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The Noteworthy: Farber’s Systems of Movement, Film Comment Selects, The Year of the Video Essay

We head into 2015 with some more reflections on the year gone by, a new issue of Cinema Comparat/ive Cinema, a Pasolini video essay, & more.

Edited by Adam Cook

  • Above: the incredible new issue of Cinema Comparat/ive Cinema is online now under the theme of "Manny Farber: Systems of Movement". Among the included pieces is a conversation on Farber between Kent Jones and Jean-Pierre Gorin. 
  • As a welcome break from the Best of 2014 overload, David Bordwell & Kristin Thompson continue their tradition of instead focusing their attention on the best films of the year...90 years ago:

"These lists are our way of calling attention to important silent films that some readers may have overlooked. In one case here we point out a largely forgotten film that deserves to be better known, in the hope that an archive will take the hint. With the proliferation of silent-film festivals, of DVD and Blu-ray releases with restored prints and supplemental material, and of TCM’s eclectic screenings of foreign and silent titles, there seems to be considerably more interest in these early classics. Herewith our choices for 1924."

  • Certainly among the most prestigious rosters in end-of-year polling, La Internacional Cinéfila has published individual ballots from esteemed contributors such as Nicole Brenez, Jonathan Rosenbaum, and Robert Koehler.

  • Above: "Pasolini Poetry and Politics" by Simon Rushton.

"Clint Eastwood’s new film is political in the highest sense of the word. He dramatizes the use and abuse of state power in the light of great philosophical ideas. These ideas illuminate the drama not as if from afar but from within; they aren’t imposed on the drama but arise spontaneously from Eastwood’s contemplation of people and events—and they find echoes throughout his career." 

  • 2014 saw the 'video essay' become a more regular practice in film criticism, and Kevin B. Lee, one of the proponents of the form, takes a look at the year's best work for Fandor in a video piece of his own (above) and a list of highlights.
  • In Sight & Sound, Robert Greene writes on the "trend" of doc/fiction hybrid work at festivals.
  • For Movie Morlocks, R. Emmet Sweeney writes about Paul Muni in Mervyn Le Roy's Hi, Nellie.
  • Jonathan Rosenbaum recommends Adrian Martin's new book, Mise en Scène and Film Style

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