Getting More Immersed with Indiewire


  The Penske Media purchase of Indiewire has resulted in an expansion of my role as crafts and awards season contributor.  Beginning this week, I begin Emmy coverage of below-the-line contenders along with my usual Oscar season crafts reporting, working closely

Immersed in Blu-ray: Hitchcock and Bogart


The WB Archive Collection gets Hitch and Bogie on Blu-ray and they've never looked better for home viewing. In Kent Jones' indispensable doc, Hitchcock/Truffaut, he reminds us that Truffaut was on a mission to correct misconceptions about Hitch as a lightweight

Immersed in Books: Farber on Film


For the first time, the complete writings of film critic Manny Farber is available from Library of America, edited by Robert Polito (Savage Art: A Biography of Jim Thompson). Manny Farber (1917-2008) was the first modernist film critic to write like a modernist.

Music

Trailering New Gatsby

Posted on by Bill Desowitz in 3-D, Below the Line, Books, Movies, Music, Tech, Trailers, VFX, Virtual Production | Leave a comment

The latest trailer for Baz Luhrmann’s The Great Gatsby (May 10) makes it look like a Jazz Age Romeo + Juliet, with the hot sounds of Beyonce, Andre 3000, Lana Del Ray, and Florence + The Machine with lots of help from rapper and exec producer Jay-Z.

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Immersed in Blu-ray: Life of Pi

Posted on by Bill Desowitz in 3-D, Animation, Below the Line, Blu-ray, Cinematography, Clips, Home Entertainment, Movies, Music, Oscar, previs, Tech, VFX, Virtual Production | Leave a comment

Ang Lee’s multiple Oscar-winning Life of Pi goes Blu (Fox Home Ent.) and looks spectacular. Even viewed flat, I’m still entranced by the spirituality of the storytelling and the seduction of the imagery. And the 7.1 DTS-HD Master Audio offers a thrilling soundscape. It truly is the 2001 of our time. Read more

Wachowski’s Jupiter Ascending Set for Summer 2014

Posted on by Bill Desowitz in Below the Line, Cinematography, Movies, Music, previs, Production Design, Tech, VFX, Virtual Production | Leave a comment

The Wachowski’s next movie, Jupiter Ascending, has just landed a July 25, 2014 release date from Warner Bros., which means another smart, genre-bending experience from Andy and Lana, who are obviously unfazed by the lackluster box office response to Cloud Atlas. Read more

Immersed in Blu-ray: Easter Parade

Posted on by Bill Desowitz in Blu-ray, Clips, Movies, Music | Leave a comment

Easter Parade comes to Blu-ray for its 65th anniversary from Warner Home Video looking its Technicolor finest and sounding superior in DTS-HD Master Audio Mono, as Judy Garland and Fred Astaire pair off nicely for their first and only time. Read more

Immersed in Blu-ray: Cabaret

Posted on by Bill Desowitz in Blu-ray, Cinematography, Clips, Home Entertainment, Movies, Music, Oscar, Tech | Leave a comment

Before Les Mis, there was Cabaret (1972), which redefined the musical and is now available on Blu-ray from Warner Home Video. There is no existing negative, so Warner MPI did the best it could with an IP, even repairing a vertical scratch that extends for a reel. The result is dazzling. It’s dark and dense yet warm in keeping with Geoffrey Unsworth’s alluring look and the original Technicolor dye transfer finish.  The 5.1 DTS-HD Master Audio will have you believing you’re in the Kit Kat Klub. Read more

Life of Pi, Brave Earn BAFTA Honors

Posted on by Bill Desowitz in 3-D, Animation, Below the Line, Cinematography, Costume, Editing, Events, James Bond, Movies, Music, Production Design, Shorts, Sound, Tech, VFX, Virtual Production | Leave a comment

While Argo and Ben Affleck unsurprisingly took the top prizes for best film and director today at the BAFTA Awards in London,  Pixar’s Scottish-flavored Brave won for best animated feature and Life of Pi for VFX  (Bill Westenhofer, Guillaume Rocheron, Erik-Jan De Boer). Life of Pi’s Claudio Miranda also scored the cinematography award; The Making of Longbird and Swimmer earned honors for best animated and live-action short, respectively. Read more

Trailering Inside Llewyn Davis

Posted on by Bill Desowitz in Below the Line, Cinematography, Movies, Music, Trailers | Leave a comment

The Coen brothers, Joel and Ethan, return with something very different: Inside Llewyn Davis, a witty yet angst-ridden look back at the ’60s Greenwich Village folk scene, and the first trailer has a definite Bob Dylan vibe with “Farewell” playing throughout and a soft, surreal look from French cinematographer Bruno Delbonnel (Amélie, Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince, Dark Shadows). Read more

SIGGRAPH 2013 Call for Submissions

Posted on by Bill Desowitz in 3-D, Animation, Education, Events, Music, performance capture, previs, Shorts, Tech, VFX, Videogames, Virtual Production | Leave a comment

SIGGRAPH 2013 is coming to Anaheim July 21-25 for its 40th year and is asking for your submissions. Read more

Clipping Lincoln: An American Journey

Posted on by Bill Desowitz in Below the Line, Books, Cinematography, Clips, Costume, Editing, Movies, Music, Oscar, Production Design, Tech | Leave a comment

A new 20-minute behind the scenes special about Steven Spielberg’s Lincoln is available online. It was released on Apple iTunes and will air Sunday on KCBS at 9:00 am (PT). It’s an informative snapshot of Spielberg’s lifelong fascination with the 16th President and the making of the Oscar front-runner for Best Picture. Read more

Animation Mentor Launches AMP Studio Pipeline

Posted on by Bill Desowitz in 3-D, Animation, Education, Music, Shorts, Tech, VFX, Virtual Production | Leave a comment

Animation Mentor is taking a more holistic approach to its venerable online school of animation and VFX with the creation of the AMP studio production pipeline along with the addition of a VFX curriculum and restructured animation program. After consulting with animation and VFX studios, it was decided to better train students in more of a hands-on, battle tested environment to better prepare them for professional careers. Read more