Filmmakers can’t leave ballet pictures well enough alone. Allegorized beyond their capacity to withstand the effort, reduced to a soap opera in which ambition and femininity make for an unholy mishmash, they rarely settle down long enough for readers to enjoy the pure movement they’re supposed to record. Blame Michael Powell and Emeric Pressburger’s TheContinue reading “Ballet drama ‘Birds of Paradise’ dances in place”
I’ll say what goes often unsaid: the polymath born Stevland Hardaway Judkins is a beautiful man, quite remarkable in his youth.
Since Inauguration Day I’ve decided to keep HTV coverage of the former president to a minimum. First, I had to protect my cerebral cortex.
Chad Batka/The New York Times)[/caption] One trio’s omission looks obvious — Destiny’s Child? Beyonce Knowles made it clear she’s the Obergruppenführer of this outfit, insouciant about replacing members such that Kelly Rowland and LaTavia Roberson become interchangeable.
A master of the psychology of landscape, Michaelangelo Antonioni changed the way we think about how films can look and how films can render realism.
The third vaccine — my Pfizer booster — accomplished what its two predecessors could not: it knocked me flat. First, I couldn’t find a way to sleep on my left side because I had, foolishly, requested the jab in that arm. Then around midnight I awoke shivering enough for me to pull the comforter overContinue reading “‘The hospitals are afraid of unvaccinated staff getting infected’”
“Oh, radiant happiness, it was all so light and easy/Till I started analyzing/And I brought on my old ways,” Joni Mitchell sighed in the last song on one of her lithest albums, a song sequence chronicling a nomad’s adventures drifting from town to town, state to state, Jaco Pastorius’ bass lines standing athwart Mitchell’s guitarContinue reading “Looking for the refuge of the road: The best songs about travel”
One day shy of six months, I rolled up my sleeve and had a third chip inserted into my arm, a fresh chip ready to track my internet browsing on liberal-leftist sites, my driving to the regional library, and my lecturing through a surgical mask to film students about match dissolves and typage.
Capping a period of experiments as Martin Scorsese’s house screenwriter and as director of several films with one foot in the work of influences Carl Dreyer and Robert Bresson and another in the visual lexicon of fashion, Paul Schrader turned to the work of a Japanese writer whose polymathic sensibilities included a taste for sadomasochisticContinue reading “Screenings #52”
“Some things hurt more much more than cars and girls,” Paddy McAloon sang on Prefab Sprouts’ “Cars and Girls,” to which I’d add “clothes.” Pop culture depends on looking good. Or feeling bad about looking good. Or about looking bad. PJ Harvey questioned the implications of dresses; Nancy Sinatra used her boots as a feministContinue reading “The best songs about clothing”
Without The Empire Strikes Back, the Star Wars series would be pallid mythology, left to the devices of George Lucas (nevertheless, it often remains so). Leigh Brackett and Lawrence Kasdan’s script added wit and sophistication to the banter, deepened the Han-Leia relationship, and established Darth Vader as a conflicted but formidable foe. More importantly, IrvinContinue reading “The best film sequels”
Give Edie Brickell this: she introduced me to envelope filters, ontology, and Bob Dylan.