Roger Ebert Home

Bill Pullman


The Equalizer 2 (2018)
LBJ (2017)
Walking Out (2017)
American Ultra (2015)
Cymbeline (2015)
The Equalizer (2014)
Nobel Son (2008)
Bottle Shock (2008)
You Kill Me (2007)
Dear Wendy (2005)
The Grudge (2004)
Rick (2004)
Igby Goes Down (2002)
Lucky Numbers (2000)
Lake Placid (1999)
Zero Effect (1998)
Lost Highway (1997)
Casper (1995)
The Favor (1994)
Sommersby (1993)
Newsies (1992)
Liebestraum (1991)
Bright Angel (1991)
Spaceballs (1987)

Blog Posts


Thumbnails 6/29/2013

A dinosaur that started on four legs and then graduated to two, just like humans; a Chinese poet writes about his experience of torture in prison; why all journalism is "advocacy journalism"; why it matters that 50 Shades of Grey will have a female director; a brief history of the president as action hero; the 50 essential lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender movies; artist creates portraits of people she's never met via DNA samples from cigarette butts.

Ebert Club

#166 May 8, 2013

Marie writes: the great Ray Harryhausen, the monster innovator and Visual Effects legend, passed away Tuesday May 7, 2013 in London at the age of 92. As accolades come pouring in from fans young and old, and obituaries honor his achievements, I thought club members would enjoy remembering what Harry did best.

Ebert Club

#135 September 26, 2012

Marie writes: It's no secret that most Corporations are evil - or at the very least, suck big time. And while I have no actual proof, I'm fairly certain there is a special level of Dante's Hell reserved just for them. (Map of Dante's Hell.)That being the case, when my younger brother Paul wrote me about a cool project sponsored by Volkswagen, I was understandably wary and ready to denounce it sight-unseen as self-serving Corporate shyte. As luck would have it however, I was blessed at birth with curiosity and which got the better of me and why I took a look. For what I found was nothing less than extraordinary....

Ebert Club

#114 May 9, 2012

Marie writes: Intrepid club member Sandy Kahn discovered the following Danish designers "Monstrum" who make extraordinary playgrounds for children. I think they're the stuff of dreams, whatever your age. Indeed; behold the Rahbek kindergarten in Frederiksberg, Denmark, and Monstrum's first playground...

The Rocket and The Princess Tower! "Just like a set design, a playground must have an inspiring front that attracts children, and a functional backside with climbing, sliding and relaxing options. The idea of the playground is to combine a girl's mind with a boy's approach into one big common playground. The princess tower consists of three floors, and the rocket has two floors. From the top floor of the Rocket, you can slide down the 6 m long double slide together with an astronaut friend." (click to enlarge.)

Far Flungers

To travel and live without reasons

When I observed the lifestyle of Ryan Bingham in Jason Reitman's wonderful movie "Up in the Air" early in this year, Lawrence Kasdan's 1988 movie "The Accidental Tourist" came to my mind. Like Ryan, Macon Leary (William Hurt) knows a lot about traveling around by plane. He can tell you how to pack your bag as small as possible.

May contain spoilers


Take Mulholland Dr. to the Lost Highway, Inland Empire exit...

"I'm there right now": The lost highway goes down Mulholland Drive and through the Inland Empire...

It is possible that many people would not describe David Lynch's movies as "straightforward," but they're really pretty simple to grasp if you think of them as meditations on states of consciousness rather than chronological narratives (or, uh, "straight stories"). They still have beginnings, middles and endings and they take you from one place (or way of seeing) to another. "Inland Empire," for example, is about a Hollywood actress (who may or may not be unfaithful to her husband -- but is that the actress or the Southern gal she's playing or someone else?), a suburban wife married to a former animal handler in a Polish carny, a mistress, a Polish whore... And all of them appear to be aspects of the same woman, played by Laura Dern. Or, perhaps, all these women are aspects of one another: the actress feels like a whore, the wife is also a mistress, the whore is also an actress, the actress's character is having an adulterous affair, and so on and so on.

I think "Lost Highway," "Mulholland Drive" and "Inland Empire" are ("Twin Peaks" aside -- that's in a realm of its own) Lynch's strongest work, and they also feel like extensions of one another. The saxophonist played by Bill Pullman and the mechanic played by Balthazar Getty, the actresses played by Naomi Watts and Laura Harring, the actress played by Laura Dern -- they all seem like variations on similar ideas. ("Mulholland Dr." is basically "Lost Highway" in reverse.)

In Lynch's book "Catching the Big Fish: Meditation, Consciousness, and Creativity" he describes "Lost Highway," for example, in a way that seems perfectly clear when you watch it: At the time Barry Gifford and I were writing the script for "Lost Highway," I was sort of obsessed with the O.J. Simpson trial. Barry and I never talked about it this way, but I think the film is somehow related to that.

What struck me about O.J. Simpson was that he was able to smile and laugh. He was able to go golfing with seemingly very few problems about the whole thing. I wondered how, if a person did these deeds, he could go on living. And we found this great psychology term -- "psychogenic fugue" -- describing an event where the mind tricks itself to escape some horror. So, in a way, "Lost Highway" is about that. And the fact that nothing can stay hidden forever. (The fact that Robert Blake, who appeared as the chilling Mystery Man in that film, was latter tried for the murder of his wife, adds another sinister dimension to the film, or the atmosphere surrounding it.) Dave McCoy, Editor of MSN Movies, has summarized the movie this way: "It's about a guy who kills his wife and is so horrified by what he's done that the only way he can deal with it is to become another person... and a character in a film noir, no less, where women are evil and violence can be easily rationalized."

Hey, what more do ya need? A map? Just remember: DON'T YOU EVER F---IN' TAILGATE!!! I'm sorry about that, Pete, but tailgating is one thing I cannot tolerate....