Sycophantic IFC talking head Henry Rollins nearly disappears up German director Werner Herzog's colon in a excruciating attempt to kiss ass.
The original clip in which Herzog was shot at.
Sycophantic IFC talking head Henry Rollins nearly disappears up German director Werner Herzog's colon in a excruciating attempt to kiss ass.
- Four years after the fact, “Brown Bunny,” actress/fellatist Chloë Sevigny is still mildly-traumatized by the press’ mortified reaction to her bj scene in the aforementioned, controversial Vincent Gallo film. However, she doesn’t fully disavow the physical onscreen act itself. “I really believed in [Gallo] as an artist… perhaps if it had come out at a different time people would've reacted to it differently. Making it for me was not difficult, but the reaction from the public has been very difficult for me to handle.” [IMDB]
- Sacha Baron Cohen, aka the anti-Semitic Kazakhstani Borat Sagdiyev, is allegedly going to play flamboyant (gay) cross-dresser Freddie Mercury in an upcoming biopic according to the indie-zealots at Stereogum. This news is about as reliable as their musical endorsements
- The trailer to the new Jennifer Lopez/Enrique Iglesisas salsa biopic “El Cantate” is online. EW likes to call it her “comeback” after Bennifergate, but these selective, short-term memory braniacs shouldn’t forget, “Monster-In-Law” with Jane Fonda. Despite your likely disdain for the film, in the interest of fairness (something we surprisingly adhere to), the film was financially success if not exactly a runaway hit.
- Introducing the “Drom-Com” (dramatic-romantic comedy). You’re welcome.
-The rom-com "License To Wed" trailer, starring alarmingly-adorable, questionably intelligent Mandy Moore, is also online. The trailer utilizes an MC Hammer reference plus the refreshing comedic skills of Robin Williams.
- "Spider Man-3" is apparently not impressing anyone.
- Shirtless, shit-faced Hasselhoff eating cheesburger on floor: Must...look...away...quickly.
- "Indiana Jones 4" is locked and ready to go, yes? Sean Connery's character is in the script, but the curmudegonly Scottsman has apparently not yet agreed to appear in the film. No problem says quicker-fixer-upper CGI-enthusiast George Lucas, "If he doesn't do it, we'll do a quick rewrite." See just how easy movie-making is? [Coming Soon]
- Welcome to the newest strain of indie-genre, "Mumblecore." [Filmakermagazine]
-Whaddaya know? Fred Durst actually won an award at the Tribeca Film Festival.[MTV]
*Updated: As we assumed, Stereogum was wrong. The rumors that Sacha Baron Cohen would play Freddie Mercury are false. [MTV]
Download: Vincent Gallo - "Apple Girl"
Download: Borat Sagdiyev - "In My Country There Is Problem"
Finally the R-rated version of the "Superbad" trailer is back online. Between this and "Knocked Up," producer Judd Apatow is going to have a very good summer. Van Halen's "Panama" works pretty nicely in this thing. This year's "40-Year-Old Virgin"?
Quite the original and creative headline, considering we just bitched about it, huh?
Another ‘60s film recently excavated (we just reviewed "El Topo") from the cellars of cobweb cult obscurity is the Nicolas Roeg, Donald Cammell collaboration, “Performance,” that starred a little guy named Mick Jagger in his second-ever starring role.
In many ways the not-so-distant cousin film to Ingmar Bergman’s “Persona,” “Performance” examined similar themes of identity and the blurring, assimilation and loss of self only set to the backdrop of gangsters in the U.K.’s swinging ‘60s.
In this psychedelic psychodrama, James Fox plays a gangster on the lam who finds himself taking refuge in the basement of rich, rock-star shut-in (Mick Jagger) and his coterie of gorgeous naked women (Keith Richards’s then-girlfriend Anita Pallenberg and Michèle Breton). They take drugs, play a lot of dress-up and generally lose their marbles.
The back-story to the “Performance” set is unsurprisingly the stuff of legend, full of the sex, drugs and rock n’ roll stories you’d expect ("Stories so good I can't possibly deny them," Jagger has said) . The film itself, with it’s ménage a trois’, casual drug intake, gender-bending drag scenes and jagged Burroughs-esque cut-and-paste editing techniques were extremely shocking and lurid for an 1970’s audience.
“The only performance that makes it, that really makes it, that makes it all the way is the one that achieved madness” - Mick Jagger as Turner
Predictably, insanity ensued onset: Jagger basically stole Pallenberg away from Richards (though he did prowl the set jealously to no avail) , Pallenberg herself tried and failed to hide her growing heroin habit, and straight-laced James Fox was so traumatized by the whole experience he basically stayed away from any acting roles for almost a decade (after shooting wrapped he reportedly became an evangelist).
Though Warhol and other underground filmmakers had depicted sex and drugs onscreen “Performance” was one of the first to do so for a major studio and upon its first screening, Warner Brothers reportedly wanted the negative burnt. The screening was a, "great cinematic disaster," according to the films producers and the studio was horrified by the violence and the fact that their bankable superstar lead (Jagger) didn't enter the film until the mid-way point.
The success of “Easy Rider” has been suggested as the reason WB ever released the film. Even by today’s standards "Performance" is still extremely experimental, disjointed, hallucinatory and yes, as you might imagine is the case with ‘60s freak-out films, sometimes unintentionally funny (though more than often it's just disconcertingly bizarre)
Decades later once Nicolas Roeg's career was reevaluated and re-celebrated– his oeuvre includes the equally serrated and frenetic, “The Man Who Fell To Earth” (starring another rock star, this time David Bowie) and “Bad Timing” (which starred not-so-rock star Art Garfunkle) – the retroactive genius of “Performance's” merits began to rest solely on his shoulders. But Roeg wisely gave the credit to Donald Cammell. While Cammell only made four films in 20 years (and then promptly shot himself in the head) Roeg said that the films identity-crisis issues were “lifelong interests”of the existentialist Cammell (though the jarring intercutting technique would be one that Roeg would go on to adopt for the rest of his career).
A precursor to people like Guy Ritchie and Jonathan Glazer "Performance's" influence hangs heavy over modern fare like, “Gangter No.1” and “Sexy Beast” – a film that cast Fox as straight-laced, albeit homosexual, banker. Dialogue from the film has been sampled by the likes of pill-popping Mancunians Happy Mondays and post-Clash dance underachievers, Big Audio Dynamite.
Though an amusingly dated documentary on the new DVD – clearly made around this '68-70 period – says Jagger had been writing and supervising his first film score, it was arranger/conductor and Spector-cohort Jack Nitzsche who actually wrote it. What I believe the short doc is trying to say is Jagger co-wrote (with Richards) the song, "Memo For Turner," in the film and supervised the production of the song.
Cammell and Roeg gave Nitzsche free reign to experiment and excited by this prospect he purchased one of the first nine Moog synthesizers ever built. On the DVD, his son mentions that his dad brought it home and he was like, “A kid in a toy shop. I was just blown away cause no one had ever heard anything like that in the '60s.”
Other than Nitzsche’s out-there, but not comically bizarre score, the movie contains performances by Buffy Saint Marie, bluesy instrumentals by Ry Cooder and much of it, score or otherwise, co-written by Nitzsche and diminutive, yet hefty singer-songwriter, Randy Newman.
The penultimate scene with Jagger's “Memo For Turner” is essentially one of the first ever music videos. It lives within the film, but disembodied; the narration stops and the song is featured in a jolting, fragmented scene that stands alone from the rest of the picture.
Download: Mick Jagger - "Memo From Turner" (mp3)
Download: Jack Nitzsche "Natural Magic" (mp3)
Download: Jack Nitzsche - "Rolls Royce And Acid" (mp3)
Download: Ry Cooder - "Get Away" (mp3)
Here's a montage of Roeg films that includes parts of "The Man Who Fell To Earth"
The Playlist finally saw the “Scott Walker: 30 Century Man” film last night. A documentary we've been excitedly awaiting for weeks, it did not disappoint and in fact, was illuminating and powerful; especially hearing masterfully haunting pieces from Tilt and The Drift on the big screen. You forget how grand and majestic these nightmarish avante-garde operas can be (and just how radically different they are from his earlier melancholy crooner work).
Lou Reed and Laurie Anderson were seated right behind me and I swear Lou dozed-off several times, snoring raucously. A notorious recluse who turned his back on huge pop success, a remarkable revelation in the film was when Walker briefly hints that alcoholism was partly to blame for his almost double-decade long disappearance and glacial-paced output (a brief comment about, “imbibing,” that he nor the director care to embellish on is all we get).
It’s a strange, tense moment and as director Stephen Kijak - who also directed the extraordinary cinema-obsessive’s portrait, “Cinemania” - noted in the QA afterwards, there was a taciturn understanding about certain off-limit topics. Kijak also told the Voice that another sensitive topic was Walker’s little-known draft-dodging past.
It was fascinating to watch producers Walker worked with in the late ‘60s and early ‘70s marvel about his’s atypical influences, both aesthetical and philosophical: artists like Michel Legrand (composer for film auteurs like Godard, Jacques Demy, Agnès Varda) the writings of Beckett, Sartre and Camus and the theatrical Parisian Jacque Brel (Nine Brel compositions appear on Walker's first three albums).
It turns out Walker was a cinematic obsessive himself, lauding the early influence of Ingmar Bergman and Ken Loach on his pre-conceptions of Europe (and lamenting the fact no one in '60s Europe wanted to discuss anything but American films).
Other intriguing moments in the film include:
- David Bowie (the film’s executive producer) recalling how he came across Walker's music from a former girlfriend in the late ‘60s who had also dated the solitary star.
- Brian Eno marvelling over the Walker Brothers’ last '77 comeback album Nite Flight, and admitting that the record had an influence and kinship on the late ‘70s triptych that he and Bowie recorded (and despairing that music since then hasn't gotten any further)
- Pulp’s Jarvis Cocker discussing Scott Walker’s now-ubiquitous baseball cap and how the brim of said cap was a barometer of how comfortable he felt around you (Walker produced Pulp's 2001 disc, We Love Life and if he didn’t know you his hat was pulled disconcertingly tight to conceal his gaze).
Download: Scott Walker - "The Seventh Seal" (from Scott 4)
Download: Scott Walker - "Farmer In the City" (from Tilt)
Download: The Walker Brothers - "The Electrician" (from Nite Flights)
Download: Scott Walker - "The Time Is Out of Joint" (from the film "
Watch: "Scott Walker: 30 Century Man" trailer
How popular is the Playlist Soundtrack Series? Not very popular. However, one eager admirer was so inspired by our idea that he went along and made his own edition to the soundtrack series. While it's not an official edition per se, we are very impressed by his keen contribution (and very excellent picks).
His choice is semi-obscure British director Shane Meadows ("Dead Man's Shoes"), he of the modest kitchen-sink dramas not unlike Mike Leigh ("Secrets & Lies," "Vera Drake") or Ken Loach ("Cathy Come Home," '06 Palme d'Or winner "The Wind That Shakes the Barley").
Our semi-anonymous contributor has no webspace to link to but says, “I just thought it was an interesting exercise to try. To be truthful, only about half this playlist is stuff I'd choose to listen to by myself [the sign of a true Soundtrack series, ed.] , but I think I could hear all of it fitting into a Meadows film - I was just quite inspired by the idea.”
Download: If I Were Shane Meadows
01- Stranglehold - UK Subs
02- Nite Klub - The Specials
03- The Teams That Meet in Caffs - Dexys Midnight Runners
04- Jeanne - Billy Bragg
05 - Middle of the Island - Christy Moore & Sinead O'Connor
06 - Tom the Model - Beth Gibbons & Rustin Man
07 - Song to the Siren - Tim Buckley
08 - One Nerve - Clayhill
09 - Say Goodbye to the City - Tindersticks
10 - He Lays in Reins - Calexico
11- She Bangs The Drums - The Stone Roses
12- Rude Boys Outa Jail - The Specials
13- Sweet & Dandy - Toots and the Maytals
14- Just When You're Thinkin' Things Over - The Charlatans
15- Sunflower - Paul Weller
Want to contribute with your own soundtrack series? Sure, just email me first cause I seriously have about 20 on the go and would hate to double up. And for now the more obscure, the better.
The film,"Paris Je T'aime" features every known director and actor in the movie industry. Ok, not actually, but sort of. The collection of love-letter vignettes about and in an around the city of lights was originally based around the 20 municipal boroughs of Paris (arrondissements) – one short film per borough – however, two of the shorts could not be properly integrated into the film, so the final film has 18 shorts.
They are directed by notables like Olivier Assayas ("Demonlover"), the Coen Brothers, Wes Craven, Alfonso Cuarón ("Childen of Men"), Alexander Payne ("Sideways"), Gérard Depardieu, Gus Van Sant, Walter Salles ("The Motorcycle Diaries"), Tom Tykwer ("Run Lola Run"), Christopher Doyle (cinematographer for Wong Kar-Wai's "In The Mood For Love") and seven other foreign, mostly French, directors you’ve never heard of. The full list is here.
The film stars, among 50,000 other actors, Natalie Portman, Steve Buscemi, Elijah Wood, Marianne Faithfull, Juliette Binoche, Catalina Sandino Moreno ("Maria Full of Grace"), Willem Dafoe, Ben Gazzara, Miranda Richardson, Maggie Gyllenhaal, Leonor Watling (the gorgeous, gorgeous hottie of "Talk To Her"), director Barbet Schroeder, Nick Nolte, Ludivine Sagnier ("Swimming Pool"), director Alexander Payne, Bob Hoskins, Gérard Depardieu, Gena Rowlands, Rufus Sewell, Emily Mortimer and Olga Kurylenko just to name a few.
The soundtrack features two new cover songs ("La Même Histoire," "We're All In The Dance") by photo-magazine-spread ingénue of the moment, Feist, plus a song from her longtime producer/collaborator Gonzales and Michael Andrews (multi-instrumentalist musician who composed the excellent twinkling electronic score to Miranda July’s “Me And You And Everyone We Know”)
The film had its premiere at the Toronto Film Festival last September and opens up in New York tomorrow (Friday May 4) in a very limited release and presumably around the rest of the country, shortly.
Download: Feist - "La Même Histoire" [mp3]
Watch: Paris Je T'aime trailer [French version featuring Feist]
"Nothing is a matter of probability. If you put your spirit to something that phenomenon will happen; when you are determined, when you deeply enter that dimension that I call the 'Dance of reality.' - Alejandro Jodorowsky
Just released to DVD are the films of Chilean-born, '60s crackpot surrealist Alejandro Jodorowsky. An acid-soaked hodgepodge of unintentionally funny psychedelia, gratuitous blood, gratuitous nudity and lesbianism, wanton religious and militaristic iconography and other hippie-laden hilarious nonsense, the film, "El Topo," became an instant cult-classic upon its release in 1970 (it’s ostensibly about a gunslinger on a “spiritual quest”).
In a move that by today's standards is credibility suicide, John Lennon and Yoko Ono at the time called “El Topo” the greatest film ever made (a statement yielding perhaps the most concrete evidence of Ono's Lennon indoctrination, other than moments of Double Fantasy,) at a midnight screening and their outrageous proclamation birthed the ridiculous cultural ritual of viewing bad, borderline unwatchable films for reasons other than their artistic merit (kitsch and irony values) at a time when most people are sleeping.
Beautifully shot, with a seemingly enormous budget, “El Topo,” and perhaps more pronouncedly, the follow-up, “The Holy Mountain” (1973), are recorded proof of the hippie-era gone wrong and the effects of too much LSD consumption.
For example: At the beginning of “Holy Mountain,” Jesus pisses his pants and an one armed legless man halls him on top of a crucifix so he can be stoned by devilishly laughing children. Then Christ comes down and smokes a J with the same stumpy Mexican dude who proceeds to caress his forehead with his stump; we’re not even 10 minutes into the film at this point.
‘Mountain’ was financed by John and Yoko, who convinced notorious slimy rock manager Allen Klein to dump money into this heir apparent (Klein’s ABKCO company are the folks finally re-releasing these films on DVD).
So influential were Jodorowsky’s cinematic monstrosities on the drug-addled and credulous ‘60s generation, that then lost-in-the-woods actor, Dennis Hopper enlisted the surrealist to help him rush-edit, his rarely-seen 1971 lost-in-Peru disaster, “The Last Movie.”
“With all the girls I said, 'You need to have sex with the director.' " - Jodorowsky
A snake-oil salesman, tireless self-promoter, and self-styled guru (this is a guy who liked to stage '60s hippie "happenings") Jodorowsky was once a mime, friend to Marcel Marceau, then tarot-card authority, and eventually became a general new-age fruitcake. Some critics saw "El Topo" as a counter-culture, post-Altamont masterpiece. Others like Pauline Kael thankfully saw through its hallucinatory dubiousness and woeful misogyny essentially labelling it as hippie rubbish.
However, 'Topo' does feature “The Three Amigos" villain, El Guapo which is never a bad thing (spoiler: he gets brutally killed within 10 minutes of being onscreen).
El Guapo: Are gringos falling from the sky?
[Ned falls from overhead and lands with a thud]
Jefe: Yes, El Guapo.
A product of the post-Manson, pre-Nixon, America’s-about-to-go-wrong-era, Jodorowsky’s films are a wonderful example of how the hippie generation became lost in its own indulgences.
In 1975, Jodorowsky almost shot Dune with Orson Welles, Mick Jagger and Salvador Dali, but fortunately or unfortunately, this probable hilarity never got past the production stage. The would-be cast of actors and artisans working on the film included Alain Delon, scriptwriter Dan O'Bannon, renowned science-fiction illustrator, Chris Foss, H.R Geiger, and comics legend Moebius (many of these people would later work on Ridley Scott’s Alien; Dune would eventually be ruined by another surrealist, David Lynch).
Pink Floyd and prog-rockers Magma were also allegedly on board to compose the score, but like many of the tales surrounding Jodorowsky's films, it was hard to determine legend and myth from fiction.
The director’s soundtracks, naturally, are also totally off their rockers; obscuro, freak-out psyche riffs full of entertaining flutes, chanting, and generally out-there grooviness.
Written by the director himself (naturally) with the help of arranger/conductor, Mexican cat, Martin Fierro (Under the name "Shades of Joy") the “El Topo” soundtrack features moments of free-jazz, acid-rock and other hippie ephemera. “The Holy Mountain” score is credited to free jazz deity Don Cherry and Archies keyboardist Ron Frangipane along with Jodorowsky of course. You can read more about them and Fierro’s personal thoughts over at the taste-making archivists at Dinosaur Gardens.
An interesting aside: People still buy into Jodorowsky's nonsense.
The now-graying director officiated Marilyn Manson's not-so-legal marriage to Dita Von Tese before he started fucking 18 year olds.
Download: Shades of Joy - "Dream" ("El Topo") [mp3]
Download: Shades of Joy - "Together" ("El Topo") [mp3]
Download: Alejandro Jodorowsky, Ronald Frangipane & Don Cherry -"Great Toad and Chameleon Battle" ("The Holy Mountain") [mp3]
Download: Alejandro Jodorowsky, Ronald Frangipane & Don Cherry - "Venus (Vond)" [mp3]
"The Films of Alejandro Jodorowsky" DVD trailer
The Playlist and their expanded membership (four fucking strong!) were lucky enough to check Icelandic sprite Queen Björk last night at Radio City Music Hall (Bjork starred and composed the music to Lars Von Trier’s “Dancer in the Dark,” a film Variety once called, "A 2 1/2 hour demo of auteurist self-importance that's artistically bankrupt on almost every level;" tenuous connection to blog manifesto made, yessssss!). Despite having koto players, a brass section and a coterie of other esoteric instruments and such, Björk mysteriously did not crawl up her arty ass or go down the Malkovich wormhole of pretentiousness and delivered an incredibly lively show of tracks culled mainly from her new album Volta (a record already up for the highly-coveted ugliest album cover of the year award) Highlights are as thus:
- The self-help rave-tune, “Declare Independence,” with it’s, “fly your freak flag high, you’re gonna be awesome, doooooood,” lyrics. The song is utterly tuneless on record, but live, it’s a welcome visceral experience ( the equally-aggro, “Pluto” from Homogenic worked similarly)
- The cute band introductions of knob twiddler, Mark Bell, piano man, Jónas Sen, synth-man Damien Taylor, drummer Chris Corsano and the lovely players of the Icelandic 10-piece female brass band who, “do not merit individual onstage recognition, tee hee!”
- The remarkable similarities of the aforementioned female brass band and the Looney Tunes Dodo bird.
- Heavy-set transgendered singer, Antony (sans the Johnsons) joyfully jumping around in a muumuu for a duet with Björk on “Dull Flames of Desire.”
- The prosaic inclusion of ingratiating fan-favorites, “Venus of a Boy,” “Army of Me,” and “Joga,” which were only slightly arty-fied beyond recognition.
- The surrounding menagerie of rock-critics by the Times, New Yorker, Rolling Stone and MTV.
- The guy fist-pounding his rave glow-stick into the air. At our last count he had been doing so for 26 minutes straight.
- Kenton's mom dancing in the aisle by herself.
*Picture affectionately stolen from the cut-and-paste press-release enthusiasts at Brooklyn Vegan, thanks in advance.
Download: Björk - "Innocence" [mp3]
Download: Björk - "Dull Flames of Desire" [mp3]
Appallingly polished corporate rockers/Cars wannabees Fountains of Wayne (they of the "Stacey's Mom" uber-hit and accompanying MILF-friendly video) have turned longtime admirers, into reluctant first-time haters. The Village Voice's Rob Harvilla has joined the tide of negative voices swimming against FOW's latest radio-ready jingle-fest, Traffic and Weather. Reviewers are collectively feeling the same: "We should expect much, much more from pop music than this kind of bullshit," Pitchfork railed; Former-fans at aspiring authoritarian-zine, Stylus make it personal, ". . . you'll wonder whether you ever truly liked them in the first place."
As much as we can't help but slyly smile with schadenfreude-ish told-you-so satisfaction, in the interest of principled fairness, we do acknowledge that Fountains songwriter (and least annoying member of this group) Adam Schlesinger is an important figure in pop music soundtracks. Schlesinger was the force behind the cloying, Mersey-beat-like songs in the ingratiating Tom Hank-helmed '50s pop group drama "That Thing You Do!" (the FOW bassist even earned himself the estimable title of Academy Award nominee for his effort).
Schlesinger composed and produced several slick and soulless original songs for the 2007 film about slick and soulless pop singers, "Music and Lyrics," but as he notes to the Onion A/V Club, "score by _____insert your name here_____," doesn't necessarily mean it's so.
"I tried to get [my name] taken [off the soundtrack title], because I only wrote three songs. There were a lot of other songwriters involved," he told the well-intentioned nerdlingers at the AV/Club. "It was just this crazy pre-negotiated [thing],...I was supposed to do the score... and the little bits of incidental piano music... I didn't even do. So it was just one of those movie-biz things where at the 11th hour when it was [being completed], the credits were already in there, and I actually went to the director and said, 'You should probably take that down, because it's wrong.' And they said it couldn't be done."
Ahh, that's showbiz, people! As much as Schlesinger's day-job is a shameless irritant, his Brill-Building-like workmanship is admirable and has been showcased in movies like, "Robots," "There's Something About Mary," "Josie And The Pussycats," "Art School Confidential," "Two Weeks Notice" and plenty of others.
Watch: Neil Sedaka - "Calendar Girls" [onstage with Fountains of Wayne at Joe's Pub 5/2, YouTube]
Alternative rock acts, Sonic Youth, Slint, Girls Against Boys and independent-rock-friendly (often known as "backpacker") rapper GZA will be performing what are widely considered their "classic records" this summer at a concert series called, "Don't Look Back." Only 5 years ago it took an album at least 20 years to achieve classic status, however accelerated blog-fagger culture has made it so records scarcely 10-years-old can be prematurely available for "classic" consideration. Next years festival will include classic albums by Peter, Bjorn & John, Takka Takka and Menomena.
Volume 1: Sofia Coppola
Volumes 2, 3, 4: Jim Jarmusch, Cameron Crowe and Michel Gondry
Volumes 5 & 6 : David Gordon Green and Miranda July
Volumes 7 & 8: Noah Baumbach and Quentin Tarantino
Volume 9: Wes Anderson
Volume 10: Spike Jonze
For the three people that care, upcoming playlists may or may not include (depending on my mood) Paul Thomas Anderson, a second Tarantino edition, Vincent Gallo and that's all I'll reveal for now (ooooh, secretive; like you give a rats ass). Suggestions are always, always welcome.
3.28.o8 update: In my A.D.D.-ness I've started to work on and come relatively close to finishing my Judd Apatow mix. Those that would like a rough, in-progress sneak peek can go here:
10.30.08 long-overdue update: We lost two ipods and then suffered a hard-drive crash. Don't keep your fingers crossed that any new ones will hit soon, but eventually, lots more will surface.
- Holy expository dialogue that sounds great on paper yet atrocious when spoken aloud in a film, there's a Sin City 2 trailer?
- Big Boi, the Ballet? [The Atlanta Journal-Constitution]
- Apparently on Girlmore Girls last night they talked about the indie-rock band Grizzly Bear. I suppose this meets the criterions of "where music and movies meet." We're not sure we care, but hey, links! [Stereogum]
- A look at original indie-actress, Adrienne Shelly's posthumous directorial effort, "Waitress." She was a Hal Hartley regular [NYTimes]
- The New Iron Man armor has been revealed. To the Internet! [Coming Soon]
- Oliver Assayas favorites, Sonic Youth will tour Daydream Nation. The "Don't Look Back" ATP series of classic albums performed in concert (dudes, if you're trying to evoke Dylan, it's "Dont Look Back," sans apostrophe. Get it right) also features Slint (Spiderland), GZA (Liquid Swords) and Girls Against Boys (Venus Luxure No 1 Baby) [Tripwire]
- The new Spinal Tap short is online. [MSNBC]
- "Thumbsucker" soundtrack composers the Polyphonic Spree have released an online mash-up.
- Thoughtful actress Rosario Dawson spoils the plot twist to her upcoming film at a Tribeca Film Fest panel. The rest of the cast shrinks incredulously. [Radar]
We think the Music From And Inspired By Spider-Man 3 soundtrack ("inspired by," *chuckle*) is some weak vanilla Stereogum/Zach Braff-esque nonsense, but kids love their indie-rock and maybe this shameless bid for traffic will help us. I guess that doesn't make us much better. Note: this album is coming out on "indie" label, Record Collection, which is one of those major subsidiary labels masquerading as an indie for credibility. If you know the StarTime label, you will find this Pearl Jam diss very ironic.
Download: The Flaming Lips - The Supreme Being Teached Spider-Man How To Be Loved [mp3]
Download: Yeah, Yeah, Yeahs - Sealings [mp3]
Download: The Walkmen - Red River [mp3]
- Canadian actress, turned director Sarah Polley may have more intergrity in her thumb than most of us have in our entire bodies. She turned down the female lead in "The Bourne Identity" and the role of grande dame groupie in "Almost Famous" (the latter went on to make Kate Hudson a tabloid star) basically because they didn't "feel right." However, the lefty socialist realized some of her punk-rock ideals were making her "boring, dogmatic [and] narrow.” Her directorial debut coaxes '60s icon Julie Christie out of retirement. [NYTimes]
- Jodie Foster will play Hitler's propaganda filmmaker, Leni Riefenstahl in an upcoming biopic. Potentially lionizing a known anti-semite? Prepare for controversy. [Guardian]
- Lawrence Olivier said Marlon Brando was a better actor than he in the fantastic-looking TCM documentary that airs tonight.[NYTimes]
- The "Fantastic Four" full-length sequel trailer has nerds all up in a tizzy. It looks as equally preposterously CGI'd and soulless as the first one.
- "Fight Club" writer, Chuck Palahniuk's "Choke" has been green-lit for film production. Sam Rockwell is set to star, and first-timer, actor Clark Gregg will be directing. Palahniuk claims the mother role will go to either Glenn Close, Annette Benning or Juliana Moore.
- Goonies actress Martha Plimpton talks to Feist. Her always-inclusive producer, Gonzalez says, "There are so many insipid female singer/songwriters and a lot of them have inferior instruments and also an attitude that is sort of playing into the cliché of how a girl is supposed to be ... some kind of victim. Feist seems to make you think of the time before that existed." To work with her, he says, is "like setting things right."[MTV]
- The incredibly unreliable British press is reporting the umpteenth Blur reunion with guitarist Graham Coxon. We'll pretend the last five years of false reports didn't happen. [NME]
- Nerds are rejoicing. Warner Bros. have snatched up the film rights to comics doyen Frank Miller's "Ronin." [Variety]
(thanks Tanya) But seriously, what sense does this make? She didn't sing the song in "Lost In Translation," she just happened to be in the movie that featured the song. Is this how the new meta-internet world works?
A few weeks back we told you all about Guy Maddin's "Brand Upon The Brain!" – the Winnipeg surrealist director's latest film that will play in local art-house theaters alongside orchestral accompaniment. We reported that Isabella Rossellini (the star of Maddin's "Saddest Music In the World") would be one of the special guest narrators of the film (and named a few potential others) and Maddin has now unveiled the the dates that his special orators will appear at. Guests include TV On The Radio singer Tunde Adebimpe, Lou Reed and partner Laurie Anderson, actor Crispin Glover, drag-star Justin Bond, poet John Ashbery, Spike Lee's sister Joie Lee and few other notable actors and New York figures. Actress Joan Chen will narrate in Los Angeles, but some dates are still TBD.
This travelling show will hit New York, L.A., Chicago and San Francisco.
San Francisco screening (at Castro Theater):
05-07 Joan Chen (8 p.m.)
New York screenings (at Village East Cinemas):
05-09 Crispin Glover (7 p.m. and 9:30 p.m.)
05-10 Anne Jackson (7 p.m.)
05-10 Eli Wallach (9:30 p.m.)
05-11 Joie Lee (7 p.m.)
05-11 Crispin Glover (9:30 p.m.)
05-12 Laurie Anderson (7 p.m.)
05-12 Lou Reed (9:30 p.m.)
05-13 Justin Bond (3 p.m.)
05-13 John Ashbery (7 p.m.)
05-13 Tunde Adebimpe (9:30 p.m.)
05-14 Edward Hibbert (7 p.m.)
05-14 Peter Scarlet (9:30 p.m.)
05-15 Isabella Rossellini (7 p.m. and 9:30 p.m.)
Chicago screenings (at Music Box Theatre):
05-18 Crispin Glover (7:30 p.m.)
05-19 Crispin Glover (2:30 p.m. and 7:30 p.m.)
05-20 Crispin Glover (2:30 p.m.)
Los Angeles screenings (at Egyptian Theatre):
06-08 TBA (7:30 p.m.)
06-09 TBA (7 p.m. and 9:30 p.m.)
06-10 TBA (7:30 p.m.)
David Gordon Green, director of such lyrical and atmospheric fare as "George Washington" and "All The Real Girls," is making a... stoner comedy? Yup, despite a failed-attempt at Hollywood with the adaptation of "A Confederacy of Dunces,"Green is making what will surely be his most mainstream movie, "The Pineapple Express." The film re-teams much of the "Freaks & Geeks" team, "40-Year-Old Virgin" producer Judd Apatow, and actors, Seth Rogan (the lead in this summer's soon-to-be smash, "Knocked Up") and James Franco (Harry Osborn in the "Spiderman" franchise) as pot-smoking buddies who get mixed up with a drug gang. News arrived today that Amber Heard (who plays the young Charlize Theron in "North Country") has joined the cast as the girlfriend who tries to make Rogen give up the wacky tobaccky.
Why a stoner comedy for someone more prone to Terrance Malick-esque navel-gazing and poetic camera work? DGG's wanted to try his hand at comedy for some time and basically has always been jumping at the chance to not become pigeonholed. Well, this film is that chance. 'Pineapple' is even being called a "studio stoner action comedy" which sounds even more ambitious that your average comedy. "This project is an opportunity to plant an absurd buddy comedy in a rough-and-tumble action movie,” Green told Variety a few months back. “I’ve always been a sucker for the genre and hungry to fire up a comedy where characters don’t get lost in their own concept.”
Apatow, who has become a major player in Hollywood after a lot of smaller work like 'Geeks' and 'Undeclared,' has a great attitude about the offbeat choices he uses for his films. "We try to choose directors who will bring a completely different artistic bent to these movies," he told Chud. "So Greg Mottola, who did The Daytrippers, directed [the upcoming summer comedy] Superbad, and it’s just way better than it ever should be. We’re making the shocking choice to hire artists to direct our R-rated comedies."
This would probably be a good time to talk about DGG's great scores that are generally written by David Wingo (also of the atmospheric band Ola Podrida) and Michael Linnen; simple and beautiful acoustic compositions befitting of Green's usually slow-moving films, but there's a lot to say, so that's another post for now (
full disclosure: I was tired and wanted to go home, 4/30).
OK, picking up from yesterday. Long before "Friday Night Lights" was extolling the virtues of Explosions in the Sky, Green had used them, Mogwai, Labradford, Boxhead Ensemble and other ambient post-rockers in his films. He's established a good rapport with musicians; Bonnie Prince Billy recorded an original song, "All These Vicious Dogs" for "All The Real Girls," and Green told me in an interview with MTV (this part was never published), that Sparklehorse would've basically given him music for free if it weren't for Capitol records having to be involved. The overcaffienated Phillip Glass score for "Undertow" was an unfortunate experiment that didn't work, but that film did include moody songs by North Carolina locals (where DGG went to film school) Pyramid and Dynamite Brothers. Green said he wrote the entire movie to Neil Young's "Cortez The Killer," but could not afford the rights to the song. He's also talked about using songs by Captain Beefheart and Sixteen Horsepower, but this has not come to fruition as of yet. His version of the "Undertow" trailer used a throttling song by the Refused, but the studio ixnayed his cut (they NYTimes article that had this tidbit seems to have gone awol).
"Snow Angels" premieres June 1 at BAM in Brooklyn, but there's no word on that soundtrack other than the fact Wingo and Linnen are both contributing incidental music again.
"All The Real Girls" trailer (featuring a slower version of Wingo and Linnen's "Hot Tub")
Jim Jarmusch and Steven Soderberg get a lot of the credit for the birth of independent American cinema in the '90s, but an auteur often overlooked during this period is affable beanstalk Hal Hartley. Utilizing a very stylized, dead-pan, quirky and theatrical manner of dialogue and acting (i.e., not the way real people talk at all), Hartley's films inspired and people like Kevin Smith and Kevin Williamson. While the indie filmmaker has never really achieved any major mainstream success, his quirky and original stories (like "Amateur," "Simple Men" and "Surviving Desire") have gained him a very loyal and devout following.
Hartley's upcoming film "Fay Grim" is the 10-years later sequel to what many consider his last great film 1997's, "Henry Fool." An espionage thriller of sorts (albeit likely very quirky and personal as Hartley's films are), the film stars Parker Posey as the eponymous Grim who is coerced by a CIA agent (Jeff Goldblum) to try and locate notebooks that belonged to her fugitive ex-husband (Henry Fool's Thomas Jay Ryan) containing secrets that could compromise U.S. security. The search brings her to Paris and the intrigue and existential hilarity likely ensues. 'Grim' premiered at the Toronto Film Festival in 2006 and will get a regular theatrical release in July.
One of the semi-peculiar things about Hartley's film was the mysterious man Ned Rifle who composed all the scores to his films. Turns out Rifle was the pseudonym Hartley used to record his soundtracks (often on a 4-track cassette recorder and sometimes with the aide of friend Phillip Reed).
Matthew: I respect and admire you.
Maria: Is that love?
Matthew: No, that's respect and admiration.
- Hal Hartley's Trust
Music, has always been a elemental part of Hartley's films. In fact, the "Amateur" CD might be the original indie-rock soundtrack. Year before there were hip, dime-a-dozen indie-rock soundtracks, shilling out b-sides no one really wanted, Hartley was utilizing classic album tracks by My Bloody Valentine ("Only Shallow"), Pavement ("Here") Liz Phair, Red Red Meat and PJ Harvey. Earlier films like "Simple Men" used Sonic Youth (see video below) and Hartley-favorites, Yo La Tengo.
Hartley took the music thing even further when he cast PJ Harvey as the lead in 1999's not-well-seen "The Book of Life"
What happened to Hartley's career after Henry Fool? Many, many fans of his (myself included) universally felt that the quality of his films and subject matters took a major nosedive. This fantastic New York article basically asked the same question. (In fact some of his movies, like 2005's "The Girl from Monday" came and went faster than you could say "screening in limited release.")
But aside from perhaps failing his fans, the worst thing he ever did was beget Kevin Smith (who once said he unfortunately started making movies because of Hal Hartley; in fact Hartley is thanked in the ending credits of "Clerks" -- Smith's world being the dumbed-down Jersey-fied version of Hartley's literate and stylized one.)
Hartley received some weird and unfortunate mainstream press late last year when one of his regular acting troupe members, Adrienne Shelly was tragically murdered in November.
Download: Ned Rifle - "End Credits - Simple Men"
Download: Yo La Tengo - "Some Kinda Fatigue" (Simple Men)
Download: Ether - "Rou Des Jours" (Surviving Desire)
Download: Ned Rifle - "Cue #32 - Simple Men"
We must say, the "Fay Grim" Trailer looks like a full-on comeback for Hartley.
I Can't Stand The Quiet
Hartley's "Simple Men" dance-party homage to Jean-Luc Godard's "Band of Outsiders" (only with Sonic Youth's "Kool Thing") was always one of my favorite film moments.
Here's the original scene from: Jean-Luc Godard's "Bande à part"