May 26, 2011 / Filmwell
Kenji Koiso has his summer vacation all planned out: he and his friend Sakuma have …
October 12, 2009
Richard Brody is the movie editor of “Goings On About Town” in The New Yorker, and writes their blog, “The Front Row.” Some notable recent entries:
In MONKEYSHINES (Sep 14), Brody speculates that the failure of the Darwin biopic Creation (Amiel, 2009) to find an American distributor may have less to do with the opposition of religious conservatives than with the film’s apparent blandness – judging by its trailer. (Note: by the end of September the film had secured U.S. distribution, according to Christianity Today Movies.)
PALE RIDER (Sep 18) notes that Clint Eastwood’s 2008 film Gran Torino (a “brutal submission to his own mortality”), followed by his upcoming project (Hereafter, which ventures into “supernatural territory”), “suggests that the seventy-nine-year-old director’s thoughts are turning toward ‘the undiscover’d country from whose bourn / No traveller returns.'”
His September 26 post CRIES AND WHISPERS reflects on the auction of Ingmar Bergman’s personal effects, including what is likely the Seventh Seal chess set, its white king missing. Seeing these items separated into lots for sale “is a bitter lesson in how much, and how little, remains of a life. I imagine that the auction will be a sad and ironic occasion; I imagine it as the framing device for a movie by Max Ophüls about the great and recently deceased movie director.”
“The Front Row” surveys various critical responses to the Coen brothers’ latest, A Serious Man (INSIDE JOB, Oct 2), finding the film glib but commenting that the Coens are “setting up a modern-day Job, the idea (such as it is) being that neither a respectable profession nor a nice family nor steadfast principles provide shelter for all the misfortunes that can occur.” He also cites A.O. Scott:
So a question put before the congregation by A Serious Man is whether it makes the case for atheism or looks at the world from a divine point of view. Are the Coens mocking God, playing God or taking his side in a rigged cosmic game? What’s the difference?
And Brody gets cranky about Haneke in his October 6 post HANEKE CHRONICLES – in which a pair of pointed comments take the blogger to task. (See also the Anthony Lane profile of the Austrian director in the October 5 edition of the magazine: unfortunately, the complete article is unavailable online except to subscribers.) The post provides a link to a treasure chest of links to other online Haneke resources, courtesy Catherine Grant’s Film Studies For Free blog.