The year 2023 marks the fiftieth anniversary of the coup that toppled the socialist government of Salvador Allende and his Popular Unity coalition on September 11, 1973, unleashing a civic-military dictatorship that ruled Chile with terror for seventeen years. Five decades later, the consequences of the coup and the dictatorship are still in evidence, especially considering the ongoing constitutional process set in motion by the popular revolts of the so-called estallido social (“social uprising”) of October 2019.
The trailer for Meghan O’Hara and Mike Attie’s In Country (2014) opens with archival footage of the Vietnam War accompanied by a voice-over whose source is quickly revealed to be that of a man dressed in fatigues. The contrast between the grainy look of the archival footage and the crisp audio of the interview signals a dual temporality that is central to the film’s subject matter: an annual reenactment of the Vietnam War in the Oregon woods.
This marks my fortieth and final editorial as I step down from my post as editor in chief of this wonderful journal. Ten years ago, I accepted the helm of Film Quarterly with the intention of transforming it into a journal that I wanted to read, a journal that could offer the field of film and media studies an “alternative commons” instead of the usually siloed areas of identities, nationalities, sexualities, racializations, studies, and specializations that fracture it.
On August 4, 2023, Film Quarterly hosted a webinar examining the historic double strike by the Writers Guild of America (WGA) and the Screen Actors Guild (SAG-AFTRA). FQ Editor in Chief Rebecca Prime moderates a discussion of the issues at stake and the impact for film, media, and industry culture. With writer and Pose co-creator Steven Canals, scholar Kate Fortmueller (Georgia State University), screenwriter and former WGA president Howard Rodman, and screenwriter and filmmaker James Schamus.
The first English translation of a 2022 manifesto co-signed by 30 Hong Kong filmmakers, following the imposition of the national security law in 2020.
During the past forty years in Asian American cinema there have been three premieres that took my breath away: Chan Is Missing in 1982. Better Luck Tomorrow in 2002. Everything Everywhere All at Once in 2022. Twenty years apart, all signaled that the earth had shifted on its axis and the creative landscape of Asian America was on a collision course with the old, retrograde images of the past.
“Feels nice, doesn’t it? If nothing matters, then all the pain and guilt you feel for making nothing of your life goes away, sucked into a bagel.” With this absurd revelation, the transmigratory being Jobu Tapaki, née Joy Wang (Stephanie Hsu), invites her mother from this universe, Evelyn Wang (Michelle Yeoh), to join her quest for self-annihilation, taking the infinite worlds that make up the multiverse of Everything Everywhere All at Once (Daniel Kwan and Daniel Scheinert [“the Daniels”], 2022) along with them.
As I have often noted here, the US film, television, and streamer industries have failed—now for the sixth year in a row—to deliver any works addressing the toxic political climate or disastrous economics of the United States in the post-2016 era.
Film Quarterly’s original webinar series showcasing the best in recent film and media studies publications continued on May 12th with a conversation between Page Views editor Bruno Guaraná (Boston University) and Hunter Hargraves (Cal State Fullerton) about his new book Uncomfortable Television (Duke University Press, 2023). Moderated by FQ editor-in-chief B. Ruby Rich.
Mihaela Mihailova on the likely impacts of AI upon animation and visual-effects work.