It rings false — Beach Rats is a catalog of desires, a kind of aesthetic carnival of lazy afternoons near the water, glistening skin, boardwalk trysts, neon clubs (which reminded me of Hittman’s excellent 2011 short Forever’s Gonna Start Tonight), desperate fumblings between bodies in secluded spaces, fireworks — but there’s an element of truth to it.More
Liz and Rick
I remember talking to someone online about Baumbach’s Kicking and Screaming, and being unsurprised that they didn’t like it. Like most of Baumbach’s movies, the protagonists are selfish and self-centered, the plot is aimless, and the women often feel like miraculous creatures for their quirky men to earn with small tokens of maturity.More
In some ways, Jules Dassin’s Night and the City (1950) is an unlikely noir, which (along with an icy reception at the time from critics) might help explain why it’s not the first example of the genre that springs to mind — no femme fatale, no particular mystery, no play-by-play heist gone wrong, a curious fixation on wrestling, of all things.More
There is a recurring image in The Water Protectors of Wakpa Waste — the new documentary about anti-pipeline and extractive energy struggles on the Cheyenne River Sioux Reservation in South Dakota, and the people waging those struggles — that sticks in the mind: small icicles clinging to concertina wire.More
Since its founding in 1984, the aptly-named Oddball Films has constituted one of the stranger spaces in the cinema world. An archive as interested in orphan home video, Italian psychedelic cartoons from the 60s, and instructional bumpers about hygiene intended for American classrooms as any neorealist classic or lost masterpiece, it was the brainchild of Stephen Parr, who passed away on October 24th.More
Blade Runner — 1982’s Ridley Scott-directed, Hampton Fancher-penned sci-fi classic — wasn’t immediately received as the resolutely grimy masterpiece of a Philip K. Dick adaptation that fans now cherish.
The New York Times went with “muddled yet mesmerizing,” complaining that Scott “expect(s) overdecoration to carry a film that has neither strong characters nor a strong story,” for instance, and Roger Ebert, in an otherwise positive review, concluded “[T]he movie has the same trouble as the replicants: Instead of flesh and blood, its dreams are of mechanical men.” Reports at the time detailed a rocky road to release, but its genre esteem has skyrocketed since then, beyond even the usual “cult classic” moniker.More