The numbering system of the multi-lingual journal La Furia Umana can be a little confusing. There are, so far, three issues on paper, but LFU 17, the online version has just gone up. In English, you’ll find three essays from the Joseph Losey dossier—Sudarshan Ramani on The Big Night (1951), Catherine Grant on Modesty Blaise (1966), and Christopher Small on The Go-Between (1970)—and Michael Guarneri‘s conversation with Lav Diaz.
“The sprawling, obsessive career of Fritz Lang” is the perfect title for Noel Murray‘s impressive survey for the Dissolve: “It isn’t just that he rarely made a film that wasn’t worth watching; it’s that even while working within the parameters of studio assignments, Lang was able to portray society as he saw it: governed by corrupt, hypocritical institutions that defy individual will.”
“The world of direct-to-video action constitutes its own separate sub-industry, with its own stars and big-name auteurs,” writes Ignatiy Vishnevetsky at the AV Club: “Behind such unpromising titles as Undisputed III: Redemption, 12 Rounds 2: Reloaded, Universal Soldier: Regeneration, U.S. Seals II, and The Marine 3: Homefront is some of the finest action filmmaking of the past decade—and, in some cases, some of the finest filmmaking, period.”
“Having endured a summer of existential threats to the planet—zombie hordes, alien invaders, the usual stuff—moviegoers can now settle in for an autumn of more intimately scaled ordeals,” writes A.O. Scott in the New York Times. “Survival is the theme of the season, or at least of Captain Phillips, All Is Lost, and Gravity.”
Matching quotations and titles, Kent Jones has put together three strong lists at Criterion that also happen to make for great reading. In “JLG’s Criterion,” for example, we’re reminded that Godard‘s argued that Ben Hecht and Josef von Sternberg‘s Underworld (1927) is better than Howard Hawks’s Scarface (1932). The two other lists: Andrew Sarris and Otis Ferguson.
Speaking of Hawks. While The Complete Howard Hawks rolls on at New York‘s Museum of the Moving Image through November 10, Moving Image Source has posted R. Emmet Sweeney‘s essay on World War I in The Dawn Patrol (1930, screening tomorrow) and The Road to Glory (1936, screening on November 3). And at the L, Miriam Bale recommends catching Hatari! (1962) on Sunday.
The Japan Society’s tribute to the late Donald Richie begins this evening with a screening of Akira Kurosawa’s High and Low (1963). Dan Sullivan at the L: “A by-the-numbers police procedural, a critique of capitalist ruthlessness and, toward the end, a breathlessly jazzy chase through a network of Tokyo hospitals, flophouses and rock clubs: this film is, however schizophrenic and disjointed, all these things.”
Derek Boshier in Pop Goes the Easel from Light Industry.
Films by Derek Boshier will be screening tomorrow evening at Light Industry, which’ll present a Fluxus TV program on Tuesday.
The 22nd Philadelphia Film Festival is on through October 27, and Genevieve Valentine has an overview of the highlights in the Weekly, while the City Paper‘s gathered all its coverage under one tag.
Los Angeles. The UCLA Film & Television Archive pays tribute to its late curator Charles Hopkins “and his invaluable contributions to the Archive by recreating a modest sampling of his ‘Archive Treasures’ programs.” Today through November 24.
On Sunday, the Filmforum presents Happiness Is A Warm Projector: Select work from Experiments in Cinema.
Mark Schilling in the Japan Times: “The Tokyo International Film Festival, now in its 26th edition, has had its share of detractors, dissing it for everything from competition lineups of major festival castoffs (no longer true since TIFF stopped insisting on world premieres) to a Special Screening section that is essentially a PR showcase for upcoming commercial releases (still and forever the case). And yet foreign critics, bloggers and fans keep turning up at TIFF for at least one reason: The festival offers a rare chance to see large numbers of new and not so new Japanese films with English subtitles, in better-than-average screening conditions.” TIFF 2013 opens today and runs through October 25, and you can follow the paper’s coverage here.
The Lusanne Underground Film & Music Festival is on through Sunday.
In other news. AFI FEST has added Centerpiece Galas such as John Wells’s August: Osage County and the 3D version of Bernardo Bertolucci’s The Last Emperor (1987) and Special Screenings, including Spike Jonze’s Her and Asghar Farhadi’s The Past, to its 2013 lineup, running from November 7 through 14.
“DOC NYC, the Gotham documentary festival that launched in 2010, has lined up a broad slate with 11 world premieres, including the debut of Michel Gondry’s doc Is the Man Who Is Tall Happy? An Animated Conversation with Noam Chomsky.” Gordon Cox has more in Variety. DOC NYC 2013 runs from November 14 through 21.
In the works. Arnaud Desplechin is currently at work on his first film for television, an adaptation of Alexander Ostrovsky’s 1871 play The Forest. Théo Ribeton reports (in French) for Les Inrocks.
“After exploring the depths of space, Gravity screenwriter Jonas Cuaron is ready to look to the deepest parts of the ocean, re-teaming with Warner Bros. on the Atlantis-set film, The Lost City, reports Variety‘s Justin Kroll.
Obit. “Ed Lauter, a gritty but taciturn character actor whose massive list of film and TV credits include Leaving Las Vegas, The Artist, and Trouble With the Curve, died at his home in West Hollywood of mesothelioma on Wednesday,” reports Carmel Dagan for Variety. “He was 74.” More from Joe Leydon.
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