The Eyes That Fascinate
Louis Feuillade, born in 1873 in the Camargue, near Montpellier, was no one’s idea of a radical, although he ended up making some of the most radical movies—formally and politically, at least by implication—of the early silent era. He was a royalist Catholic with a military background; an ardent follower and defender of bullfighting, a specialty of his region; a fervent partisan of Karl Wilhelm Naundorff, one of the many people claiming to be the “lost dauphin,” Louis XVII. One of his cousins married a princeling, which made him kin to the House of Bourbon. He wrote poems all his life in the style of an academician of the 1880s. When, in 1898, he went “up” to Paris, like a Balzac character from the provinces, he found work as an accountant for a Catholic publishing house. He wrote for royalist and bullfighting journals until, in 1905, he was hired as a screenwriter by the fledgling cinematic production company Gaumont.
An Asian American Comedy Milestone Riffs on a Kung-Fu Icon
One of the first hit movies made by an Asian American team, They Call Me Bruce confronts everyday racism with irreverent humor emblematic of its era.
The Good Fight: Deepa Dhanraj’s Visions of Solidarity
Over the course of her four-decade career, the pioneering Indian documentary filmmaker has demonstrated the important roles that joy and pleasure play in the process of political change.
The Wet Dreams and Twisted Politics of Erotic Thrillers
Combining elements of soft-core porn and film noir, one of the most popular Hollywood genres of the 1980s and ’90s captured the fraught aspirationalism and sexual mores of the era.
How to Stay, When to Vanish
The author of the novel Fiona and Jane looks back on a relationship that never quite solidified—and a future that never quite arrived—through the prism of Bi Gan’s Long Day’s Journey into Night.