Filmmaker Jonathan Nossiter weighs in on shifting terrains in the industry. The so-called “crisis” in Europe and North America is a euphemism, peddled by those who have lost nothing in the past few years, to soften the unacceptable shock of the new social-economic order. Among other victims, the culture of the artisanal gesture—authentic, free, and as old as our civilization—has been damaged as never before. Miraculously, in the world of wine, there is a group uniting rich and poor, Left and Right (though mostly Left and middle class) that has resisted with astonishing success. For years, I’ve wondered if my filmmaking colleagues would follow their lead. So I feel deeply relieved and excited to see that a growing number of my fellow filmmakers, consciously and unconsciously, are starting to follow the winemakers’ resistance to a cynical, corrupt, and wholly outdated system of production, distribution, and marketing with their own refusal of cinema’s systems of regulation and self-censorship.
Escapism is the mode as well as the subject of Moonrise Kingdom. This is another Anderson movie with a seemingly cheery ending in which, on closer scrutiny, there is not all that much to look forward to.
Mark Fisher and Rob White debate Christopher Nolan’s The Dark Knight Rises: is it a radical or reactionary film?
Mark Fisher looks back at the time-traveling thriller Source Code and its nightmare vision of the present.
Since Marey’s motion studies at the end of the nineteenth century, film has been a tool for providing visible evidence, a record of things seen. The development of digital imaging technology over the past twenty years has transformed that original empirical function.
Doubling is a paradigmatic trope in cinema, at every stratum from the technical doubling of apparatus and human perception, to the doubling of the worlds that exist on each side of the screen. It is ever with us.
By the end of the Inside Job Q&A with director Charles Ferguson and producer Audrey Marrs at the London Film Festival, October 27, it was clear that this documentary’s account of the colossal and coordinated act of financial malfeasance that led to the present economic crisis had elicited angry responses.
This completes three years of the column; it seems like a good time to run the film backward, to retrace the process of composition, more or less: to lay bare the mechanism, as the Russian formalists liked to say, and to make the operations visible as operations.
A new kind of apocalypse emerges in Cormac McCarthy’s 2006 novel, The Road. Nature here is not an active presence which verdantly reclaims former human habitations, as in a certain apocalyptic tradition which started with Mary Shelley’s The Last Man.
By common account, Avatar asks the great question of contemporary art, the one hip-hop has been asking unfailingly for some time: will we put up with a creepy worldview just because the sensuals are cool?