"This one is for love! And this one is for Valentine's! This one is for romance! This one is for Elizabeth Barrett Browning! This is for 'How do I love thee!' This is for..."--Linus in Be My Valentine, Charlie Brown
#324 | Feb 9, 2010
You've heard of "Slow Food"? Well, fresh up on GreenCine Daily, Vadim Rizov dissects a new trend: Slow Criticism: "When I first heard the term, I assumed it was some kind of critical equivalent to Roger Ebert's beloved slow rice cooker, with thoughts steeped in years of reflection, put out at leisure, with no regard for what's trendy or driving site traffic. As someone who blogs every day, I can't say I don't appreciate the promise of a different path, a brighter day somewhere." More >>
In This Dispatch:
  • What's New: A Serious Man, Bronson, and more.
  • What We're Watching: Import/Export, Lioness, Whip It.
  • Explore: Eleven Minutes podcast.
  • Special Promo: Filmaster.com.
The Coen Brothers' latest, which GC's Craig Phillips picked as the 7th best film of 2009, as both incredibly "nihilistic [and] a really great cosmic joke," is "hauntingly original," says David Edelstein, offering "one of the most remarkable oeuvres in modern film." Adds Kenneth Turan, the Coens have "seized the opportunity afforded by the Oscar-winning success of No Country for Old Men, to make their most personal, most intensely Jewish film, a pitch-perfect comedy of despair that, against some odds, turns out to be one of their most universal as well."
Nicolas Winding Refn's (The Pusher Trilogy) "powerful and rigorously stylish tragicomedy," GC's Aaron Hillis writes, "builds to a primal scream during a bravura opening sequence (revamping Oldboy's one-man-army hallway scroll with mosh-pit intimacy), then maintains the intensity, with bleak humor and unexpected pathos." Adds Andrew O'Hehir: "Bronson owes a little or a lot to Kubrick's Clockwork Orange, but if that's a crime I wish more people would commit it." Peter Travers: "[Tom] Hardy's electrifying performance will knock you for a loop."
What We're Watching
The Austrian director Ulrich Seidl makes uneasy films. There's a hint of black humor, but it's kept at a great distance, as if only Seidl were truly in on the joke; if his movies were a party, you might laugh along -- even if you didn't understand -- just so you wouldn't feel left out. There's also a mean undercurrent that, if the jokes don't work, can cause the work to feel abhorrent and cruel. His 2001 Dog Days -- released in the United States in 2003 -- divided reviewers right down the middle (this reviewer hated it) but his latest film Import Export (from 2007, but newly available on DVD) adds the welcome element of humanity to stand between the cruelty and humor....Read review >>
More like this Winter Sleepers | Antares
The first half of Lioness, co-directors' Meg McLagan's and Daria Sommers' debut, focuses on the arcane circumstances that brought the first unit of female combat fighters (dubbed "Team Lioness") together. Since the Iraq invasion has never been officially declared a war, there are technically no combat missions being fought there. Ergo, female soldiers can be placed on the frontlines of any engagement despite it presently being illegal for them to serve in combat situations. The Marines' missions focus on following up on gathered intelligence routing out insurgents and terrorist cells, which are typically run out of private residences. Because male American... Read more >>
Here's a plea to those who might've sadly ignored Drew Barrymore's directorial debut last week simply because, well, it's Drew Barrymore's directorial debut. The former Charlie's Angel hasn't exactly developed a distinct style and vision to canonize her as a great American auteur or anything, but in her capable hands, a potentially hoary coming-of-ager about a small-town Texas high schooler who finds empowerment through an all-girl roller derby league proves to be an infectious, emotionally credible dramedy with a decidedly postfeminist ideology. More movies deserve to focus on the kinds of progressively written female characters Whip It offers in teams, but almost as important, it's a kick-ass entertainment, too.... Read review >>
When Eleven Minutes -- out today on DVD -- was first released last year, Aaron Hillis sat down with its subject, fashion designer Jay McCarroll, to chat about what it's like to have his life exposed to the masses, the misconceptions people have gleaned from his screen personality, and why he only retains the memories that have been recorded on camera. The resulting podcast is available here.
Special Promotions
Expand your cinephile circle with Filmaster.com, a new social network for film buffs featuring personalized content and recommendations. Filmaster allows you to run your own movie blog in a great domain like you.filmaster.com, rate movies and talk about movies with people whose opinions you care about. GreenCiners, join the conversation and connect with us here.

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