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The Noteworthy: Ebert by Scorsese, Kent Jones & "The Master", Vincent Gallo Vs. The Critics

Venice, TIFF, VIFF (festival galore) + Scorsese options Ebert's memoir, Kent Jones writes on _The Master_ & some retro Gallo venom.

Edited by Adam Cook


  • You're probably already aware, but there turned out to be some controversy over the awarding of the Golden Lion in Venice last week. Apparently the jury had decided to give it, in addition to the Silver Lion and Best Actor prize, to Paul Thomas Anderson's The Master, but were told they could not give a single film three awards, resulting in their choice—arrived at through heated debate from the sound of it—to instead give it to Kim Ki-duk's Pieta.
  • TIFF is roughly at the halfway mark and David Hudson has an index of coverage for those eager to catch-up and/or follow along.
  • The full line-up for this year's Vancouver International Film Festival has been unveiled, and it's massive: chock-full of the best films on the festival circuit as well as the impressive offering of East Asian films that characterizes the 2nd biggest fest in North America.
  • Via The Chicagoist: Martin Scorsese and Steve James have acquired the rights to Roger Ebert's memoir Life Itself, and will be producing a documentary adaptation of the book.


  • In Film Comment, Kent Jones has delivered what might be the most articulate and stimulating take on The Master available, rich in contextual and analytical detail: 

    "His first three movies were, to my eyes, a little too self-contained, ravenously feeding on their own infectious energies. Beginning with Punch-Drunk Love, the build-up-and-release momentums started to shift to the inner lives of the characters, along with the relentless pursuit of trancelike ecstasy through virtuoso filmmaking shifted to the relentless pursuit of ecstasy and control by those characters, and Anderson’s intense interest in his own culture began to flower. With There Will Be Blood, he unveiled a genuine and immersive fascination with American history: every detail and choice resulted from a dogged pursuit of what it felt like to live in a lonely world of earth, stone, wood, and metal. Anderson drops us into times and places with their own rules and social structures, which we are invited to puzzle out, imparted through a careful deployment of settings, physical stances, and vocal timbres. In The Master, we are plummeted into the humming world of mid-century urban America, with its top-down organization of class, its smoothly managed department stores and amateur musicales in turn-of-the century mansions, its intimations of orgiastic abandon behind closed doors, its peculiar notions of the unconventional."
  • In his piece "The Problem with the Liberal Cinema", Richard Brody takes on a trend he's noticed in recent work by Mia Hansen-Løve, Craig Zobel, Olivier Assayas, and Ira Sachs among others:

    "With the emphasis on the external and the physical reality (little inner life or mental revelations—no fantasies, voice-overs, or hallucinatory interpolations), the filmmakers both tell a story and assert its truth, but, rather than doing so with the moral forthrightness of a foregrounded speaker bearing witness, they do so with the foreclosed self-evidence of the true believer in silent devotion. The ring of truth belongs less to the facts than to the attitudes that the filmmaker brings to them, and what these movies share is an ostensibly progressive or liberal outlook."

  • Above: We over at Vulgar Auteurism have dedicated much of the last few weeks to posting expressive images from the films of Tony Scott.
  • At Fandor, using J. Hoberman's Film After Film as a framework, Max Goldberg writes on the impact of avant-garde filmmakers on digital cinema.

  • Over 2 weeks of daily coverage already, and the Cinema Scope clan persist in their attempt to reach an inordinate amount of TIFF capsule reviews.

From the archives.

  • An incredible find: Anne Billson has posted a video on her blog—along with an accompanying post—of Vincent Gallo on a TV show titled Movietalk in which he discusses Buffalo '66 with Billson, along with Jonathan Romney, and Alexander Walker:


The NoteworthyVincent GalloNewsMartin ScorseseRoger Ebertvenice 2012VeniceTIFFTIFF 2012Vancouver International Film FestivalVancouver International Film Festival 2012Paul Thomas AndersonTony ScottSteven SpielbergFestival CoverageVideos
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