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Rushes: New Jia Zhangke, Christopher Doyle Discusses “Chungking Express,” Simba vs. Kimba

This week’s essential news, articles, sounds, videos and more from the film world.
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Jia Zhangke on the set of So Close to My Land
  • The latest from Jia Zhangke film is entitled So Close to My Land, an eight-chapter documentary that follows "esteemed Chinese writers Jia Pingwa, Yu Hua and Liang Hong" across four provinces. Jia also notes that the film is "an Eisenstein-styled film, with great subjective influence."
  • Russian Ark filmmaker Aleksandr Sokurov has announced that he is shutting down his film foundation Primer Inotnatsii, which supports young Russian filmmakers, in response to pressure from Russia's culture ministry and a lack of funding. The organization helped producer Kantemir Balagov's Closeness, which MUBI premiered in May.
  • The first trailer for Takashi Miike's First Love, which follows an orphaned boxer caught in a turf war between Japanese yakuza and Chinese gangs. Read editor Daniel Kasman's review of the film here.
  • Legendary choreographer Yuen Woo-ping, best known in the West for his work on The Matrix and Crouching Tiger: Hidden Dragon, was the subject of a tribute at this year's New York Asian Film Festival. The festival has provided this invaluable masterclass with Yuen, in which he discusses his discovery of stars like Jackie Chan and Donnie Yen, and his career-long shift from a traditional to a modern fighting style.
  • The self-directed Light of My Life starring Casey Affleck depicts a father trying to raise his daughter in a post-apocalyptic world where the "female population" has been destroyed.
Chungking Express
  • A new interview with Christopher Doyle delves into the process of the cinematographer's work on Wong Kar-wai's Chungking Express (which celebrates its 25th anniversary this month), as well as the film's currently ongoing restoration process.
  • The Village Voice has re-published J. Hoberman's brilliant review of the 1994 The Lion King, then "a newly minted corporate mythos," which predicts an encroaching onslaught of Disney trademarks.
  • Speaking of The Lion King, Pete Keeley returns to a debate worth returning to in light of the remake: The film's uncanny similarities to Osamu Tezuka's 1960s anime series, Kimba the White Lion.
  • As mentioned in last week's Rushes, Cecelia Condit's horror-musical short Possibly in Michigan has a new, burgeoning audience: Teenagers on the video-sharing app, TikTok. Vice investigates why Condit's spooky tales resonate so much with a young fanbase.
  • In an interview with Vulture, television critic Emily Nussbaum discusses her new book I Like to Watch: Arguing My Way Through the TV Revolution, gender in Buffy: The Vampire Slayer, and our changing relationship to watching television.
  • Bilge Ebiri provides an overview of motion smoothing technology, from what it is and why it came to be, to the ongoing protests against it by filmmakers.
  • Carlos Valladares looks into the "meaty, healthy range" of Burt Lancaster's body throughout his filmography, which displays "a three-dimensionality to his body that threatens to break the impossible line dividing his space and ours, as well as the line between theater and film."
  • Beatrice Loayza reviews Lulu Wang's The Farewell and its place in conversation with other films about the Chinese immigrant experience by Ang Lee, Edward Yang, and Wayne Wang.
  • An interview with the great John Carpenter, who was presented with the Carrosse d'Or (Golden Coach), the lifetime achievement award of the Directors' Fortnight in Cannes.
  • Neil Young's tremendous soundtrack to Jim Jarmusch's Dead Man has been reissued on vinyl, and is available here.
  • Damon Herriman as two Mansons!

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