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Jefferson Petrey
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Next week at Scarecrow Video!: http://blog.scarecrow.com/ - Much like Record Store Day: http://www.recordstoreday.com/ - and Independent Book Store Day: http://www.indiebookstoreday.com/- Video Store Day: http://www.videostoreday.com/ - is another event day to remind us to venture out into the world and participate in the locally owned cultural retail landscape. That is, if you live in an urban locale that still has retail opportunities that cater to your cultural interests. And like Record Store Day, there are fewer and fewer such opportunities: https://blog.adventuresinsightandsound.com/2017/09/new-york-city-as-surrogate-tracking.html - to be had in all of our major cities, across the United States. So if you're fortunate enough to have a urban community spot to purchase your books, rent your films, buy your records, shop for clothes, have a local grocer, or anything for that matter, October 20th is a great time to get out there and show your patronage!
That said, lets talk the incomparable one-of-a-kind resource that is Scarecrow: https://blog.adventuresinsightandsound.com/2014/08/scarecrow-video-and-grand-illusion.html - and how if you live in Seattle and are a fan of cinema (regardless of genre, era, or style) it's essentially your obligation to ensure their doors stay open for business. With nearly 130,000 films in their catalog: http://washingtonfilmworks.org/washington-filmworks-news/scarecrow-video-national-treasure - many out of print, foreign releases or ultra-rare editions, there is no singular online resource that will ever compare. Particularly when you take into consideration that "For Cinephiles, Netflix Is Less and Less an Option": http://ww2.kqed.org/arts/2014/09/12/netflix_streaming_dvds/ - and "Why Netflix (and Amazon), Lets Movie Lovers Down, and What to Do About It": http://www.nytimes.com/2016/11/13/movies/why-netflix-lets-movie-lovers-down-and-what-to-do-about-it.html -
Video Store Day will also be the four year anniversary of the successful funding of their kickstarter project for Scarecrow Video and The Grand Illusion Cinema: https://www.scarecrow.com/40/9820/what039s-new-and-different.html - in which The Scarecrow Project enabled the largest independently owned film rental collection in North America to go nonprofit. It also happily coincides with the anniversary of "2015 Stranger Genius Award in Film": http://www.thestranger.com/film/feature/2015/06/10/22342408/scarecrow-video-2015-stranger-genius-award-nominee-in-film - being awarded to Scarecrow, the proceeds from which contributed to the funding of future renovations, the expansion of their catalog and rebuilding of their Screening Room: http://www.thestranger.com/film/feature/2015/09/16/22862497/scarecrow-project-winner-of-the-2015-stranger-genius-award-in-film -
This month Scarecrow steps up with their October screening room calendar: http://blog.scarecrow.com/calendar/ - and curated Halloween section featuring domestic and international horror, sci-fi and genre movies: https://twitter.com/hashtag/scvpsychochallenge?src=hash & http://blog.scarecrow.com/haunted-landscapes-and-ghostly-guests-ten-great-gothic-films/ & http://blog.scarecrow.com/the-seasoned-ticket-20/ - And this year, like previous, their Psychotronic Challenge: http://blog.scarecrow.com/the-2018-scarecrow-psychotronic-challenge/ - returns for it's third installment, challenging viewers to select a new theme category for every day in October from the deep trivia of the cues on offer.
This year's Video Store Day specials include an Anniversary Auction with many rare, one of a kind, and high value items for the cinephile! As well as 50% Off all Criterion Collection titles: http://www.criterion.com/ - along with the annual 50% Off all used Blu-Ray and DVD stock which includes in it's many-shelved abundance releases on imprints like Kino Lorber, Zeitgeist Films, IFC, Magnolia Pictures and Music Box Films, Film Movement, Strand, Palm Pictures, New Yorker Video and Artificial Eye, some of which are now out of print. The day will also feature Scarecrow's usual array of prizes, giveaways from Music Box, Kino Lorber, MVD, Arrow Video, Lionsgate, and Criterion!

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Beginning this week and next at The Grand Illusion: http://grandillusioncinema.org/ - and Northwest Film Forum!: https://nwfilmforum.org/series/schlock-awe-reagan-era-horror/ - There isn't enough in the way of All Hallows' Eve theme programming and revival series in the local cinema. Which is a shame as this is truly the season for genre film and its frights, surrealism, and disorienting, crepuscular atmospheres. Thankfully, every year Scarecrow Video: http://blog.scarecrow.com/ - steps up with their October screening room calendar: http://blog.scarecrow.com/calendar/ - and curated Halloween selection of domestic and international horror, sci-fi and genre movies. This year, like previous, their Psychotronic Challenge: http://blog.scarecrow.com/the-2018-scarecrow-psychotronic-challenge/ - returns for it's third installment, challenging viewers to select a new theme category for every day in October from the deep trivia of the cues on offer. While we're here, lets talk the incomparable one-of-a-kind resource that is Scarecrow: https://blog.adventuresinsightandsound.com/2014/08/scarecrow-video-and-grand-illusion.html - and how if you live in the Northwest and are a fan of cinema (regardless of genre, era or style) it's essentially your personal obligation to ensure their doors stay open for business: https://www.thestranger.com/film/feature/2015/06/10/22342408/scarecrow-video-2015-stranger-genius-award-nominee-in-film -
For horror and genre aficionados, there is no other resource in North America like that offered by Scarecrow Video and their abundant catalog of obscure, foreign releases, out of print, and ultra-rare editions in the depths of their archive. With nearly 130,000 films on offer: http://washingtonfilmworks.org/washington-filmworks-news/scarecrow-video-national-treasure - there is no singular online streaming resource that can compare: https://www.kqed.org/arts/10141066/netflix_streaming_dvds - In previous years, the annual citywide cinematic offerings for the months of October and November have seen a great set of films exploring desolate worlds, classic Japanese horror, a vampiric romaticism double feature: https://blog.adventuresinsightandsound.com/2016/09/all-monsters-attack-at-grand-illusion.html - and a night of music from a maestro of Italian horror: https://blog.adventuresinsightandsound.com/2016/10/fabio-frizzi-frizzi-2-fulci-west-coast.html - Also in the way of recent Halloween seasons of note, the local arthouse cinemas presented a an abundance on the theme of the haunted house in 2015: https://blog.adventuresinsightandsound.com/2015/10/guillermo-del-toros-new-film-crimson.html - and 2013 saw no small number of invaders from beyond: https://blog.adventuresinsightandsound.com/2013/10/david-lynchs-lost-highway-at-harvard.html - Last year was heavy on 1970s psychedelic and psychological horror from Europe: https://blog.adventuresinsightandsound.com/2017/10/all-monsters-attack-at-grand-illusion.html - particularly from the era of abundance seen in the subgenres of French Fantastique: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fantastique - and Italian Giallo: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Giallo -
One of the longest running, and most consistently satisfying of the local Halloween series has been The Grand Illusion Cinema's: http://grandillusioncinema.org/ - monthlong All Monsters Attack calendar of horror, creature features, classic thrillers, sci-fi, and cult cinema. This year's installment features the kind of core genre gems that audiences have come to expect, straight from the horror golden age of the late 70s through early 90s, alongside a small selection of 1930's studio masterworks. This year's set of offerings include Dominique Rocher's valiant attempt at breathing new life into the zombie genre, "The Night Eats the World": https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Night_Eats_the_World- Kathryn Bigelow's late-80s cult favorite western/vampire genre mashup "Near Dark": https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Near_Dark - and Antonia Bird's black humor cannibalism western "Ravenous": https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ravenous_(1999_film) - Both horror westerns additionally notable for their soundtracks by Tangerine Dream and Michael Nyman respectively. The first film adaptation of the Richard Connell: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Richard_Connell - story of the same name, and easily the best of them is the pre-code 1932 effort by Irving Pichel and Ernest B. Schoedsack. Their realization of "The Most Dangerous Game": https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Most_Dangerous_Game_(film) - would also be a early intersection of Schoedsack: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ernest_B._Schoedsack - and Merian C. Cooper: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Merian_C._Cooper - acting a producers. Astoundingly, only a year later the director/producer team would complete and release one of the all-time classic adventure creature features in the 1933 Schoedsack/Cooper "King Kong": https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/King_Kong_(1933_film) - In truth the production of both films was concurrent, as the nocturnal jungle sequences of "The Most Dangerous Game" were shot on the Kong set and the former's cast includes both "King Kong" leads, Fay Wray and Robert Armstrong.
Rounding out the series is the postmodern fare of Drew Goddard's Joss Whedon-funded "The Cabin in the Woods": https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Cabin_in_the_Woods - and a Halloween double feature including an often overlooked, (and of rare quality) production by Roger Corman: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Roger_Corman - An adaptation of the novel by the same name by Brian Aldiss, author of 1969's "Super-Toys Last All Summer Long": https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Supertoys_Last_All_Summer_Long - which later garnered the imagination of Stanley Kubrick: https://www.wired.com/1997/01/ffsupertoys/ - returning after a 18 year hiatus "Frankenstein Unbound": https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Frankenstein_Unbound - would be Corman's final directorial effort. Starring John Hurt, Raul Julia, and Bridget Fonda, the cast alone is an indicator of the greater-than-usual legitimacy of the Corman project and it's circuitous conception of the classic Mary Shelley novel. Presented by the Sprocket Society: http://sprocketsociety.org/ - on the 200th Anniversary of the release of Shelly's "Frankenstein; Or, The Modern Prometheus": https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Frankenstein - the night will also screen a as-yet disclosed "secret" second feature.
This past June's issue of Sight & Sound: https://www.bfi.org.uk/news-opinion/sight-sound-magazine/june-2018-issue - and their "The Other Side of 80s America": https://www.bfi.org.uk/news-opinion/sight-sound-magazine/features/deep-focus/other-side-reaganite-1980s-american-cinema - cover feature focused on the parallel faced of the decade's cinema from the United States. Concurrent with the pop culture revelry of Reaganite family-oriented dramas: https://www.bfi.org.uk/news-opinion/sight-sound-magazine/comment/bradlands/entity-sidney-j-furie-horror-patriarchy-haunted-house-gothic-evil - action, teen movies: https://www.bfi.org.uk/news-opinion/sight-sound-magazine/features/1980s-american-indie-teenagers-reagan-era-cinema - and sci-fi blockbusters, a more rebellious and independent strain of US movie making scratched at the darkness on the edge of mainstream society. Anne Billson's supporting article "A Nightmare on Main Street" plumbs the deeper realms of the decade's more assertively subversive low-to-medium budget genre fare, these often “unburdened by notions of good taste". Behind the facade of 80s corporate cinema, upstart movies like Brian Yuzna’s "Society", James M. Muro’s "Street Trash", Abel Ferrara's "Ms. 45", Michael Mann's "Manhunter", Jack Sholder's "The Hidden", William Lustig's "Maniac Cop", John Carpenter's "They Live", Sam Raimi's "Evil Dead", Steve De Jarnatt's "Miracle Mile", and Larry Cohen, in films such as "Q: The Winged Serpent" and "The Stuff", were making horror, sci-fi, and fantasy movies that exposed the toxic underbelly of Reaganomics America.
Seemingly taking a cue from the above Nick Pinkerton feature for the BFI, Northwest Film Forum have assembled a monthlong Wednesday night Shock & Awe: Horror During the Reagan Years: https://nwfilmforum.org/series/schlock-awe-reagan-era-horror/ - series. A gratuitous assembly of subversive political allegory, class conflict, gore and pure mania, Brian Yuzna's "Society": https://nwfilmforum.org/films/schlock-awe-society-brian-yuzna-screaming-mad-george/ - is probably best representative of the series' themes. Also on offer are Greydon Clark's "Wacko": https://nwfilmforum.org/films/schlock-and-awe-wacko-greydon-clark-rare-35mm-grossout-comedy/ - parody of 1980's slasher franchises, and Peter Medak's haunted house classic starring George C. Scott. Of regional interest, "The Changeling": https://nwfilmforum.org/films/schlock-and-awe-the-changeling-george-c-scott-seattle/ - is set in and around the Pacific Northwest, as Scott's protagonist has relocated to the University of Washington for a professorship after the tragic death of his family. Seeking a secluded location to write music and find isolation in his studies, he instead encounters one of the more memorable supernatural houses of the 80s. And no overview of horror of the decade would be complete without the work of both John Carpenter: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/John_Carpenter - and the grandfather of zombie films George A. Romero's: https://www.theguardian.com/film/2017/jul/17/george-a-romero-director-night-of-the-living-dead-zombies - later entries in his "Dead" franchise: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Night_of_the_Living_Dead_(film_series) - At the height of the Cold War, it's no wonder we find the protagonists of Romero's "Day of the Dead": https://nwfilmforum.org/films/schlock-awe-day-of-the-dead-george-romero/ - holding out against the undead hordes in a ICBM silo, as the world rages outside.
Following the success of one of the earliest entries in the American slasher genre with "Halloween": https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Halloween_(1978_film) - and before the career defining "Escape from New York": https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Escape_from_New_York - Carpenter's numerous contributions to 80s genre cinema are represented in the series with "The Fog": https://nwfilmforum.org/films/schlock-and-awe-john-carpenters-the-fog/ - While visiting Stonehenge during the UK promotion of "Assault on Precinct 13", Carpenter was inspired: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Fog#Development - to make a ghostly revenge film drawing equally from the horror comics of the 1950s by publishers like EC, and their notorious "Tales from the Crypt": https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/EC_Comics#Backlash - as well as a 1958 British creature thriller titled, "The Trollenberg Terror": https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Trollenberg_Terror - Also central to any A-list assembly of the decade's best horror, Sam Raimi's first two "Evil Dead": https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Evil_Dead - films are still a visceral, preposterous, and hysterical symphony of low budget innovation. Building a whole career for television and cinema: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sam_Raimi#Recurring_trademarks,_motifs,_and_partners - from the boundless invention of these two films, Sam Raimi's reworking of his first "The Evil Dead" into it's even more boundless second generation, "Evil Dead 2: Dead by Dawn": https://nwfilmforum.org/films/schlock-awe-evil-dead-ii-dead-by-dawn-sam-raimi-4k/ - is the spastic springboard from which this influential American director launched his career.

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Next week at Columbia City Theater!: https://www.stgpresents.org/tickets/eventdetail/4093/-/michael-gira-swans - Having led the towering rock outfit SWANS through numerous manifestations over the decades since it's inception, including a brief phase as the folk ensemble The Angels of Light: http://younggodrecords.com/pages/angels-of-light-michael-gira - change and transfiguration have been one of their great constants of Michael Gira's lifelong music endeavor. The cartography of this almost four decades-spanning terrain mapped for Exclaim in Dimitri Nasrallah's "Michael Gira: from SWANS Uncompromising Sound to Ethereal Angels of Light": http://exclaim.ca/music/article/michael_gira-from_uncompromising_swans_to_ethereal_angels_of_light - and in greater detail and intimacy by friends, fellow musicians and peers in Nick Soulsby's recently published oral history of the band, "SWANS: Sacrifice and Transcendence": http://jawbonepress.com/swans-sacrifice-and-transcendence/ -
2018 sees another of these metamorphosis, as Gira has taken a second brief hiatus to reconfigure SWANS: https://younggodrecords.com/blogs/news/a-note-from-michael-gira-of-swans - Unlike the decade departure of The Angels of Light, Gira has established that a future as-yet conceived arrangement of the band is to return in coming years. Issuing a statement through his Young God Records: https://younggodrecords.com/blogs/news/m-gira-solo-tour-usa-and-more - site, the author and musician has established this period as a interstice between iterations of his dominant musical project. Filling the interlude to play, develop, and perform new works, Gira will be spanning the west coast on a monthlong solo acoustic tour this fall, with a date at Seattle's Columbia City Theater. In light of SWANS: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Swans_%28band%29 - last return and reformation after a 15 year hiatus: http://younggodrecords.com/news/96-swans/1530-swans-are-not-dead - in which they were manifest in the most powerful and expansive iteration to date, there is little cause to doubt they will return in a next state of renewal, reinvention, and creative metempsychosis.
At the end of their previous incarnation: http://www.nytimes.com/1997/01/27/arts/15-baleful-years-then-goodbye-cruel-world.html - with the grandiose heights scaled in "Soundtracks for the Blind": http://younggodrecords.com/collections/swans/products/soundtracks-for-the-blind - and "Swans are Dead": http://younggodrecords.com/collections/swans/products/swans-are-dead-live-95-97 - they took celestial ascension and physical bombast to literally epic durations and dynamic magnitide. The post-reform precision and brevity of "My Father Will Guide Me Up a Rope in the Sky": http://younggodrecords.com/collections/swans/products/my-father-will-guide-me-up-a-rope-to-the-sky - the more variegated and nuanced "The Seer": http://younggodrecords.com/home/658457004524-the-seer-cd - the extended forays heard on "To Be Kind": http://younggodrecords.com/collections/swans/products/to-be-kind - and rapturous hypnoticism of 2016's "The Glowing Man": http://younggodrecords.com/collections/swans/products/the-glowing-man - scale similarly Homeric heights heard two decades past.
"Michael Gira on ‘Dangling Off the Edge of a Cliff’ for SWANS Epic Final Album": http://observer.com/2016/07/michael-gira-on-dangling-off-the-edge-of-a-cliff-for-swans-epic-final-album/ - for The Observer maps the musical trajectory's Oroborous-like path back to itself, as SWANS of the 21st Century has birthed a supreme amalgam from it's own DNA. One that encapsulates the totality of their almost 40 year trajectory. From brutalist No Wave minimalism, to Musique Concrete and extended tonal and drone compositions, to electric rock, psychedelia, blues, folk and Americana. The Guardian's John Doran postulates how it came to pass that SWANS produced the best work of their career so far. Where so many other bands of a similar vintage have retread familiar ground, revisiting the formula of past successes, Gira and company chose to instead stake everything on a fresh roll of the dice. They took a genuine gamble on creating new art rather than trying to recapture past glories and in doing so, they conjured an, "Enduring Love: Why SWANS are More Vital Now than Ever": https://www.theguardian.com/music/2015/dec/04/enduring-love-why-swans-are-more-vital-now-than-ever -
The albums and live performances of this past decade, spanning 2010-2018, were the fruit of an extended, ever-evolving: http://www.popmatters.com/feature/finding-the-image-michael-gira-talks-swans-creative-process/ - recording process. "A Little Drop of Blood: Michael Gira of SWANS Interviewed": http://thequietus.com/articles/09847-swans-michael-gira-interview-2 - or The Quietus describes the often arduous writing, rehearsal, touring and recording in a dynamic creative systole and diastole. The undertaking of then translating these recorded works to a marathon live experience documented in an interview with Pitchfork of 2014, "Michael Gira Talks about How SWANS Returned without Losing Any Potency": http://pitchfork.com/features/interviews/9400-swans/ - Even more personal and confessional, The Quietus have produced a lengthy interview on the explicitly spiritual, transcendental nature of their live incarnation, "This is My Sermon: Michael Gira of SWANS Speaks": http://thequietus.com/articles/15163-michael-gira-swans-to-be-kind-interview -

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Next month at The Moore!: https://www.stgpresents.org/tickets/alphabetical/eventdetail/4138- - In a rare west coast series of performances: https://www.maxrichtermusic.com/2018/08/14/max-richter-north-american-tour-2018/ - this fall, German neoclassical and soundtrack compose, Max Richter: https://www.deutschegrammophon.com/en/artist/richter/ - will be performing selections from his albums, "Infra": https://www.deutschegrammophon.com/en/cat/4797006 - and "The Blue Notebooks": https://www.deutschegrammophon.com/en/cat/4835014 - backed by the American Contemporary Music Ensemble: https://www.acmemusic.org/ - Over the course of over 50 recordings: https://www.maxrichtermusic.com/music/ - spanning soundtracks for dance, theater, installation and film, alongside his own personal output beginning with 2002's "Memoryhouse", Richter has marked out a body of distinguished work in a field with such contemporaries as Jóhann Jóhannsson and Ólafur Arnalds. Many of these entries in Richter's recent and prolific catalog are commissioned works, such is the case with "Infra": http://waynemcgregor.com/productions/infra - a score for one of the composer's regular collaborators, Studio Wayne McGregor: http://waynemcgregor.com/about/wayne-mcgregor/ -
Not limited simply to modern dance work with McGregor, their collaborations have also embraced cutting edge installation and transmedia works like those of Random International: http://random-international.com/studio/ - Their "Future Self": http://random-international.com/work/future-self/ - for MADE: http://www.designboom.com/art/random-international-future-self-at-made-space-berlin/ - was one of the first in a series of successful installation and dance collaborations with McGregor and a score supplied by Richter: http://www.maxrichtermusic.com/en/news/view/191/MR - Following in rapid succession within the same year, the installation's premier at The Barbican: http://www.barbican.org.uk/artgallery/event-detail.asp?ID=13723 - was met with enthusiasm in the pages of the BBC: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/entertainment-arts-19827066 - and a glowing review from The Guardian: https://www.theguardian.com/artanddesign/2012/oct/03/random-international-rain-barbican - It's London run featuring a succession of live performances: http://random-international.com/news/wayne-mcgregor-random-dance-max-richter-random-international/ - taking place within the installation over the course of the 2012 Frieze Art Fair: http://www.guardian.co.uk/artanddesign/2012/oct/14/frieze-art-fair-2012-review -
Following immediately on the success of "Future Self" the trio's "Rain Room": https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rain_Room - made it's premier at The Barbican London the following year, to then come stateside at MoMA's PS1: http://www.momaps1.org/expo1/module/rainroom/ - as part of "EXPO 1: New York": http://www.momaps1.org/expo1/ - and the Los Angeles County Museum of Art: http://www.lacma.org/rainroom#about - for an extended run. At the former, as part of a group exhibition of environmental works on ecological challenges in the context of the economic and sociopolitical instability. Generating more than a bit of a sensation, favorable press and public response, the installation's time at PS1 was covered in The New York Times' "Steamy Wait Before a Walk in a Museum’s Rain": http://www.nytimes.com/2013/07/18/arts/steamy-wait-before-a-walk-in-a-museums-rain.html - With it's following run in Los Angeles featured by the LA Times, "Inside LACMA's Rain Room: An indoor Storm Where You Won't Get Wet": http://www.latimes.com/entertainment/arts/la-et-cm-lacma-rain-room-20151028-story.html -
Yet these are not the most audacious of Richter's meetings of composition, setting and performance. 2015 saw the composer realize his long developing 8 hour piece for the facilitation of "Sleep": http://www.deutschegrammophon.com/en/cat/4795267 - The full night-long composition is available as a recording for home consumption both digitally, as a ultra high fidelity Blu-Ray audio release: http://www.deutschegrammophon.com/en/cat/4795682 - as well as a separate edition of excerpt highlights conceived to represent the more engaged listening aspects, "From Sleep". But it is in performance that "Sleep": https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sleep_(album)#Live_performance - most explicitly realizes it's intent. Premiering in atypical venues across Europe, such as the Welcome Collection Reading Room: http://wellcomecollection.org/readingroom - in London this past fall, wherein the attendees nestled their campbeds between the reading room’s bookshelves and displays of alchemist flasks in anticipation of the clock striking midnight and the performance of Richter's "Eight-hour Lullaby for a Frenetic World": http://www.theguardian.com/culture/2015/sep/27/sleep-the-the-lullaby-for-our-frenetic-world -
Most recently, and a first of its kind in North America, Los Angeles Music Center: https://www.musiccenter.org/visit/about/About-The-Music-Center/ - which also programs and manages Grand Park, hosted two nights of outdoor performance: https://www.musiccenter.org/tickets/events-by-the-music-center/max-richters/prepare-for-your-sleep-experience/ - of "Sleep" under the summer skies this past July: https://www.maxrichtermusic.com/2018/06/15/sleep-los-angeles-27th-28th-july/ - The daring venture was met with more than a little anticipation for its experiment in duration and setting, represented by Rolling Stone's "Composer Max Richter to Perform Overnight L.A. Concerts with 560 Beds": https://www.rollingstone.com/music/music-news/composer-max-richter-to-perform-overnight-l-a-concerts-with-560-beds-629532/ - and the Los Angeles Times' "Composer Max Richter Wants Fans to Spend the Night in Grand Park": http://www.latimes.com/entertainment/music/la-et-ms-max-richter-sleep-grand-park-20180726-story.html - Through its successful realization, not least of which the political undertones of sleeping out of doors, August Brown's "The All-Night, Outdoor Concert 'Sleep' Creates a Calming Reprieve with a Sense of Loss": http://www.latimes.com/entertainment/music/la-et-ms-0730-sleep-live-20180727-story.html - accounts that “Sleep” was not just a beautiful, time-bending piece, but in this performance, contributed notably to re-imagining our public spaces.
Recognizing the New Music and American Minimalist connections Richter in an interview for Bomb: http://bombmagazine.org/article/2033930/max-richter - spoke of his longstanding; "interest in extended-duration things. With music, this goes back to the ’60s, those all-night happenings, like Terry Riley: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Theatre_of_Eternal_Music - and John Cage: http://www.theguardian.com/music/2014/jun/20/john-cage-and-his-musicircus - all that. It’s certainly an idea that’s been around a long time." There have been no shortage of coverage in the pages of The Los Angeles Times: http://www.latimes.com/entertainment/arts/la-ca-cm-max-richter-20150830-story.html - Time: http://time.com/4022816/max-richter-sleep/ - and NPR: http://www.npr.org/sections/deceptivecadence/2015/09/03/436963414/trouble-sleeping-a-composer-wants-to-help - connecting "Sleep" and it's benefits in relation to the media abundant and time-scarce lives that many people feel they lead. More than just a layman's low-key artistic response to these concerns, Richter consulted with Baylor College neuroscientist David Eagleman: http://time.com/4022816/max-richter-sleep/ - in developing his composition. Assembled over the course of two years, the project's genesis was born of Richter's desire to make a “very deliberate political statement” on how daily time is spent, and nature of how the public engages with their larger sonic environment.

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A contemporary syndrome not limited to examples like those found in San Francisco, Austin, and Seattle, where we've seen the upscale homogenization of what were once economically diverse, cultured, urban centers at the hands of the tech industry. Reading spanning a decade on this stratification of the American urban space, the corresponding accelerated retail marked and all the consequences therein, can be found in the pages of The New Yorker, The Guardian, NPR, and New York Times', "California Screaming": https://www.newyorker.com/magazine/2014/07/07/california-screaming & "Dystopia & Backlash by the Bay: Tech Riches Alter a City": https://www.nytimes.com/2013/12/06/opinion/dystopia-by-the-bay.html & https://www.nytimes.com/2013/11/25/us/backlash-by-the-bay-tech-riches-alter-a-city.html & "The Struggles Of Austin's Music Scene Mirror A Widened World": https://www.npr.org/sections/therecord/2017/02/24/516904340/the-struggles-of-austins-music-scene-mirror-a-widened-world & "How Big Tech Swallowed Seattle: Two Tech Titans Made Billions and Remade the City. Is it Any Better Off?": https://www.bloomberg.com/news/features/2018-08-30/how-big-tech-swallowed-seattle -
But it should be stressed that these effects and their source aren't just limited to the impact of the tech industry and its influence on the acceleration (and polarization) of the American city's communal and economic continuity. In a more expansive and broad sense, the 2008 recession created conditions which opened the way for the racially, culturally, and economically diverse urban centers of America's major cities to be replaced by upscale boutiques, luxury condo towers, and national chains. In the following decade these factors have largely remade modern urban life into a model of suburbanized luxury zone, with a price tag select few can afford. Mapping a single example of the accelerated "hyper-gentrification" of a city's often longstanding cultural and communal identity, Jeremiah Moss' "Vanishing New York: How a Great City Lost Its Soul": https://www.harpercollins.com/9780062439697/vanishing-new-york/ - finds in New York City a graphic stand-in for many of the nation's other accelerated urban shifts.
Interviewed for the Village Voice in 2017, which “The Village Voice’s Magic Mirror“: https://www.newyorker.com/culture/culture-desk/the-closing-of-the-village-voice-downtowns-magic-mirror - is itself to come to a conclusion as one of New York's most influential and longstanding cultural institutions, "Jeremiah Moss Mourns the Loss of New York’s Soul": https://www.villagevoice.com/2017/07/18/jeremiah-moss-was-here-vanishing-new-york/ - With Ginia Bellafante's review for The New York Times framing Moss' work within the larger context of the city's two concurrent, humanitarian and cultural crises, "Tracking the Hyper-Gentrification of New York, One Lost Knish Place at a Time": https://www.nytimes.com/2017/09/27/books/review/vanishing-new-york-jeremiah-moss.html -
"Bemoaning the changes that have plagued New York in recent years — the proliferation of $20 million apartments, the banks now on every corner visualizing the centrality of money to the city’s consciousness, the substitution of culinary virtue for a broader civic morality — has been an avocation for many people living in and around Manhattan for well over a decade. If you came of age in the city at any time from the earliest days of the Velvet Underground to the peak years of the Strokes, the conversion can feel acutely personal because the city that defined you belongs to history, and the one that has replaced it belongs to those on the winning side of its Darwinian economics — financiers who do what you don’t understand and real-estate businesses that build and displace with an impunity that remains all too clarifying."
"The 21st century has delivered two related crises, running concurrently: a humanitarian one, as Michael Greenberg, writing in The New York Review of Books: http://www.nybooks.com/articles/2017/08/17/tenants-under-siege-inside-new-york-city-housing-crisis/ - recently described the housing emergencies that have left more than 60,000 homeless in New York: http://www.wnyc.org/story/homelessness-crisis/ - and tens of thousands of others on the edge of vagrancy; and a cultural unraveling that has devalued, if not hostilely rejected, the significance of workers, bohemians and eccentrics (the struggling ones) to the city’s operating system. It is the second of these profound rearrangements that compels Jeremiah Moss, the pseudonym for a writer and psychoanalyst named Griffin Hansbury, "An Activist for New York’s Mom-and-Pop Shops": https://www.newyorker.com/magazine/2017/06/26/an-activist-for-new-yorks-mom-and-pop-shops - who has applied his formidable skill for vivisection to the various troubling outcomes. Ten years ago, he started a blog called Jeremiah’s Vanishing New York: http://vanishingnewyork.blogspot.com/ - that sought to record and investigate the closing of nearly every bar, luncheonette, florist, gas station, strip joint, bakery, knish place and so on that in the individual instance, and dramatically so in the amalgam, represents the razing of a foundational authenticity — the flattening of what, for so long, represented the city’s character."
"In the comparatively quaint days of the 1980s and ’90s, gentrification referred to the ways in which neighborhoods changed at the hands of largely well-meaning renovators who slowly remade their brownstones. Today we have “hyper-gentrification,” something far more insidious, and this is what concerns Moss most — the complicity between municipal government and big private money to reconfigure whole sections of a city, with dubious consequences, chief among them the ceding of space, goods and social currency from the ordinary classes to the ruling order."
"The phenomenon is best exemplified in the upending of the far West Side of Manhattan from Midtown on down, which Moss chronicles in rich, methodical detail. Twelve years ago, with the support of those who backed the High Line, the elevated rail track turned into a glistening public park (and a model for abandoned industrial land around the country), the city allowed property owners along the route to sell air rights. Those developers who paid for certain amenities to the park could build their towers even higher. Small businesses disappeared; ultraluxury condominiums followed, in some cases directly adjacent to public housing complexes whose residents lost many of the stores that serviced them. But the city’s mission was accomplished: a corridor to Hudson Yards, an entirely manufactured, high-end science-fiction neighborhood just north and under construction — “the cold artificial heart of new New York,” as he calls it — was established."

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The Grand Illusion Cinema: http://www.grandillusioncinema.org/ - hosts a one week run of the most recent offering “Let the Corpses Tan”: https://www.kinolorber.com/film/view/id/3081 - from genre cinema duo Helene Cattet & Bruno Forzani. The husband and wife directors appeared on the international scene with their 2009 debut feature "Amer": http://www.anonymesfilms.be/film_amer.html - seemingly fully-formed with their fusion of Eastern Bloc experimental film of the 60s, British psychedelic and occult film of the 70s, and a strong underpinning of the mechanisms of Italian Giallo: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Giallo - Returning four years later with “The Strange Colour of Your Body’s Tears”: http://www.anonymesfilms.be/film_etrange.html - their second feature establishing a even more assertive neo-Giallo style. More than simply an exercise in genre pastiche, they overwhelming the narrative with vibrant cinematography, taught editing, memorable locations and a finely sculpted aural environment. The duo took the influences of the classic films they loved and shaped them into a heightened, erotic, tension-filled form of their own. Critics have weighed in on the film's insistence of style over content, and almost excruciating complexity in it's editing and construct, but for fans of the genre there's a lot to advocate: https://www.rogerebert.com/reviews/the-strange-color-of-your-bodys-tears-2014 - it's maceration of the senses, "The Strange Color of Your Body’s Tears Will Break Your Brain": http://twitchfilm.com/2013/09/tiff-2013-review-the-strange-colour-of-your-bodies-tears-will-break-your-brain.html -
Premiering last year in the lineup of Locarno: https://mubi.com/notebook/posts/favorite-moments-from-locarno-festival-2017-3d-hurricane-gun-blast-bandit-hideout-wild-horses - and cited as a highlight of the festival: http://cinema-scope.com/cinema-scope-online/let-the-corpses-tan-helene-cattet-bruno-forzani-belgiumfrance-midnight-madness/ - the duo returned with another deep genre exercise “Let the Corpses Tan”: http://www.anonymesfilms.be/film_cadavres.html - Inspired by “Corpses in the Sun”: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jean-Patrick_Manchette#Major_novels - a 1971 novel by the French writers Jean-Patrick Manchette and Jean-Pierre Bastid, the director duo have wrestled the Spaghetti Western: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Spaghetti_Western - into their all-inclusive Giallo recipe. Concurrently making their first foray into crime movies, the film is a visually rich abstract of Eurocrime, sun-baked Mediterranean landscapes that invoke the western, and stylistic hooks including extreme close-ups and juxtapositions lifted from Sergio Leon, and the French New Wave.
A lurid bloodbath custom made for the cinephile, their work operates on more levels than just homage. As explored in their interview with Cinema-Scope, "Helene Cattet & Bruno Forzani: Giving Credibility to the Universe": http://cinema-scope.com/cinema-scope-magazine/giving-credibility-to-the-universe-helene-cattet-bruno-forzani-on-laissez-bronzer-les-cadavres/ - these genre deconstructions make apparent their influences, and rather than burying the source of their wellspring, the warping and stretching of technique and material watches as a celebration of its influence and lineage.
Cattet & Forzani are not alone in this work inspired by genre film and 20th Century cult cinema of decades past. A new tide of contemporary work has risen concurrently with the rich veins bring mined both in genre film soundtracks: http://thequietus.com/articles/13739-spencer-hickman-death-waltz-records-favourite-horror-soundtracks - and restorations and reissues of the films themselves. Reissue imprints like, Death Waltz: http://www.deathwaltzrecordingcompany.com/ - Mondo: http://mondotees.com/collections/music - and WaxWork: http://waxworkrecords.com/ - have unearthed rare and esoteric soundtracks, bringing them new life often in correspondence with restorations and theatrical re-release thanks to institutions like the American Genre Film Archive: https://www.americangenrefilm.com/ - Arrow Films: http://www.arrowfilms.co.uk/ - and Scream Factory: https://www.shoutfactory.com/tentpoles/scream-factory -
With these, there are whole new genres being born of the thematic beds of atmosphere and constructed worlds of Italian Giallo*, French Fantastique: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fantastique - and British Psychedelic, Pagan and Folk Horror: http://www.tasteofcinema.com/2014/10-great-british-folk-horror-films-that-are-worth-your-time/ - of the late 1960s and 70s. As well as the following American horror explosion of the late 1970s and 80s: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Horror_film#1970s.E2.80.931980s - It is the latter that North American recreations like the work of Panos Cosmatos has drawn most directly from. His 2010 directorial debut, "Beyond the Black Rainbow": http://www.magnetreleasing.com/beyondtheblackrainbow/ - much in the way of Cattet & Forzani, received high praise: https://thefilmstage.com/features/the-50-best-sci-fi-films-of-the-21st-century-thus-far/4/ - for it's re-creationist style and vision: https://www.villagevoice.com/2012/05/16/behold-the-pot-of-gold-that-is-beyond-the-black-rainbow/ -
The movie's painstaking pre-digital universe is given form by being shot on 35mm, with effects work entirely in-camera via airtight use of sets, makeup, lighting, matte work and other practical effects of the era in which it is both set, and evokes. In these, "Analogue Dreams: Beyond the Black Rainbow": http://cinema-scope.com/currency/analogue-dreams-panos-cosmatos-beyond-the-black-rainbow/ - willfully supplies evidence of Cosmatos' influences and inspiration. The film pilfers equally from the stylebooks of Stanley Kubrick, David Cronenberg: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/David_Cronenberg - Michael Anderson's "Logan's Run", early Douglas Trumbull, and Kenneth Anger: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kenneth_Anger - in it's assemble of a late-70s, early 1980s analog vision.
So meticulously assembled and executed, "Beyond the Black Rainbow", exists outside the parameters of the fetishization seen in lesser contemporary emulator films. By taking his pages this time from contemporaries, most notably those of Gaspar Noe: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gaspar_No%C3%A9 - and Nicolas Winding Refn: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nicolas_Winding_Refn - as much as past genre work, Cosmatos has upped the ante with his sophomore effort, "Mandy". Concocting a wedding of these forms with a unhinged genre vehicle overflowing with gloriously lurid cinematography, and a lead actor's penchant for bombast, "'Mandy' has Nicolas Cage Wreak Revenge at the Fiery Gates of Hell": https://www.bfi.org.uk/news-opinion/sight-sound-magazine/reviews-recommendations/mandy-nicolas-cage-panos-cosmatos-80s-style-hellraiser-revenge-quest - Ratcheting up the visceral engagement to such heights, and Jóhann Jóhannsson's: https://www.deutschegrammophon.com/en/artist/johannsson/ - pounding, sensory-fraying score, "Cosmatos’s Mock-1980s Oddball Nerd Fantasy Yarn": https://www.theguardian.com/film/2018/may/14/mandy-review-nicolas-cage-gory-vengeance-thriller - deftly circumnavigates the trappings of similar postmodern genre territory.

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Stepping up to fill the void left in the wake of Cinerama's now extinct Science Fiction Film Festival: http://blog.adventuresinsightandsound.com/2014/04/seattle-cineramas-second-annual-science.html - Paul Allen's state of the art theater with its Cinerama-Scope screen, Dolby Atmos sound and laser projection system: https://www.cinerama.com/Technology.aspx - will host a trio of festivals over the course of August and September. A standard for the cinema, one of the only remaining Cinerama screens: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cinerama - in North America, the third of the festival series will be presented on 70mm. Notably, the format showcase will feature the most recent de-restoration work on Stanley Kubrick's masterpiece, in a new print cut from an exacting analog reconstruction. Seattle Cinerama's three mini festivals begin with a second run series, Summer Rewind: https://cinerama.com/Festival.aspx?ec=0000000016 - consisting of a week of blockbusters and genre films that premiered over the course of this past year.
In stoke of brilliant curatorial work, the second of the series will feature conceptual double bills of works significant for their synergy of image and music. Taking it's theme literally and conceptually, Sound & Vision: https://cinerama.com/Festival.aspx?ec=0000000015 - draws from both heightened audiovisual works of sensorial fiction like Ridley Scott's dystopic neonoir franchise, as it does from Jonathan Demme and Nicolas Roeg's placement of musical stars at the film's locus. The thrill of classic soundtracks meeting with genre films of their time can be seen in Tim Burton's work with Prince, and Steven Spielberg's earliest megahits with John Williams. Contemporary audiovisual spectacles represented in the series by the dreamworlds of David Lynch and Angelo Badalamenti, and the galactic exploration of Christopher Nolan, Hans Zimmer, Denis Villeneuve and Jóhann Jóhannsson. Blade Runner / Blade Runner 2049 • Logan / Mad Max: Fury Road • Wall-E / Interstellar • Blue Velvet / Mulholland Drive • Batman / Purple Rain • Pina 3D / Samsara • Total Recall / Terminator 2 • There Will Be Blood / No Country For Old Men • Close Encounters Of The Third Kind 4K / Jaws 4K • The Matrix 4K / The Fifth Element 4K • Gravity 3D / Arrival • Stop Making Sense / The Man Who Fell To Earth •
The third of the series being a format specific 70mm Film Festival: https://cinerama.com/Festival.aspx?ec=0000000017 - showcasing the benefits inherent in the resolution, scale and luminosity of the 70mm celluloid format and three-strip films. Any effort to present these works is limited globally to the handful of theaters: http://www.sprocketschool.org/wiki/List_of_70mm_film_exhibitors - with the hardware to properly screen them, and a sparsity of films shot, cut or released on the format: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_70_mm_films - Crowning the 70mm series is the newest in a line of Stanley Kubrick restorations, a project heralded by the celluloid champion: https://www.theguardian.com/film/2014/jul/31/quentin-tarantino-christopher-nolan-kodak-film - and director of contemporary action and science fiction films, Christopher Nolan: https://www.nytimes.com/2014/11/02/magazine/the-exacting-expansive-mind-of-christopher-nolan.html -
The project initiated decades before through a meeting with Ned Price, the vice president of restoration at Warner Brothers during the 1999 project of Price and his team creating a preservation interpositive from the 20 reels of the original negative. Price offered to Nolan to see the copies made of the original prints, and intrigued by what he saw, Nolan approached the studio about continuing the work to the end of recreating the 1968 celluloid theatrical release. As detailed in Variety's "Going the Analog Route to Preserve Celluloid Beauty of ‘2001: A Space Odyssey'": https://variety.com/2018/artisans/production/christopher-nolan-2001-a-space-odyssey-1202811669/ - the team at the FotoKem laboratory in Burbank then delivered the fruits to Nolan and Price of a six month process of cleaning the negative, checking and repairing splices, and removing previous imperfect work. Then they made an answer print, color-timed it by closely adhering to the original timing notes and documentation, and finally made an interpositive and an internegative for striking 70mm prints.
The team also approached the audio content with a similarly strict adherence, restoring the original six track soundtrack and adjusting levels to their original particulars, this was then exactingly transferred to the new prints. “The film is mixed in a very extreme way,” says Nolan, “There are incredible sonic peaks that are beyond anything anyone would do today.” More insight into the complexities of this process offered in New York Times' interview with the director, "Christopher Nolan’s Version of Vinyl: Unrestoring ‘2001’": https://www.nytimes.com/2018/05/11/movies/2001-a-space-odyssey-christopher-nolan-cannes.html - As Stanley Kubrick’s monolithic adaptation of Arthur C. Clarke's: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/2001:_A_Space_Odyssey_(novel) - novel has been born (yet again) for the big screen, The Guardian assembled a set of directors, special effects moguls and those who worked on the film to discuss it's legacy, "50 Years of 2001: A Space Odyssey – How Kubrick's Sci-Fi Changed the Very Form of Cinema": https://www.theguardian.com/film/2018/apr/02/50-years-of-2001-a-space-odyssey-stanley-kubrick -
Consider the film's far-reaching exploration of human possibilities and the precariousness of life in a seemingly infinite and indifferent universe, all realized through it's audacious, singular and groundbreaking production, "2001: A Space Odyssey is Still the ‘Ultimate Trip’": https://www.nytimes.com/2018/05/10/science/2001-a-space-odyssey-kubrick.html - From the sparsity of films available on the 70mm format, Cinerama has assembled a broad genre inclusive array of everything from documentaries to cinema classics by Stanley Kubrick, David Lean, and Alfred Hitchcock, to pop culture, action and special effects hits in their two week series. Tron • 2001: A Space Odyssey • Back to the Future Part II • Vertigo • The Sound of Music • Lawrence of Arabia • Baraka • Phantom Thread • E.T. The Extra-Terrestrial • Howard the Duck • Top Gun • Ghostbusters • Dunkirk • Days of Thunder • Wonder Woman • Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade • Star Trek VI: The Undiscovered Country • It's a Mad, Mad, Mad, Mad World •

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Legendarily difficult to procure, and often referred to in terms that paint it as a disastrous pileup of drugs, unbridled hubris, the complexity of foreign locations, unlimited major studio funding, and an increasingly ambitious editing process, Dennis Hopper's "The Last Movie": https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Last_Movie - has retained a status as one of the great, unseen films of its decade. The singular vision of an outsider artist who J. Hoberman succinctly refers to in his, "Dennis Hopper, Lone Horseman of the Apocalypse": https://www.villagevoice.com/2010/05/30/dennis-hopper-lone-horseman-of-the-apocalypse/ - “As an actor-director-lone horseman of the apocalypse, Hopper’s career suggests some druggy Dylan ballad with Marcel Duchamp and James Dean riding their motorcycles up Boot Hill to steal the carnations off John Wayne’s grave". Enabled by the massive cultural and financial success of "Easy Rider": https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Easy_Rider - Universal Studios selected Hopper as one of five American directors to whom they offered a one million dollar budget and the stipulation of little or no studio oversight.
Working from a script which Hopper had developed in the 1960s, the freedom and financial backing offered by Universal allowed the production to be taken to a more desirably remote location in Cuzco, Peru. Assembling a wide reaching cast of actors and musicians, many of whom personal friends of Hopper, including singer Kris Kristofferson, director Samuel Fuller, Peter Fonda, Henry Jaglom and Michelle Phillips, Hopper spent much of 1970 shooting the film under the working title "Chinchero" with cinematographer László Kovács.
Having produced what is said to be tens of hours of footage, Hopper then holed up in his home editing studio in Taos, New Mexico, working on assembling the massive body of footage into a coherent cut. Testament to the concoction of unbridled freedom, financial independence and alcohol and drug abuse in Hopper's life at the time, Lawrence Schiller and L.M. Kit Carson's "American Dreamer": https://www.filmcomment.com/article/the-american-dreamer-documentary-l-m-kit-carson/ - is a troubling window into the year of the production. It is rumored that an initial, more linear, and conventional narrative cut of the film came of this period, but was rejected by Hopper following conversations with Alejandro Jodorowsky: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Alejandro_Jodorowsky - The Chilean director and author urged Hopper to more forcefully assert the meta-narrative underpinnings of the film's premise. From this came the crafting of a more disjointed, experimentally-inclined cut which Hopper completed in the spring of 1971. Choosing to foreground the challenge to the viewer's understanding of cinematic storytelling, Hopper assembled a more arcing non-chronological structure. In this, the remaining narrative passages are often disrupted by an an array of filmmaking devices such as rough jump-edits, production sequences, and "scene missing" cards.
Critically divisive at the time of its limited release in the 1970s, represented by The New York Times' "A Gigantic Ego Trip for Dennis Hopper?": https://www.nytimes.com/1970/05/10/archives/a-gigantic-ego-trip-for-dennis-hopper-ego-trip-for-hopper.html - and Roger Ebert's scathing review: https://www.rogerebert.com/reviews/the-last-movie--chinchero-1971 - a reassessment with time and distance turns a different lens on the film's perceived incoherence, and use of avant-garde devices, that so vexed in 1971. A new contextual consideration and fascination with the "The Last Movie": http://arbelosfilms.com/distribution/films/the-last-movie/ - has been found, following the restoration by the recently launched Arbelos distribution: https://deadline.com/2018/07/the-last-movie-trailer-4k-restoration-release-date-dennis-hopper-arbelos-films-1202425030/ - The premier of the new restoration at New York's The Metrograph: http://metrograph.com/film/film/698/the-last-movie - and its first larger run of theatrical screenings at arthouse theaters like Northwest Film Forum: https://nwfilmforum.org/films/the-last-movie-dennis-hopper/ - have garnered notable press, like that seen in the Village Voice' "Dennis Hopper’s “The Last Movie” Is as Essential as Cinema Gets": https://www.villagevoice.com/2018/08/02/dennis-hoppers-the-last-movie-is-as-essential-as-cinema-gets/ - and "Dennis Hopper’s Misunderstood Masterpiece Deserves a Second Chance and Now, It’s Getting One": https://www.indiewire.com/2018/08/the-last-movie-dennis-hopper-restoration-1201990114/ -
Still maligned at the time of his death, and thought to be lost to time and the complexities of it's production, Film Comment's "Fade Out on Dennis Hopper": https://www.filmcomment.com/article/fade-out-michael-almereyda-on-dennis-hopper/ - posits "The Last Movie", as the masterpiece of this American artist and adventurer, who Manohla Dargis called, "A Madman, Perhaps; Survivor, Definitely": https://www.nytimes.com/2010/04/11/movies/11dargis.html - This singular work is best represented in this excerpt from the Museum of the Moving Image's symposium overview by Andrew Tracy: http://www.reverseshot.org/symposiums/entry/235/last_movie - "However, while the programmatic content of "The Last Movie" stays safely within the bounds of permissible dissent, its chaotic form, the wild flurry of sounds and images, reveals - after repeated viewings - a truly striking focus and discipline. It’s hard to know how the film was originally envisioned - legend has it that Hopper tore apart a coherent narrative version after an upbraiding by Alejandro Jodorowsky - but it’s possible that Hopper, boozed, bedraggled, and bedrugged as he was, began to perceive while shooting and editing his welter of footage the paradox into which he had fallen. After all, his broadside against the American legacy of greed and violence had the backing of a major American corporation, was being made by a group of hedonistic, absurdly overprivileged tourists in the Third World, and turned on the hackneyed and narcissistic symbolism of Hopper’s stuntman as Christ figure, the American naïf dying for the world’s sins. Myth again, and forever. The apocalyptic promise of Hopper’s title shuffled back into the cycle of consumption, ritual violence made routine."

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The summer issues of Sight & Sound: https://www.bfi.org.uk/news-opinion/sight-sound-magazine/july-2018-issue - and Film Comment: https://www.filmcomment.com/issue/july-august-2018/ - have landed, and with them their respective overviews of this year's Cannes Film Festival: https://www.festival-cannes.com/en/festival/ - and it's concurrent and collateral aspects. The Competition and this year's award winners: https://www.festival-cannes.com/en/festival/palmares/all-awards - works screened Out of Competition, Un Certain Regard, Cinefoundation, Special Screenings, Cannes Classics, Critics Week, and alternate festival of the Directors' Fortnight. Despite pressures from industry giants of the small screen: https://www.theguardian.com/film/2018/apr/10/cannes-film-festival-2018-netflix-feud - this year's festival was accounted for as having the strongest offerings seen in decades. The release of the program alone inspired the announcement of, "Cannes Ups its Game: The 2018 Program isn’t Resting on Any Laurels": http://www.bfi.org.uk/news-opinion/sight-sound-magazine/comment/festivals/cannes-2018-programme-launch -
with rounds of equal enthusiasm seen at it's close, "Cannes 2018 Verdict: Sombre Brilliance Wins the Day": https://www.theguardian.com/film/2018/may/18/cannes-2018-verdict-sombre-brilliance-wins-day-despite-von-trier-unwelcome-return - Detailed in overviews by The New York Times: https://www.nytimes.com/2018/05/05/movies/cannes-film-festival-highlights.html - British Film Institute: http://www.bfi.org.uk/news-opinion/sight-sound-magazine/comment/festivals/cannes-2018 - and The Guardian: https://www.theguardian.com/film/2018/may/08/cannes-2018-top-10-film-festival - with coverage in Sight & Sound's: http://www.bfi.org.uk/news-opinion/sight-sound-magazine/reviews-recommendations/cannes-film-festival-2018-award-winners - roundup and extensive representation offered by Amy Taubin's "Why Settle for Less?": https://www.filmcomment.com/article/festivals-settle-less/ - Kent Jones "Drifting Apart": https://www.filmcomment.com/article/festivals-drifting-apart/ - and Nicolas Rapold's "Trolling the Croisette": https://www.filmcomment.com/article/festivals-trolling-croisette/ - for Film Comment.
Now in it's 71st year, the 2018 program was testament to the organization's ongoing credo: https://www.festival-cannes.com/en/69-editions/history - of representing quality, continuity, innovation, and audacity in the filmmaking arts. Evolving with the times, Cannes has seen changes in format: https://www.filmcomment.com/article/cannes-2015-amy-taubin/ - context and release platforms: https://www.theguardian.com/film/2017/may/13/cannes-film-festival-takes-on-tv-digital-upstarts-netflix - while in response endeavoring to preserve their inherent mission and ethos. In the digital age there have been casualties: https://www.theguardian.com/film/2018/apr/21/netflix-vs-cannes-2018-culture-clash - in this parsing of what constitutes cinema, and how it is presented to the public. Most notably the exclusion of the legendary: http://www.nytimes.com/2014/10/29/movies/hollywood-ending-near-for-orson-welles-last-film.html - lost and finally available to view from it's protracted restoration: https://www.theguardian.com/film/2017/mar/14/netflix-restore-orson-welles-film - involved in Orson Welles, "The Other Side of the Wind": http://www.vanityfair.com/hollywood/2015/04/orson-welles-the-other-side-of-the-wind-making-of -
Other questions of inclusion and representation were tackled by this year's Cate Blanchett-led jury: https://www.festival-cannes.com/en/festival/juries/feature-films - which included a cross race, culture, and gender assembly of notable actors, directors and artists. With such names as Chang Chen, Léa Seydoux, Kristen Stewart, Khadja Nin, Denis Villeneuve, Andrey Zvyagintsev, Ava DuVernay, and Robert Guédiguia, among their numbers. The jury's realization of Cannes mission to represent quality work, regardless of it's origin: https://www.theguardian.com/film/2018/may/12/cate-blanchett-and-kristen-stewart-join-silent-womens-protest-on-cannes-red-carpet - was elucidated by its president, "Cate Blanchett States that Change Will Come to Cannes, but Not Overnight": https://www.theguardian.com/film/2018/may/08/cannes-2018-cate-blanchett-defends-festivals-failure-to-select-more-women-directors - With the awards given, further elaborating on the question of representation was made, "Jury Head Cate Blanchett on Gender, Race and Choosing the ‘Right’ Palme D’Or": https://deadline.com/2018/05/no-blood-was-shed-jury-head-cate-blanchett-on-gender-race-and-choosing-the-right-palme-dor-1202394795/ -
In the way of the selection and the award winners themselves, it was the most recent in a decades-spanning line of contemporary familial dramas that Hirokazu Kore-eda took home hist first Palme d'Or for "Shoplifters": https://www.festival-cannes.com/en/festival/films/manbiki-kazoku - While closely adhering to the form and content: https://www.bfi.org.uk/news-opinion/sight-sound-magazine/reviews-recommendations/shoplifters-hirokazu-koreeda-wonky-family-lament - of the larger body of the director's filmmography, this "Unfancied Japanese Film Took the Palme d'Or": https://www.theguardian.com/film/2018/may/19/cannes-2018-japanese-film-shoplifters-wins-palme-dor - with Blanchett adding at the awards ceremony; “The ending blew us out of the cinema”: https://www.theguardian.com/film/live/2018/may/19/cannes-film-festival-2018-palme-dor-winners-live - Arriving at the tail end of the festival, another greatly anticipated film screened with relatively little fanfare. There are few examples in recent film production history that approach the ruinous complexity that faced Terry Gilliam's "The Man Who Killed Don Quixote": https://www.festival-cannes.com/en/festival/artist/terry-gilliam - This decades-delayed adaptation of Cervantes novel survived two separate failed productions, in doing so becoming a biblical ordeal of extreme weather, wrecked sets and collapsed funding. Outliving two of the actors once cast, and the accrued colossal legal acrimony, "Terry Gilliam's Epic Journey Found a Joyous End": https://www.theguardian.com/film/2018/may/18/the-man-who-killed-don-quixote-review-cannes-2018-terry-gilliam -
From the grand heights of the Palme, to the great disappointments of the festival. Some of the least satisfying submissions of this year came from two auteurs who are known to delivered kinetic, sometimes transgressive cinema. Beyond simply activating the senses and troubling the mind, they each have contributed significantly to moving the needle forward in regard to cinema on the edge. Building on a bodies of work that are often technically groundbreaking, and occasionally astounding to perceive, Lars Von Tier was back at Cannes with "The House that Jack Built": https://www.festival-cannes.com/en/festival/films/the-house-that-jack-built - and Gaspa Noe resurfaced after the tepid: https://www.theguardian.com/film/2015/may/21/love-review-gaspar-noes-3d-porno-is-fifty-shades-of-vanilla - (yet visually engaged) "Amor", with "Climax": https://www.quinzaine-realisateurs.com/en/film/climax/ - Sadly, it appears that neither have rediscovered the strength of their respective forms.
While Noe's film didn't meet with the divisive response that his work traditionally garners, "Gaspar Noé: 'Six People Walked Out of Climax? No! I Usually Have 25%'": https://www.theguardian.com/film/2018/may/22/gaspar-noe-six-people-walked-out-of-climax-no-i-usually-have-25 - neither did reach the visceral peaks of his best and sensorial work. Von Trier has also been on a particular downward trend since attaining persona non grata at Cannes in 2011, a label which he no doubt cherishes, yet his films fail to express those past qualities worthy of controversy. While exhibiting more frisson than was seen in the flaccid "Nymphomaniac": https://www.theguardian.com/film/2014/feb/23/nymphomaniac-vol-1-11-review-mark-kermode - this newest was met with a spectrum of responses running the gamut of, "'Vomitive. Pathetic': Lars Von Trier Film Prompts Mass Walkouts at Cannes": https://www.theguardian.com/film/2018/may/15/vomitive-pathetic-lars-von-trier-film-prompts-mass-walkouts-at-cannes -
Cinema from the Chinese mainland now in it's sixth and seventh generation, had a strong showing with the return of Bi Gan after the extraordinary debut of 2016's "Kaili Blues": https://blog.adventuresinsightandsound.com/2016/06/bi-gans-debut-film-kaili-blues-at.html - Returning with "Long Day's Journey into Night": https://www.festival-cannes.com/en/festival/films/di-qiu-zui-hou-de-ye-wan - he's taken a venture into genre cinema of sorts, with an oneiric and stylized noir, where, "Long Day’s Journey into Night Follows its Own Woozy Dream Logic": http://www.bfi.org.uk/news-opinion/sight-sound-magazine/reviews-recommendations/long-day-journey-night-bi-gan-dream-logic - Sixth generation director Jia Zhang-ke has been at the spearhead of mainland cinema for over two decade now. In the long arc of his increasingly expansive art, he's built a body of work as observations on globalism, largely comprised of a mildly-surreal tangent of social realism, with an unexpected recent turn into the realm of politically conscious crime drama. As Peter Bradshaw's review details, "Ash is Purest White": https://www.festival-cannes.com/en/festival/films/jiang-hu-er-nv - falls into the general classification of the latter. Setting it apart, Zhang-ke has imbued the tale with what Bradshaw describes as a "miasma of visionary strangeness", giving a distinct glow to the film's social realist grit. Seen through the film's eerily futurist sheen: https://www.bfi.org.uk/news-opinion/sight-sound-magazine/reviews-recommendations/ash-purest-white-jia-zhangke-zhao-tao-magisterial-mob-critique - this complex romantic tragedy set within China’s crime classes is a "Chinese Gangster’s Girlfriend Saga that Burns Bright": https://www.theguardian.com/film/2018/may/11/ash-is-purest-white-review-chinese-gangsters-girlfriend-saga-burns-bright -
Of a more pure, and consistent social realist strain are the films of Wang Bing. "Dead Souls": https://www.festival-cannes.com/en/festival/films/dead-souls - may prove to be his truest account dedicated to film, and Eric Hynes' associations with the life work of Claude Lanzmann: https://www.filmcomment.com/article/make-real-evidence-life/ - aren't off the mark. Through hours of personal accounts from survivors: https://www.bfi.org.uk/news-opinion/sight-sound-magazine/reviews-recommendations/dead-souls-wang-bing-china-mao-anti-rightist-purge-survivors - Bing shines a steady light into a corner of 20th Century Chinese history; the Maoist regime's 1957 anti-Rightist campaign, in which over 3,000 men were forcibly relocated, and effectively left to die at the Gobi Desert's Jiabiangou work camp.
Upping his technical form and content, Lee Chang-dong's "Burning": https://www.festival-cannes.com/en/festival/films/burning - is a sensuously shot and musically scored mystery, taken from a Haruki Murakami short story: https://www.newyorker.com/magazine/1992/11/02/barn-burning - centering around the (sometimes hallucinatory) fixations of an obsessive love. Where it differs is that its psychological drama is set in the cultural fallout of modern consumerist Korea: https://www.bfi.org.uk/news-opinion/sight-sound-magazine/reviews-recommendations/burning-lee-chang-dong-love-triangle - with bold diversions into the pastoral and surreal, this visually gripping observation on, "Male Rage Blazes a Chilling Trail on the Korean Border": https://www.theguardian.com/film/2018/may/17/burning-review-cannes-2018-lee-chang-dong -
Also returning in strength, two of the most notable provocateurs of the world of moving pictures, returned with quintessential works. In "BlacKKKlansman": https://www.festival-cannes.com/en/festival/films/blackkklansman - Spike Lee delivers the film that Quentin Tarantino has spent a lifetime seemingly discovering that he is unqualified to make. In this sharply cutting extrapolation on historic events, Lee has assembled a raucous investigative satire of American white nationalism: https://www.bfi.org.uk/news-opinion/sight-sound-magazine/reviews-recommendations/blackkklansman-spike-lee-satire-uncloaks-white-america - All the while not obscuring the bigger picture of bigotry enduring in the current era, one can't help but watch Lee's southern period drama as "A Clanging Rebuke to the New Trump Order": https://www.theguardian.com/film/2018/may/14/blackkklansman-review-spike-lee-adam-driver-cannes-2018 -
With "Le Livre d'Image": https://www.festival-cannes.com/en/festival/films/le-livre-d-image - Jean-Luc Godard delivers another of his recent provocation of images, resonances, associations and history. From "Notre Musique" on, Godard has been making works where his relation to the art of cinema, a reckoning with European post-colonial history, and the impending end of his own existence are at points of convergence. This quest seemingly began with his late-period masterwork, 1998's "Histoire(s) du Cinéma": https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Histoire(s)_du_cin%C3%A9ma - Continuing on form, his newest is a mosaic of film clips and image fragments, his voiceover punctuated by sloganized textual excerpts, his signature unpredictable sound cues, and declamatory orchestral chords. And like the more successful of his recent experiments, "Godard's Eyeball-Frazzling Video Essay Bewilders and Delights": https://www.theguardian.com/film/2018/may/11/the-image-book-review-jean-luc-godard-cannes-2018 -
Maybe too indebted to Russian literature in the resetting of concerns and character types lifted from Chekhov and Dostoevsky, Nuri Bilge Ceylan's "Winter Sleep" still remained something to witness in its acerbic series of observations on folly: https://blog.adventuresinsightandsound.com/2014/12/nuri-bilge-ceylans-new-film-winter.html - Set against the barren austerity of the the surrounding Cappadocian Steppes, its beauty won out over the inertia that set in as the film's protagonist went, by degrees, further and further astray of the world. With "The Wild Pear Tree": https://www.festival-cannes.com/en/festival/films/ahlat-agaci - Ceylan "Contemplates a Restive Rural Homecoming": https://www.bfi.org.uk/news-opinion/sight-sound-magazine/reviews-recommendations/wild-pear-tree-nuri-bilge-ceylan-rural-homecoming - through a writer’s reluctant return to his small town origins, and in doing so, effectively tipping the balance back the other way. By setting the film's extensive series of conversational encounters against the richness of the rural Turkish landscape, he's moved his typically wry observations into the realm of a melancholic mood piece, delivering a "Delicious, Humane Tableaux": https://www.theguardian.com/film/2018/may/18/the-wild-pear-tree-review-nuri-bilge-ceylans-delicious-humane-tableaux -
Another retooling of a director's formula was seen in the dialing back of the magic realist bent of her 2014 Grand Prix-winning "The Wonders". Alice Rohrwacher's "Happy as Lazzaro": https://www.festival-cannes.com/en/festival/films/lazzaro-felice - is more unsentimental in its depiction of tobacco sharecroppers straining against the dealings of a tyrannous aristocrat. Geoff Andrew draws parallels with Ermanno Olmi’s "The Tree of Wooden Clogs" in the film's peculiarly Italian fabulism. Yet as a "Beguiling Fable of Golden, Rural Italy Trampled by Modernity": https://www.theguardian.com/film/2018/may/14/happy-as-lazzaro-review-cannes-alice-rohrwacher-wonders-tobacco-sharecroppers - it stands apart as its own "Practice in Magic Neorealism": https://www.bfi.org.uk/news-opinion/sight-sound-magazine/reviews-recommendations/happy-as-lazzaro-felice-alice-rohrwacher-magic-realism -
Begun as a concurrent, alternative festival in 1969 by the French Directors Guild in response to the events of 1968: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/May_1968_events_in_France - The Directors Fortnight celebrated its 50th Anniversary: https://www.quinzaine-realisateurs.com/en/retrospective-2018/ - retrospective. Not limited to restorations and presentations of notable works from the canon, from its inception The Quinzaine Realisateurs: https://www.rogerebert.com/cannes/cannes-2018-scorsese-honored-at-50th-directors-fortnight-rafiki-a-banned-kenyan-film-screens - has been a showcase for rising new directors working in genre, content and form on the edge of what might usually pass the master in Cannes competition: https://www.indiewire.com/2012/05/cannes-interview-10-things-you-should-know-about-new-directors-fortnight-artistic-director-edouard-waintrop-47382/ - This year's selection included standouts from Debra Granik with "Leave No Trace": https://www.quinzaine-realisateurs.com/en/film/leave-no-trace/ - Mohamed Ben Attia's "Dear Son": https://www.quinzaine-realisateurs.com/en/edition/2018/ - and the rare occasion of anime appearing during the festival, represented by Mamoru Hosoda's "Mirai": https://www.quinzaine-realisateurs.com/en/film/mirai/ -
Where's Gaspar Noe's "Climax" failed to quite deliver his expected shocks and thrills, Panos Cosmatos upped the ante with his sophomore effort, "Mandy": https://www.quinzaine-realisateurs.com/en/film/mandy/ - By taking a series of pages from the stylebooks of both Noe and Nicolas Winding Refn, wedding them to a unhinged genre vehicle overflowing with gloriously lurid cinematography and a lead actor's penchant for bombast, "'Mandy' has Nicolas Cage Wreak Revenge at the Fiery Gates of Hell": https://www.bfi.org.uk/news-opinion/sight-sound-magazine/reviews-recommendations/mandy-nicolas-cage-panos-cosmatos-80s-style-hellraiser-revenge-quest - Ratcheting up the visceral engagement to such heights, and Jóhann Jóhannsson's pounding, sensory-fraying score, "Cosmatos’s Mock-1980s Oddball Nerd Fantasy Yarn": https://www.theguardian.com/film/2018/may/14/mandy-review-nicolas-cage-gory-vengeance-thriller - deftly circumnavigates the trappings of much similar postmodern territory.
Thematically dark cinema of very different natures can be found in the filmmographies of Italy's Matteo Garrone and Japan's Ryusuke Hamaguchi. While both have issued works exploring social, political and neorealist realms, they are each inclined to brief and suggestively surreal intrusions into these same narratives. And in both, we are witness to a slow unfurling of troubling events and their coming to intersect the lives of everyday people. In the case of "Dogman": https://www.festival-cannes.com/en/festival/films/dogman - the bad-to-others comes in the form of a local thug who terrorizes everyone, breaking noses and intimidating the local businesses. Yet like much of the director's work, though it might well be bleak, it recognizes humanity when it sees it: https://www.bfi.org.uk/news-opinion/sight-sound-magazine/reviews-recommendations/dogman-matteo-garrone-grit-teeth-roman-revenger - and doesn't reject humor in doing so, "Matteo Garrone Nitpicks Gangster Insecurities with Hilarious Flair": https://www.theguardian.com/film/2018/may/17/dogman-review-matteo-garrone -
Less assertively cynical than his last offering, the epic duration plumbing of suburban malaise that was "Happy Hour", Hamaguchi's earnest romance "Asako I & II": https://www.festival-cannes.com/en/festival/films/netemo-sametemo - switches things up by adapting Tomoka Shibasaki's tale of mirror-image obsession. A inversion of cinema's "male gaze" and its depiction of passively enigmatic female beauty, here things are reversed in a counter-"Vertigo": https://www.theguardian.com/film/2018/may/15/asako-i-ii-review-japanese-romcom-flips-gaze-ryusuke-hamaguchi - By turns nostalgic, romantic and melancholic, with the gentlest of heightened conceits: https://www.bfi.org.uk/news-opinion/sight-sound-magazine/reviews-recommendations/asako-i-ii-mournful-hamaguchi-ryusuke-mournful-drama - it remains beguiling and mysterious through to the conclusion. As is the case of the original "Masterful Look at Loneliness and Malaise in Tokyo": https://www.japantimes.co.jp/culture/2017/06/10/books/book-reviews/spring-garden-masterful-look-loneliness-malaise-tokyo/ - by this Akutagawa Prize-winning author.
From the once Soviet Union come two films of varied dystopic visions. Historic and more measured in its study, Pawel Pawlikowski's "Cold War": https://www.festival-cannes.com/en/festival/films/zimna-wojna-cold-war - is an episodic and elliptical tale of imprisonment and escape, as the film's central love affair falls to the opposing forces of state constrictions and the freedom of a foreign country. Much in the way of 2013's "Ida", Pawlikowski’s "Seductive Tale of Love in An Age of Borders": https://www.bfi.org.uk/news-opinion/sight-sound-magazine/reviews-recommendations/pawel-pawlikowski-cold-war-zemna-wojna-love-borders - is rendered in a gorgeous monochrome cinematography that vibrantly depicts a whirlwind love between two musicians and eventual succumbing to the gravitational pull of cynicism, exhaustion and state-sponsored fear: https://www.theguardian.com/film/2018/may/11/cold-war-review-wounded-love-and-state-sponsored-fear-in-1940s-poland -
It is not only a prolific time for Russian director, Sergei Loznitsa, but a highly qualitative one. Exactly a year ago his "A Gentle Creature" premiered in Cannes, followed by this past February's documentary "Victory Day" at the Berlin International Film Festival, and now at Cannes once again he's back with "Donbass": https://www.festival-cannes.com/en/festival/films/donbass - His films have always entangled themselves with the complexities of the historic and cultural aftershocks of post-Soviet Russia. But this new stretch has a forcefully dark, absurdist strain to it, that of a voyeur to the tragedy of a history witnessed. In light of the aggressions of Putin's Russia, both at home, toward the Republic of Ukraine, and wider eastern Europe, Loznitsa is not without lack of material in this regard: https://www.filmcomment.com/blog/cannes-interview-sergei-loznitsa-donbass/ - Channeling the current state of Orwellian unreality which dominates much of the region, and events lifted from real world news, Sergei Loznitsa’s feverish procession of scenes watches as a, "Freakish Fake-news Kaleidoscope of Ukrainian Civil War": https://www.theguardian.com/film/2018/may/10/donbass-review-cannes-2018-sergei-loznitsa
Cannes Film Festival + Cinema Miscellanea
Cannes Film Festival + Cinema Miscellanea
blog.adventuresinsightandsound.com

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A central pillar of President Trump’s politics is a sustained assault on the free press. Journalists are not referred to as fellow Americans, but rather “the enemy of the people”: https://www.nytimes.com/2018/08/14/business/media/trump-news-media-editorials.html - Whereas this month the Senate passed a resolution, Reaffirming The Vital and Indispensable Role The Free Press Serves: https://www.schatz.senate.gov/imo/media/doc/FPR%2008-15-18.pdf - in support of press freedoms, which included an elementary and academic affirmation, “that the press is not the enemy of the people.” In their "Newspaper Calls for War of Words Against Trump Media Attacks": https://www.bostonglobe.com/business/2018/08/10/newspaper-calls-for-war-words-against-trump-media-attacks/DG5ijE6VSuWCEsvi8lKHBL/story.html - The Boston Globe asked editorial boards from around the country – liberal and conservative, large and small – to join them in addressing this fundamental threat to Democracy in their own words: https://www.bostonglobe.com/opinion/editorials/2018/08/15/editorial/Kt0NFFonrxqBI6NqqennvL/story.html - Of the editorials now published by over 300 papers of the nation, a handful have stood out for their precision. Amid the abundance, I advocate finding those that speak to your own persuasions and political inclination. As The Atlantic affirms, "The Freedom of the Press Is Yours: It is Your Right as an American to Read What You Will, to Write What You Think, and to Publish What You Believe": https://www.theatlantic.com/politics/archive/2018/08/the-freedom-of-the-press-is-yours/567655/ -
All of this making now the ideal time to return to Sarah Smarsh's piece for The Guardian of last year, "What Donald Trump will Have to Accept: Without Journalism, There is No America": https://www.theguardian.com/media/2016/nov/18/american-media-journalism-donald-trump - "As of today, we are living under the protections of the first amendment to the constitution of the United States. Freedom of the press is a part of that amendment – one of the great markers of this democracy and a privilege people in totalitarian countries are persecuted without. Two years ago, I spent a December evening with fellow journalists and PEN America, which protects free expression worldwide, writing holiday cards of solidarity to imprisoned journalists around the world behind held behind bars, possibly tortured and raped, for attempting to reveal corruption, genocide and other injustices that American citizens would be more vulnerable to without an unencumbered press."
"Trump and the Republicans he is bringing to Washington do not care for a free press, as has been documented for the past year. The president-elect has denied credentials to those who dared to report unflattering facts; called Fox News host Megyn Kelly a bimbo after she described his misogyny; promised to dismantle free-speech laws for the purpose of filing libel suits; and named Stephen Bannon, executive chairman of extremist propagandist Breitbart News: https://www.theguardian.com/media/2016/nov/15/breitbart-news-alt-right-stephen-bannon-trump-administration - as a senior White House strategist. He has plainly admired the government of Russia, where so many journalists have been murdered: https://cpj.org/killed/europe/russia/ - in the recent years that they hold a national day of remembrance."
"Such casual malice toward the people’s watchdog endangers every American, regardless of their political stripes. How journalists should organize and fight in such an environment is a long and uncertain discussion. What is clear is that, even if they get every story right from now to eternity, they fight a losing battle without the trust and support of the American public."
"To regain that trust, a good place to start would be media literacy outreach efforts in public schools, local organizations and other community spaces. Ideally, civics education would be fully restored in the public school system, with a robust unit on media literacy. Every American should be equipped to discern news from propaganda and all the gray areas in between in the digital 21st century; understand the laws that threatened and protected Amy Goodman of Democracy Now in covering the Standing Rock protests this fall: https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2016/sep/12/amy-goodman-arrest-warrant-north-dakota-oil-pipeline-protest - and identify the various economic models and interests served in media."
"Speaking of media literacy, it is worth noting that the coastal “media elite” were never meant to unearth stories across the middle of this country – those states ignored by presidential campaigns and therefore by the press corps that follow them. Someone else used to do that. Local newspapers."
"The digital era, in which media sources are decentralized but not necessarily diversified, presents a new sort of danger. With half of us on Fox News, half of us on CNN or MSNBC, and nearly all of us on self-constructed pipelines of tweets and Facebook posts by like-minded individuals, we not only receive different information – we perceive different realities: https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2016/nov/16/facebook-bias-bubble-us-election-conservative-liberal-news-feed -
"For much of the country, less and less of that perception comes from journalists who’ve stepped foot in our own states, let alone our towns or counties. Due to the economic withering of local news outlets, most of the journalists I trained with at the turn of the millennium have been laid off or fled to industries with more stable incomes."
"Much was lost in that decline, but perhaps more was gained in the opportunity we now have to rebuild local journalism in a way that not only rectifies geographical imbalances but includes voices from previously unrepresented communities; harnesses technology to engage and include previously passive readers; and makes the stories of previously isolated people available not just to themselves but to the world."
"Media consumers might consider turning off those news sources that have proved themselves both easily manipulated and compromised by their own ideologies. Trump knew the most powerful journalists would have a blind spot, whether willful or subconscious, to his supporters in their own economic class. His media mastery is such that he might create a TV network under the Trump brand, a veritable state television station with a profit-based mission."
"Trump’s cynical media vision might have a blind spot itself. A ruthless businessman perhaps wouldn’t understand why most people become reporters – the vast majority of whom are the least elite bunch of rogues you ever saw wearing wrinkled Dockers from JC Penney. It sure as hell isn’t for the money or the glamour, both of which are in short supply in most newsrooms. It is for the word (or image or sound) that informs, reveals, bears witness. It is for eschewing the human habit of making assumptions in order to dwell in questions, which rarely lead to infallible answers and always point toward universal human stories."
"Undemocratic ideas will soon control all three branches of government. But, so long as the bill of rights remains intact and implemented, they will never seize the fourth estate. The passion that fuels a journalism career, or that fuels respect for and support of the profession, is the same passion that will work to keep this country out of the shadows for the next four years. Just shy of a week after the election – the American Civil Liberties Union tweeted that it was stronger than it had ever been, in its 100-year history, after an influx of new supporters."
"Yes, national, corporate, mainstream media got this election wrong and even played a leading part in its unfolding. But if you care about democracy, the sensible reaction to this fact is not to vilify all media or, as at least one Trump voter suggested with a T-shirt, 'hang a journalist'."
"The sensible reaction, as a media consumer, is to demand better of it and to do better by it. To acknowledge that your participation shapes it – each click begets more clickbait or, if you choose, something better. To be aware of its sources and funders. To pay at least as much for its best, fairest, most civically responsible outlets as you pay for coffee. And, above all, to understand the necessity of its freedom."
"Without liberty, there is no true journalism."
"Without journalism, there is no America."
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