Tuesday, June 10, 2008


-- The newly redesigned Artforum site now features a film column that is updated with new pieces a couple of times a week. Currently up: James Quandt on Sokurov's Alexandra; Brian Sholis on Derek Jarman; Jason Anderson on Steve McQueen's Hunger; Andrew Hultkrans on Godard; Cécile Whiting on the art documentary The Cool School, etc.

-- A trove of good reading at the Moving Image Source, including: Dan Sallitt on late Hawks; Jonathan Rosenbaum on William Klein; Chris Fujiwara on Naruse actor Tatsuya Nakadai; B. Kite on the new Richard Brody biography of Godard, etc.

-- Zach writes about Jonas Mekas and Hollis Frampton.

-- Dan in a post about Nakahira, Vadim, and composition: "When I watch a movie and think, “These images are intrinsically beautiful – this director really knows how to compose,” and then try to analyze the visual style, I often conclude that the compositions are balanced between two functions: showing the figure in the foreground, and showing the world. The balance is always managed in such a way that the shot can still function in the mind of the viewer as a depiction of the foreground figure; and yet the room or landscape is presented with some spatial integrity.

"And every time I watch a movie and think, “These images are dull and conventional,” I conclude upon further analysis that the compositions are framed as if they are trying to present only one object, or one idea, and that the image reduces in my mind to a concept."

-- The new issue of Cineaste has over a dozen essays available online, including several Web exclusives.

-- Two recently discovered blogs: Scarlett Cinema ("Women in Film Criticism"); and DinaView, run by Dina Iordanova, one of the contributors to the Chris Fujiwara-edited book, "Defining Moments in Movies".

-- via Keith Uhlich: Maxim Gorky in 1896 on seeing some Lumière films.

-- In the DVD Panache interview with David Hudson, we learn that one of his favorite film books is Geoffrey O'Brien's The Phantom Empire.

-- David points to the online publication Triple Canopy. The new issue features works by Michael Robinson and Keren Cytter.

-- Lots of good reading in the Kino Fist work issue, including pieces on Akerman and Godard.

-- via Mubarak: Jon Jost's blog.


Blogger Michael Kerpan said...

That should be "Naruse actor Tatsuya Nakadai". ;~}

June 10, 2008 1:28 PM  
Blogger girish said...

Oops. Thanks, Michael.

June 10, 2008 1:30 PM  
Blogger juliet small ernst said...

thank you for the wealth of links! i will be sorting through them later today and taking in the good reading.

your blog is a recent discovery and i'm really enjoying it (have i said this before?). thanks!

June 10, 2008 1:56 PM  
Blogger girish said...

Thanks, Juliet. I'm glad to discover your Touch Touch Publishing blog as well.

June 10, 2008 2:25 PM  
Blogger Adam Ross said...

Thanks for the link, Girish! I really enjoyed the Cineaste review of the Pierrot le Fou DVD -- I was considering a blind buy with it, and now I will definitely pick it up.

June 10, 2008 3:35 PM  
Blogger girish said...

You're very welcome, Adam. That's a fun series you run at your blog.

June 10, 2008 3:51 PM  
Blogger Noel Vera said...

That Gorky piece had already been anthologized in a Roger Ebert book on film essays. Not a big fan of the man (Ebert, not Gorky), probably won't ever be, but to be fair he does do good anthologies.

June 11, 2008 2:15 AM  
Blogger girish said...

Hi Noel -- I don't think I know any Ebert-edited anthologies. Do you know what this one's called?

June 11, 2008 7:18 AM  
Blogger Ed Howard said...

These posts are always a great source of reading, nice. I'd submit this great post from Ted Pigeon, which prompted an interesting discussion of gender, feminism, and the differences between films for guys and films for girls. Maybe some more people can join the discussion...

June 11, 2008 9:32 AM  
Blogger Zach Campbell said...

More than just in an Ebert anthology, the Gorky commentary seems to me to be one of the most-quoted pieces of film writing ever. For a while it seemed like any early/silent cinema book (and every other film theory book) I looked at had to mention it, even if only as an epigraph ...

June 11, 2008 1:41 PM  
Blogger Flickhead said...

A new article by Richard Armstrong on Jonathan Glazer’s Birth.

June 11, 2008 2:04 PM  
Blogger Noel Vera said...

Roger Ebert's Book of Film

Tolstoy also has a piece on cinema, where he predicts a conflict between commerce and art, if I remember right. Also a funny article on cartoon physics (I was thinking of doing something on kung fu physcis myself, and why Ang Lee doesn't know anything about them).

June 11, 2008 4:58 PM  
Blogger girish said...

Thanks for the links, Noel, Ed, Flickhead.

Zach, you're right: I've been bumping up against Gorky everywhere I turn. And speaking of early writing on cinema (although not quite as early as Gorky), I've been browsing an interesting collection of pieces from the the journal Close Up written in the late '20s/early'30s by people like Harry Alan Potamkin, poet/novelist H.D., and early feminist Dorothy Richardson. It's a British journal but there's little enthusiasm for British cinema in these pages; it's Soviet and French cinema they're truly excited about.

It's dauntingly large, but one of these days I'd love to systematically take up Eisenstein's body of writing.

June 12, 2008 8:53 AM  
Blogger girish said...

-- Jim Emerson on the recent Michael Atkinson comments on film criticism ("...it's not truly a full-time job") and Glenn Kenny's response to them.
-- Michael Guillen interviews Hye Seung Chung, author of Hollywood Asian: Philip Ahn and the Politics of Cross-Ethnic Performance (Temple University Press, 2006).
-- Acquarello at The Auteurs' Notebook on Jon Jost's Oui, Non (2002).
-- Peter Nellhaus compares two film versions of Elmore Leonard's The Big Bounce.
-- Craig Keller: "Richard Normandy for President."

June 12, 2008 9:06 AM  
Blogger girish said...

And this just in: At Film of the Month Club, Brian Darr kicks off the second club selection, Cecil B. De Mille's The Golden Chance (1915). (I haven't seen the DVD yet, but will do so very soon.)

June 12, 2008 9:13 AM  
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