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Split

It’s exciting to see Shyamalan on such confident footing once more, all these years later.

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Ballad of Narayama

"The Ballad of Narayama" is a Japanese film of great beauty and elegant artifice, telling a story of startling cruelty. What a space it opens…

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Doing the right thing, promotionally

From Alex Brovtsyn, London, UK:

It is a well-documented fact that Spike Lee is a "shameless self-promoter." (I say this without the slightest intention to discredit his work, most of which I admire.) He is merely trying to get attention from the media, with relative success, by criticising a fellow filmmaker. What fascinates me is that, in the end, the issue itself (African Americans who fought in WWII) appears to become unimportant and only the volume of its coverage begins to matter.

Many of us love film but forget to remember what the film industry is like. I mean, in the trailer to his latest opus (I dare not say "joint"), Lee is introduced as the director of "Inside Man." The only reason discerning audiences fail to cringe at such taglines is because we are accustomed to advertising being geared at the youngest common denominator.

Instead of looking down at Lee for his comments, why not instead consider the system where they are deemed a necessary means to promote a motion picture. Lee is smart enough to sacrifice his own image for box office revenue, because, and call me trivial if you must: what's the point of making a masterpiece if no one is going to see it? I mean, how many reading this are yet to discover "Do The Right Thing"?

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