"I was having this dream, the feeling of a gap between what I believe in, and what my life is like day to day..." - Milestones.
#429 | February 21, 2012
INTERVIEW: Michael Roskam
Perhaps the most dapper dude bouncing around last year's Fantastic Fest, Belgian filmmaker Michael Roskam made a huge impression with his debut feature Bullhead. The film won Best Picture, Actor and Director in the fest's "Next Wave" section, anticipating greater triumphs to come: it's one of five contenders for best foreign film at Sunday's Academy Awards. The film's evolution from low-life in the Lowlands crime drama to near-operatic tragedy has an undeniable, forceful sweep, commanded by Schoenaerts' astonishing performance. While in Los Angeles last week to promote the film, Roskam spoke about its origins, his unique bond with Schoenaerts and what it feels like to have your first film nominated for an Oscar. Read more >>
In This Dispatch:
  • What's New: The Way, Martha Marcy May Marlene, and more.  
  • What We're Watching: Milestones / Ice, Three Outlaw Samurai (Criterion).
  • Explore: Oscar Night tweet-up 2012! Retro Active - After Dark, My Sweet.
Writer-Director-Producer Emilio Estevez cast his father, Martin Sheen, in the starring role in his graceful travelogue film The Way. Sheen protrays a greiving father who decides to take on the Camino de Santiago de Campostela, an 800-kilometer trail along the northwest coast of Spain, in the memory of his son who died along the way. "With such a strong grounding in setting and spirit, The Way ends up being one of those movies that works not just as a story but as a vivid, immersive experience, bringing viewers into the Camino's most legendary refugios...as well as the route's most breathtaking vistas. Funny, moving, hip and transcendent all at the same time, The Way is both deeply thoughtful and enormous fun to watch." (Ann Hornaday, Madison.com)
The Way
"Sean Durkin's Martha Marcy May Marlene starts in media res and hops between Before and After for the rest of the film. Before, Martha (Elizabeth Olsen) is a fresh-faced cult inductee in thrall to wiry creep Patrick (John Hawkes), whose high-toned rhetoric about communal living and folksy acoustic guitar performances are a cover for sexual abuse and worse," describes Vadim Rizov in his NYFF '11 Dispatch. LA Times Critic Betsy Sharkey hails it "A film of rough edges and no easy answers, nearly perfect in its imperfection... Though there is a lot of subtlety in the way things unfold, there is a directness to Durkin's dialogue that is as refreshing as it is jarring."
Martha Marcy May Marlene
What We're Watching
Milestones / Ice
Even in the context of underground cinema of the late 60’s and 70’s, Robert Kramer’s Milestones stands as a dizzying confluence of genres and styles, reality and fiction. Kramer is a prominent figure in the American DIY scene that existed forty years ago – a time when auteurs outside the Hollywood system, in lieu of the unprecedented access to video and computer technology that fuels today’s indies, were heir to a tradition that used real film stock and mother-of-invention ingenuity to plumb the possibilities of how celluloid, including its physical tangibility, could harnessed for expression. Part of a lineage that included predecessors like Stan Brakhage and Kenneth Anger, Kramer and his contemporaries merged text, still images, graphic design, and unconventional, daring editing and sound choices in endless ways. Read more >>
More like this  Easy RiderComing Apart
Three Outlaw Samuraihttp://www.greencine.com/webCatalog?id=297801
In Hideo’s Gosha’s Three Outlaw Samurai, the title characters aid peasants in their struggle against corrupt overlords. While this plot synopsis (and even the title of the film) suggests a sort of miniature version of Kurosawa’s Seven Samurai, the parallel is misleading. Both films are rousing adventures and represent the pinnacle of the chambara/samurai genre. But, for all of its swordplay and suspense, Gosha’s film is a bitter depiction of how evil can prevail even when good men do something to prevent it.  The film initially follows the itinerant Sakon Shiba (Tetsuro Tamba), a samurai without a master seeking his meager fortune in a war-torn, feudal society. The not-so-subtle opening shot is Shiba’s foot slipping and sinking calve-deep into a mud puddle. Read more >>
More like this  Sword of the BeastGoyokin
Explore
It's that time of year again - the 2012 Ocsars come to us this Sunday February 24, 2012! We're having another Oscars Tweet-up with some of our favorite film writers and pundits, so go here to join the fun, or follow the hashtag #OscarsGC on Twitter, and add your thoughts to the conversation!  Read more >>
Oscars Tweet-Up
Retro ACTIVE: This week's edition is inspired by the regional indie neo-noir Thin Ice. After Dark, My Sweet operates in a fugue state of despair, desire and doom from its opening moments, in which images from a boxing match jut up against the sight of pugilist Kevin "Kid" Collins (Jason Patric) emerging from a rocky mountain cave to wander through an anonymous Southwestern locale, his narration a bewildering stew of context-free lamentations. With hunched shoulders, dangling arms, and a head cocked low and a little to the side in a way that—like his distant, alternately cloudy and sharp eyes—indicates something's slightly off, he drifts into a bar for a cold beer.  Read more >>
RETRO ACTIVE: After Dark, My Sweet
 

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