- Takao Saito, the Japanese cinematographer and frequent collaborator with Akira Kurosawa, has passed away at the age of 85.
- Best known for his turn in Alfred Hitchcock's The Birds, actor Rod Taylor has passed away at the age of 84.
- It started out as a very casual conversation on Twitter (and eventually Facebook), but Kevin B. Lee has put together an impressive poll of the best films of the decade at its halfway mark, with nearly 300 people factoring in to the results. Here's a peep at the top 10, and you can click here to see all the details:
1. The Tree of Life (103 votes)
2. Certified Copy (91 votes)
3. The Master (76 votes)
4. Margaret (68 votes)
5. Holy Motors (66 votes)
6. A Separation (64 votes)
7. Under the Skin (61 votes)
8. Inside Llewyn Davis (59 votes)
9. Uncle Boonmee Who Can Recall His Past Lives (45 votes)
10. Boyhood (44 votes)
- Above: Jean-Luc Godard's thank you message to the National Society of Film Critics for naming his film the best of the year.
- On his blog, Jonathan Rosenbaum has shared his essay from Cinema Guild's Blu-Ray release of Tsai Ming-Liang's Stray Dogs:
"As a rule, continuity editing is maintained in Stray Dogs, but only within sequences and not between them, And the status of individual sequences in relation to what we regard as “real” or plausible or consistent with the others is chiefly a matter of how we choose to arrange them all to compose a coherent narrative of our own."
- Above: we're fans of Joel Potrykus, and particularly his latest film, Buzzard, which has a new trailer. If you missed it, Celluloid Liberation Front has a piece on the film right here on Notebook.
- The team behind Gone Girl are reuniting to remake Alfred Hitchcock's Strangers on a Train...on a plane.
- Above: preview a track off of John Carpenter's forthcoming "Lost Themes".
- For Movie Morlocks, R. Emmet Sweeney writes on the Museum of the Moving Image’s First Look series:
"Movies are hard to see. That statement feels false, what with films all around you, available to stream at a keystroke. But distribution is a weird, half-hazard thing, a pseudo-science that pretends to know which products will sell and which not, a presumptive mind-reading of an imaginary audience that doesn’t get to choose for themselves. So many of the most challenging and strange films get left behind, mere rumors in festival reports and critic bull sessions. This is why festivals like the Museum of the Moving Image’s First Look series are so essential."
- Above: one of several extraordinary photographs by Douglas Kirkland, via everyday_i_show.
- The nominations for this year's BAFTAs have been announced.
- The folks at Reverse Shot let off some steam and take their least favorite films of 2014 to task.
- In J. Hoberman's home video column for The New York Times, he writes on Michel Gondry's Mood Indigo, and Eric Rohmer's A Summer's Tale.
- Above: *swoon*, it's Kyle MacLachlan back as Special Agent Dale Cooper, via our official Tumblr.