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Transformer: Exploring Todd Solondz’ "Palindromes" Through the Eyes of the Russian Formalists

Transformer: Exploring Todd Solondz’ “Palindromes” Through the Eyes of the Russian Formalists

Overview I wrote “Transformer: Exploring Todd Solondz’ Palindromes Through the Eyes of the Russian Formalists,” in 2006—one semester before I dropped out of my PhD program. I have learned much about writing since producing this work, but I am publishing it here despite its flaws because it will never see the light of day if...
What Werner Herzog Got in Zee Mail From Us

What Werner Herzog Got in Zee Mail From Us

In 2008, I pitched a documentary idea to New German Cinema director Werner Herzog via snail mail. I sent the same pitch via email. His office completely ignored my snail mail, but replied to my email. In a tone that was both kind and playful, his employees explained that Mr. Herzog was otherwise engaged with...
Me and You and Terrence Malick and Miranda July: Guest Post by @Larryvillelife

Me and You and Terrence Malick and Miranda July: Guest Post by @Larryvillelife

Today’s guest blog is written by the mastermind behind the Larryville Chronicles blog, who prefers to remain anonymous, even though everyone in Lawrence knows who he is. Everyone in Lawrence also knows about his cultural sidekick, who happens to be invisible just like Harvey the Rabbit, which makes him more intriguing. Follow him on Twitter...
The Cinemaddict Speaks: Cowboys and Aliens

The Cinemaddict Speaks: Cowboys and Aliens

Note: To my friend Danny, who loved this movie – Sorry pal! I wanted to like it. But I also wanted to like the second and third Matrix movies, and that didn’t happen either. I’m glad you enjoyed it, buddy. I fully realize I can never review a film and say “You will hate this” or,...
When Films Speak in Tongues: On Fighting Foreign Film Phobia

When Films Speak in Tongues: On Fighting Foreign Film Phobia

Just as the people who witnessed the disciples speaking in tongues at Pentecost were alarmed, most people seem to be somewhat afraid of foreign films. “The film is in Chinese?” they say, as if I have just said, “The film wants to eat Neapolitan ice cream out of your hollowed-out skull.” “Yes, the film is in Chinese,”...
Leaded or Unleaded?: The Depressing Cinematic Dirges of Austere Auteur Ingmar Bergman

Leaded or Unleaded?: The Depressing Cinematic Dirges of Austere Auteur Ingmar Bergman

Before I became a PhD dropout – before I even applied to doctoral programs – I took a film class to bone up on the academic side of film so my communication degrees would not blind the professors who would receive my applications to my true interest: film. Yes, I had two full degrees in...
The Cinemaddict on Harmony Korine's "Mister Lonely"

The Cinemaddict on Harmony Korine’s “Mister Lonely”

You would think I would find it endearing when independent filmmaker Harmony Korine makes an appearance in a documentary on Norwegian black metal (Until the Light Takes Us), but nothing could save that meandering, formless film from mediocrity. I wanted to find it fascinating – this was a documentary about Satanic black metal bands who...
The Cinemaddict on John Huston's "Wise Blood"

The Cinemaddict on John Huston’s “Wise Blood”

Wise Blood (Dir. John Huston) **** (out of 5) Art Below by Josh Cochran. I am officially a Flannery O’Connor convert – a Flannery O’Connvert, I suppose. (Cue rimshot.) When I first heard about her and her status as one of America’s literary greats I suspected that I would find her to be someone else’s...
Painting With Wine and Blood: The Films of Zhang Yimou

Painting With Wine and Blood: The Films of Zhang Yimou

Flowering in the Shadow of Red Sorghum: A Look at a Lesser Trilogy by Zhang Yimou (Right-Click and “Save Target as” to Download) Like many Americans, my first exposure to Asian film came in 2000  through Taiwanese director Ang Lee’s Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon.  I had never seen the sort of acrobatic wire tricks that are common...
I Have Seen the Light (Or Rather, the Lens Flare)

I Have Seen the Light (Or Rather, the Lens Flare)

Punch-Drunk Love Paper (Right-Click and “Save Target as” to Download) The ability to suck the joy right out of a film is a super power possessed by most film students.  For a time I was one of those joy destroyers, but I had to leave the flock.  For your enjoyment and/or joy destruction I have provided...