Daily | Bujalski, Swanberg, Antonioni

Computer Chess

‘Computer Chess’

“When I was in Berlin in February, I had journalists from all over the world asking me about mumblecore,” Andrew Bujalski tells Eric Hynes in the New York Times, where Eric notes that the “signature representatives” of mumblecore, which many credit Bujalski with launching eleven years ago with Funny Ha Ha, “have decidedly moved on. Now a 36-year-old husband and new father, Mr. Bujalski has taken a left turn with his formally adventurous and eccentric new period piece, Computer Chess, which opens Wednesday. So, too, has his fellow festival fixture Joe Swanberg. His Drinking Buddies is a spiffily produced romantic comedy that, after his 14 flagrantly noncommercial features, showcases stars like Olivia Wilde and Anna Kendrick. (The film opens July 25 on video on demand and Aug. 23 in theaters.)” And both films are great fun, albeit, of course, in radically different ways. Meantime, for Film Comment, Bujalski selects and comments on a few works made on video when the medium was still in its infancy.

The Reader‘s J.R. Jones suggests that “for people who love Chicago, [Haskell Wexler’s Medium Cool (1969)] may be most valuable as a cultural document, recording a much younger city in the midst of a turbulent summer. Inspired by Studs Terkel’s book Division Street: America, Wexler set out to integrate real Chicagoans into the action, often letting them improvise their own dialogue; some of that footage wound up on the cutting-room floor, but the voices that remain are strong, honest, and still challenging even after 46 years.”

The San Francisco Bay Guardian‘s Cheryl Eddy talks with Ryan Coogler about Fruitvale Station.

The AV Club discusses the best films of 2013—so far.

Mia Farrow and Philip Roth neither watched nor live-tweeted last night’s premiere of Sharknado. Jason Diamond explains at Flavorwire.



New York. A new restoration of L’Avventura (1960) will be playing at Film Forum through July 25. For the New Yorker‘s Richard Brody, after the pivotal point in the film’s narrative, “the movie latches onto its big theme, which Antonioni had been working out from the time of his first feature, Story of a Love Affair, from 1950: the formation and deformation of the modern mind through a media-infused industrial aesthetic.” For three more takes, see David Fear, Joshua Rothkopf and Keith Uhlich in Time Out New York. [Update: L’Avventura‘s also on at Cinefamily in Los Angeles.]

J. Hoberman at Artinfo on the films of Mathías Piñeiro, currently screening as part of Latinbeat: “Set in a vague urban bohemian milieu, they evoke Jacques Rivette or early Raúl Ruiz in their elaborate, literary conspiracy games and Eric Rohmer in their fondness for talkative young people, mainly women. To act is to act in this world. ‘Instead of rooting stories in the soil of the real,’ Dennis Lim writes in the current Artforum, Piñeiro’s films ’emphasize the alchemical properties of fiction.'” For more on Piñeiro’s Viola, see Nicolas Rapold in the L.

Japan Cuts 2013 runs through July 21, and Aaron Hillis (Voice) and Twitch previews the highlights.

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