Rarely has a remake felt more contractually obligated than the 2015 version of Poltergeist.
Patrick Z. McGavin writes about "Shoah," which was just issued on Blu-ray by Criterion in a thorough package that makes the film's unique storytelling more transparent to the layperson. "Lanzmann has said the form and construction is the key to understanding his film," McGavin writes, "and with this new version, that process has never been more intuitive."
How not to react to a deaf person; the fate of libraries in an era of budget cuts and e-books; the best paragraph of The Great Gatsby; un-Google-able band names, and why some bands choose them; interview with Hannibal composer Brian Reitzell; the tyranny of the "money shot" in trailers, and now movies;
Nat Faxon and Jim Rash, who won a screenwriting Oscar for "The Descendants" talk about "The Way, Way Back," which they wrote, produced, directed, and appear in as actors. They talk about casting Steve Carell as a bad guy, what acting has taught them about directing, using Spotify to pick the songs for the movie, and the very important task they forgot on the first day.
The use of drones and other machines for war or for surveillance has turned up as a subject in a surprisingly large number of summer blockbusters, including "Iron Man 3," "Star Trek Into Darkness," "Man Of Steel," and now "Pacific Rim."
Susan Wloszczyna wonders if women at the helm might be just the thing to revitalize the foundering, repetitive comic-book movie genre.
I won't make any grand claims for the "Despicable Me" films as art, but I adore them anyway. There's something appealingly relaxed and confident about them. They don't quite look, move or feel like any other blockbuster animated cartoons, yet they never seem to be trying too hard. And they're the best portrait of single parenthood I've seen outside of "Louie."
The New York Times' David Carr admits that Glenn Greenwald is a journalist; Criterion Collection appreciates Alex Cox's Repo Man; poets go to the movies; James Franco's never-ending navel-gaze; David Edelstein dismantles The Way, Way Back; Kerry Washington on the cover of Vanity Fair; Dennis Hopper documentary.
Frank Serpico's new crusade; the summer that blockbuster violence got out-of-control; a defense of Paula Deen; Futurama signs off; what not to say to a feminist female humorist; Gaby Giffords shoots again.
Steve Coogan has a talent for self-laceration. His best roles are all about him, or rather a reflection of himself that he finds funny, in a pathetic sort of way.
Why whales are beaching themselves; The Lone Ranger was black; Matt Singer out, Sam Adams in at CriticWire; when is Jia Zhangke going to tell us what he really thinks?; Sweet November, from 1968.