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The Auteurs Daily: Bright Lights

A new issue of Bright Lights Film Journal slipped online over the weekend


The Auteurs DailyLolita

[Update: The full news feed is now going on @theauteursdaily (RSS feed); major stories (a few a day) and The Auteurs-specific announcements, etc, will still be happening @theauteurs (RSS) - in short: @theauteursdaily = high volume, "Shorts"-style; @theauteurs = just the need-to-know's.]

A new issue of Bright Lights Film Journal slipped online over the weekend as if it were quietly challenging the entire month of August to come up with something bigger and better. The best introduction to what all's in Issue 65 is editor Gary Morris's, so I'll leave that to him, but BL does prove itself again to be one of the most engaging and important film publications around. Each issue offers a collection one would be tempted to describe as "eclectic," but that would be off. "Eclectic" implies a haphazardness possibly tinged with illness; instead, BL suggests a personality with an enviably wide range of interests, a cinephilic friend who calls on his deep academic background only when absolutely necessary, who can be a bit cheeky, particularly when talking about new movies, and who doesn't mind admitting that, late at night, he thinks scary thoughts.

Anne Thompson has moved her Thompson on Hollywood blog to indieWIRE and is already at it, full force. In a recent entry, she spots signs of Hollywood playing it safe: Steven Spielberg's Harvey, Ridley Scott's Alien prequel, Rob Marshall "circling" the next Pirates of the Caribbean installment, Ron Howard's adaptation of a Robert Ludlam novel (The Parsifal Mosiac) and so on.

The current issue of the New Yorker will have to last us two weeks. For Anthony Lane, "Cold Souls has its flaws..., but [Paul] Giamatti's anxious mien and unspectacular shamblings have never been better deployed." Tad Friend chats with Leslie Mann and Richard Brody revisits John Cassavetes's Husbands.

New York's David Edelstein on Hayao Miyazaki's Ponyo: "[I]n some ways its simplicity lets you see the director's greatness more clearly." And "Julie & Julia is full of holes, but you don't even care when [Meryl] Streep is onscreen." Related: Michael Pollan (In Defense of Food: An Eater's Manifesto and The Omnivore's Dilemma) measures Julia Child's impact on cooking in America (and on TV) for the New York Times Magazine, while, in the paper, Brooks Barnes tells the story behind the movie. That's only the half of it, too; Nikki Finke is not alone in wondering about the NYT's blanket coverage of this movie.

Image: Stanley Kubrick directs Sue Lyon in Lolita, about which Erich Kuersten writes in the new Bright Lights: "What was once sophisticatedly scandalous had become [by the 90s] cartoonish. But even there, Kubrick was ahead of his time, for now we've come back again full circle."

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