Columns > Film

Sunday, November 14 2010

Tearjerkers, Weepies, Three-hanky Pictures, Sudsers & Other Such ‘Balloon Juice’

Men's movies show us a fantasy of the man we'd like to be (Tarzan or James Bond or Sam Spade), while women's movies are transmogrified dreams of women's real lives.


Thursday, November 4 2010

Take Your Daughter to Work Day: A Father Reflects on Years of Force-feeding Pop Culture to His Child

How will my daughter feel when her friends greet her in 2030 with an enthusiastic shout-out to Hannah Montana or SpongeBob SquarePants and she can only remember Bebop, Rocksteady, the Gentleman Ghost and Gyro Gearloose?


Wednesday, October 6 2010

‘The Grapes of Wrath’: The Specter of Tom Joad Emerges From America’s Dark Past, Once Again

With the current economic climate -- increasing rates of foreclosure, evictions, unemployment, poverty and misery -- this classic story dangerously impinges upon the present to reveal the specter of Tom Joad emerging from the darkness, once again.


Tuesday, October 5 2010

Hollywood’s Silent Sister Act: A Tearjerking Tragedienne, a Sparkling Comedienne

Mary Pickford was the biggest female star at the beginning of the '20s and Greta Garbo was the biggest at the finish, but in between there were none bigger than Norma and Constance Talmadge.


Friday, October 1 2010

Pacific Hell Amid Days of Heaven: Terrence Malick’s ‘The Thin Red Line’

PopMatters' Paul Maher speaks with cast and crew about what went into Terrence Malick's million-and-a-half feet of film (250 hours) that would become The Thin Red Line (re-released on DVD by Criterion, 28 September).


Thursday, September 2 2010

Masterpieces of Silent Film Are Rescued From Obscurity

Underworld, The Last Command, and The Docks of New York are masterpieces of visual storytelling -- human dramas expressed with cinematographic innovation, impeccably realized set design, and an unparalleled grasp of the “bigger picture” of the motion picture.


Wednesday, September 1 2010

‘Word Is Out’‘s Historical Importance Cannot Be Underestimated

Tales of secrecy, discrimination, discovery, bonding, and isolation and loneliness are common, not surprising considering the social and political climate for the LGBT community in the '70s.


Tuesday, August 31 2010

‘Eclipse’: A Sort of Romantic Kind of Fairytale

When I saw Eclipse, a gaggle of teenage girls behind me giggled, gasped and squealed their way through most of the film. Each time their hysteria erupted, it happened during a romantic scene.


Sunday, August 29 2010

‘Scott Pilgrim’ and What Movies Mean to Comics

Why do comics readers care about the movies made from their favorite books?


Thursday, August 19 2010

Rambo’s Hold Will Never Let (Us) Go

The essential point of this series of all the Rambo films, muddy as it has been made by the hateful final installment, is that Rambo represents the failure of the American people to come to terms with their misadventure in Vietnam.


Wednesday, August 4 2010

Pride and Prejudice

Clinging to the dictum “The personal is political”, and shunning such pesky realities as promiscuity, illness and civil rights, the progenitors of this Cinema Pride DVD have opted to focus simply on storytelling and character development.


Thursday, July 29 2010

Barbequing with Legends: Robert Duvall and Sissy Spacek on Cinema, Cinephilia and Good-Looking Shoes

On the eve of the release of Get Low, PopMatters talks with film legends Sissy Spacek and Robert Duvall about food criticism (sort of), film critics (without mentioning any, ahem, names), and of course, cute shoes (and a few other things).


Thursday, July 22 2010

The Archaeology of Comedy: Ancient Funnybones Found Intact

More valuable fossils have been unearthed from the strata of film history thanks to these Kino and Flicker Alley DVDs: a bunch of lost Keatons and one lost Roxie.


Wednesday, July 7 2010

Sequels We Were Unfairly Denied

While most moviegoers bemoan the glut of Hollywood sequels and remakes, City Slickers II: Coffee and Cake is just one of many unproduced sequels I wish we had the chance to see.


Tuesday, July 6 2010

Plan 9 for Ironic Appreciation: On B-movies, Riffing and Value-Added Irony

The RiffTrax line of DVDs reignites the enduring debate: Can something really be so bad that it's good?


Wednesday, June 23 2010

Vampires vs. Werewolves: An Immortal Pop Rivalry

Pop culture thrives on rivalries, but few are as epic as the one between werewolves and vampires -- a rivalry which predates Twilight by, oh, some 60 years.


Tuesday, June 8 2010

‘Shutter Island’: The Fragile Intersection Between Sanity and Insanity

Shutter Island concerns the surrender of one’s own subjective memory and identity to another individual or institution. In order to make that choice -- to become a passive player in someone else’s version of reality -- must one be sane or insane?


Tuesday, May 18 2010

Essential Female Melodrama: ‘The Bitter Tears of Petra von Kant’

Endorsed by the esteemed Susan Sontag as among the best films about women, Fassbinder's unique approach to the feminine psyche remains as daring today as it was when released in 1972.


Monday, May 17 2010

Fear of a Rap Parody

Underrated in the annals of hip-hop cinema, Rusty Cundieff's Fear of a Black Hat is biting and unflinching, and forces hip-hop fans to stare soberly at the culture's flaws and to revisit their own reasons for loving the music.


Monday, May 10 2010

‘Cause Who Would Hear Me Scream? A Faith No More Mixtape for the Joker

One could almost make the case that the four Faith No More albums produced during the Mike Patton era were written for the Joker.


//Mixed media
//Blogs

Authenticity Issues and the New Intimacies

// Marginal Utility

"The social-media companies have largely succeeded in persuading users of their platforms' neutrality. What we fail to see is that these new identities are no less contingent and dictated to us then the ones circumscribed by tradition; only now the constraints are imposed by for-profit companies in explicit service of gain.

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