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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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Indie crisis: I just want my head to explode

This letter was received by director Tom DiCillo after publication of our article about the crisis in indie film making, and is reproduced by permission of the author.

Dear Tom:

Thank you! Thank you for instigating the piece and the response from Roger Ebert regarding what happened to your film "Delirious."

It was forwarded by my director Paul Fox because we too are still in bit of a daze because we've just gone through the same thing with our feature "Everything's Gone Green," the first film written by novelist Douglas Coupland.

Launched by a great response at SXSW Film Festival, good reviews from major critics, opened in NYC and LA but it continued to dissipate from there.

This was the first line of the review from the Village Voice: "With, say, a Fox Searchlight behind it, director Paul Fox's charming adaptation of Doug (Generation X) Coupland's sole screenplay might have been a contender, but as it stands, this winsome tale of a Vancouver slacker stumbling into success, love, and something approaching maturity will likely slip away." Ouch.

Ouch because after the whole thing and as much as I love the film that we made, I'm now left with the feeling of "was it all worth it?"

Anyway, thank you again because your email to Roger Ebert resulted in the fact that there maybe, unfortunately, others that would understand why the fuck I just want my head to explode when I try to rethink over and over again about how maybe things could have been done differently when at the same time I wouldn't change one-frame of the film. Take care.

- Chris Nanos, Radke Films, Toronto

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