Based on the conversations I overheard on the bus afterwards, I'd wager the film caught a lot of those people by surprise, and little wonder. Dense, beautiful, hypnotic, and almost willfully opaque, "Upstream Color" is a great movie, but it is not an inviting one. Carruth expects you to do a certain amount of the work for yourself, and for some viewers, there is no more frustrating kind of film than that.
Personally, I see plenty of movies every year where every little detail is spelled out in such an obvious manner that I don't mind when I see someone change it up. Carruth's movie starts strange, gets very dark, then takes a left-turn into one of the most damaged movie romances I can remember before finally lifting off into about a half-hour long finale with no dialogue whatsoever. It is completely different in aesthetics and narrative approach than Carruth's previous film, "Primer," but like that film, it seems to have no real interest in conventional narrative.
Kelly Clarkson traveled from “American Idol” to the American inauguration of President Barack Obama today, singing a stirring rendition of “My Country, ‘Tis of Thee.”
[More after the jump...]
On this uniquely American day, Beyonce added her own stamp to Barack Obama’s second inauguration as president of the United States.
[More after the jump...]
After Ben Gibbard emphatically declared in October to Spinner that there were no plans to record a second Postal Service record, the duo will reunite to play Coachella, according to Billboard. Additional dates are expected to be announced.
Additionally, Death Cab for Cutie’s Gibbard and his Postal Service partner Jimmy Tamborello have collaborated on a deluxe 10th anniversary package of “Give Up,” the pair’s one and only album. It will come out next month. The original set came out Feb. 19, 2004.
The band launched a new website today. It’s scant on details, to put it mildly, but definitely signals that The Postal Service is back in business. It features the band’s logo against a black background and “2013.”
“Give Up” spawned the hit “Such Great Heights” and sold more than 1 million copies, according to Nielsen SoundScan.
Coachella takes place April 12-14 and April 19-21.
Whatever did this show do before Kenya? Really, the girl is a one woman drama factory, and now that NeNe finds reality TV a bit beneath her, Kim has shuffled off to her own show and Sheree has been unceremoniously dumped, "The Real Housewives" desperately needs an unhinged nutbag like this one. Even with Walt out of the picture, she's still able to stir up plenty of drama all on her on with nothing more than a twirl-worthy dress and a hair flip. Bring it on, Crazypants!
It's common knowledge that January is a cruel month for moviegoers -- assuming you can't just jet off to Sundance for the hell of it, once you've caught up with the late-releasing awards titles, there's little left to see but studio dregs like "Gangster Squad." Ty Burr considers the problem, digging up such noble January exceptions as "Dr. Strangelove" and "The Silence of the Lambs," and making this suggestion: "We should simply declare the first month of the year a new-release-free zone. As a preliminary step toward regaining our trust, studios would have to rerelease their most underrated entertainments from the previous year for a second chance: 2012’s sly meta-shrieker 'The Cabin in the Woods,' say, or the found-footage superhero movie 'Chronicle.'" [New York Times]
PARK CITY - There's something alluringly, disconcertingly off-kilter from the get-go in "Ain't Them Bodies Saints," an imposing third feature from editor-turned-filmmaker David Lowery, and it's not merely the quivery infighting of strings and handclaps in Daniel Hart's striking score: it's that the opening scene of this film is one that has closed so many others. Bob and Ruth, criminal lovers on the lam, are apprehended by the cops on dun-colored Texan terrain after a bloody shootout, A killing spree is ended, justice is served, the couple is parted, pledging devotion. The end. No, the beginning.
PARK CITY - Four days into this year's Sundance fest and I should probably catch up with some thoughts on this and that. I've already written at length about the two films that are the big stand-outs to me thus far, Jeff Nichols' "Mud" and Richard Linklater's "Before Midnight," but I've filled in my schedule with a few things in between.
PARK CITY - Prior to tonight's world premiere of Richard Linklater's "Before Midnight," I went back and revisited the first two installments of what has now become a trilogy. "Before Sunrise" and "Before Sunset" are incredibly easy watches at 90 and 80 minutes apiece. They have an easy flow, owing plenty to the writerly collaboration between the director and his stars, Ethan Hawke and Julie Delpy, which yielded a Best Adapted Screenplay nomination for "Sunset" in 2004.
The story of Jesse and Celine is one of the great romances in all of cinema, and one of Linklater's most significant accomplishments in a unique, rebellious career. The whole journey began on a train in 1995 with a couple arguing in German. That rocky relationship, which somehow seems perfectly stable despite the aggression and the fact that we have no clue what they're arguing about, fires an intriguing starting gun for three films that follow the progression of Jesse and Celine's love and lust and star-crossed passion over 18 years.
PARK CITY - James Pondsolt burst onto the scene a year ago with break-out Sundance hit "Smashed." The film was acquired a few months later by Sony Pictures Classics and was released during awards season, where Mary Elizabeth Winstead's performance turned a few heads but never managed to get any real traction.
He's back this year with one of the most buzzed films of the festival, "The Spectacular Now," starring Shailene Woodley and Miles Teller, with Winstead, Kyle Chandler, Brie Larson and Jennifer Jason Leigh filling out the cast. But he won't be waiting quite as long to find a home this time around, as upstart distributor A24 has announced its acquisition of the title.