Did You See This?

Jonathan Demme's Wild Comedy, Ry Cooder in Cuba, Movie Classicism

On Film / Short Takes — Apr 21, 2017
  • With its startling mix of tones and genres, Jonathan Demme’s 1986 Something Wild captures the destabilizing experience of falling in love. Kim Morgan looks back on this “moody, transgressive, genre-bending, weirdly romantic (and unromantic)” comedic thriller in conjunction with a screening at the New Beverly in Los Angeles.
  • In his Academy of the Underrated column at the Talkhouse, filmmaker Bruce LaBruce calls Bob Rafelson’s Jack Nicholson vehicle The King of Marvin Gardens “the kind of personal, low-key character study that really doesn’t get made in Hollywood anymore.”
  • On the occasion of our release of Wim Wenders’ Buena Vista Social Club this week, Esquire has republished a profile of roots-music trailblazer Ry Cooder and his experience recording the film’s soundtrack album in Cuba.
  • For more on Wenders, read Bilge Ebiri on the “marvelous complexity and irreverent humor” of the director’s Road Trilogy, which plays at Brooklyn’s BAMcinématek this weekend.
  • “It wasn’t just his beauty,” writes Sheila O’Malley on James Dean in his breakthrough role in Elia Kazan’s East of Eden. “It was the fact that his twisted-up body (which drove—and drives—his critics nuts), and his awkward vulnerability, so enormous he runs away from it at the same moment it bombards him, expressed exactly what it felt like to be an intense teen in a world that didn’t understand.”
  • Other Hollywood stars of Dean’s era—Elizabeth Taylor, Audrey Hepburn, Marilyn Monroe—give good face in this BuzzFeed roundup of portraits by celebrated photographer Douglas Kirkland.
  • What do we mean when we call movies “classical”? The latest Film Comment podcast brings critics Kent Jones, Michael Koresky, and Violet Lucca together to examine this concept through the lens of James Gray’s latest film, The Lost City of Z.
  • For Filmmaker, Chris Boeckmann reflects on some of the challenges and rewards that come with being a film programmer in the college town Columbia, Missouri.
  • A pioneering chronicler of marine life, Jean Painlevé developed an “eye for the odd and uncanny” through his involvement with Paris’s early-twentieth-century avant-garde scene, writes Allison Meier at Hyperallergic.
  • The Tribeca Film Festival is now in full swing. In celebration, Fandor has compiled a selection of New York–themed video essays, including early urban documentaries and Chantal Akerman’s News from Home.
  • A key collaborator on Stanley Kubrick’s A Clockwork Orange, Barry Lyndon, and The Shining, John Alcott was a cinematographer of both vision and technical mastery. Wolfcrow dissects his sublime achievements in this new video essay: