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Objectivity and Editing

screenshot from All We Left Behind

film still from our upcoming project All We Left Behind

Recently, I was watching Project Runway (one of my favorite television shows) with some friends and one of my friends mentioned that a designer was great but “she couldn’t edit” her own work. And the program itself, which is now running at an hour and 30 minutes, arguably could use some more editing to fit into a more manageable 60 minute chunk (of course, there are probably a number of ratings-related reasons why it instead runs 90 minutes).

As we work on editing our latest film, this got me thinking about the tough choices that creative folks in any industry must face. Continue reading

What’s Out There: Ouija is Really a Movie and It’s Here!

image via screenrant.com

image via screenrant.com

Of all the movies being released in theaters this coming Friday one of them stands out as having the chance to make horrible movie history. That movie is the cinematic embodiment of one of the most disappointing board games to ever make its way into households across America. I’m talking about the Ouija board. You may be asking yourself what could have possessed producers to pursue such a mind-numbingly idiotic idea? Well, here are some things you may not know about October’s sleeper horror fiasco.  Continue reading

The New York Times Magazine in Photographs

Gregory Crewdson, Julianne Moore, from “Dream House,” 2002.

Gregory Crewdson, Julianne Moore, from “Dream House,” 2002.

While the New York Times is well known as the largest metropolitan newspaper in the United States, its Sunday supplement, the New York Times Magazine, is widely known for its photography. This photography is currently the subject of an exhibition at the Aperture Gallery in New York City. Continue reading

What’s Out There: Guns, Weird Superheros and Psychos

image via movieplot.com

Image via movieplot.com

This Friday will see an eclectic, if not strange, grouping of movies to hit the big screen. Many of them may feel like regurgitated ideas put out to make a quick buck. Fortunately, the usual topics of war, crime-fighting and serial murderers are there for mass consumption. But before you venture into your cushy seats with a tub of popcorn, there are a few interesting facts you might want to know about this week’s slew of releases.  Continue reading

Throwback Thursday: A Lifetime in Front of the Camera

This week’s Throwback Thursday topic started all the way back in 1956. A forty-year-old Eli Wallach, yes forty, made his film debut in one of the more controversial films of the year. Baby Doll saw this well established stage actor try something new by becoming the sexually suggestive Silva Vacarro. While instructed not to outwardly seduce costar Carroll Baker, the player’s suave moves couldn’t be held from the imagination of audiences. Director Elia Kazan couldn’t have been happier with the outcome as his cinematic journey through the power of seduction worked effortlessly through Eli’s skills.  Continue reading

Throwback Thursday: The Memorable Influence Lupe Vélez

Photo from The Red List

Photo from The Red List

The history of cinema is littered with forgotten artists whose inventiveness was later perfected by the megastars that followed them. Lupe Vélez is a perfect example of this. Known for her “Mexican Spitfire” character, Lupe was one of the earliest representations of Latin-American women in the talkie era of Hollywood. Born into a military family in Mexico, Vélez was forced to take life into her own hands at an early age. After the disappearance of her father during the Mexican Revolution, she was forced to move her family to Mexico City and work as a warehouse clerk for four dollars a week. Her aggressive personality was always her standout feature, but it was on the big screen and stage where it became her trademark.  Continue reading

Four (Sometimes Embarrassing) Tales of Godzilla

Godzilla Poster

via Godzillamovie.com

On May 16th, the unstoppable rubber (now computer generated) monster Godzilla once again will rampage through the streets of some helpless city for our entertainment. Director Gareth Edwards (Monsters) appears to have done a fantastic job at creating the aura and gargantuine feeling associated with a movie befitting of the King of Monsters. The history of Godzilla is one that spans six decades. Some of that history has become cinematic folklore. Other aspects could definitely be appreciated for it’s unintentional comedic value.  Continue reading

The Best Football Movies to See Before the Big Game

Varsity Blues Promotional Photo via massreality.com

Varsity Blues Promotional Photo via massreality.com

If you live in New York you know that the Big Game is right around the corner. Giant toboggan rides in Times Square, traffic jams along the West Side and shirts in stores that aren’t our local, terrible teams’ apparel are stark indicators of the madness that the Super Bowl brings to an area. Nevertheless, people close and not so close to the northeast have their own way of preparing for this massive event. Some spend hours watching endless amounts of pre-game coverage that starts weeks before the event. Others like to dig into the old bag of movies for a flick that captures their favorite football memories.

Here are our top five favorite football movies:

1. Any Given Sunday (1999)

There probably hasn’t been another football movie as intense and surreal as Oliver Stone’s depiction of the fictional Miami Sharks. It is “in-your-face,” unforgiving, physical and any other movie cliche term you can throw at it. Starring Al Pacino as a washed up coach striving for one last glory-filled run, Any Given Sunday shows how a football team is a tremendously dysfunctional family from the field to the front office. It is also one of the only sports movie that unapologetically depicts character flaws without judgement. Yet still, you find yourself rooting for the characters to change and find success despite themselves. Not to mention, top to bottom, it is one of the most star-studded sports films with appearances by LL Cool J, Lawrence Taylor, Aaron Eckhart, Randy Quaid and James Woods. Definitely the best choice if you’re looking to get in a serious football mood. Especially Al Pacino’s rousingly inspirational speech before the big game! Continue reading

Top 5 Snow Day Movies

Snow Day Promotional Photo via moviegoods.com

Snow Day Promotional Photo via moviegoods.com

Lets face it! If you live in the northeast, this hasn’t been the easiest winter season on record. In fact, it reminds us of those mid-90′s snowstorms that kept everyone locked in their homes while schools, buses and trains tried to dig themselves back into service. So what do you do on days like this? You can go out and roll around in the snow but given the fact that it feels like we’re in the arctic-circle, you’ll be back inside before too long. That leaves only one option:

Watch a movie!

What better way to enjoy a snow day than by watching a frosty movie? Here are the five best Snow Day Movies: Continue reading

The Uneasy Battle of Art vs. Competition

Golden Globe photo: Getty Images via CNN.com

Golden Globe photo: Getty Images via CNN.com

At this point you really have to wonder if the curators of the Golden Globes and the Academy Awards continue to give Woody Allen awards in the hopes that he’ll, one day, show up to accept a little golden statue. Unfortunately, they have continued to be disappointed like a hopelessly romantic lover who shows up to the perfect dinner but ends up with a cold steak and an empty bottle of red wine. What seems like a snub to the overly indulgent Hollywood love-fests is actually a well thought out reason for not participating in the award show circus.

Without going into drawn out quotes, Allen feels that art cannot be judged in an objective competitive format. In its nature, film and art is extremely subjective. It is a theory that holds a great deal of merit. Many times I have found myself wondering how Life of Pi could be compared to a film like Argo or Django Unchained? And when a winner is named, does that mean said winner is better than the others? Is it proper to call the rest of the films losers? The nature of competition dictates that there must be one better than all others. One film would sit on top of the mountain while the others would be relegated to sit below. We won’t even get into the discussion on how being the best director does not mean you have the best film. Continue reading