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.

Trailers

Trailering The Hateful Eight from Tarantino

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

Watch the first trailer for Quentin Tarantino’s  Roadshow-like 70mm Civil War western opening Christmas Day. Read more

Retrofitting Pan for the Harry Potter Generation

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

Director Joe Wright appeared with Pan newcomer Levi Miller last week at LA’s London Hotel and showed clips and explained how he’s reworked the J.M. Barrie classic. Read more

4 Directors Get Animated About The Prophet

Posted on by Bill Desowitz in Animation, Below the Line, Books, Crafts, Movies, Tech, Trailers, VFX | Leave a comment

The acclaimed Gkids release, Kahlil Gibran’s The Prophet, produced by Salma Hayek and overseen by Roger Allers, offers a who’s who of animation directors for what I call a philosophical Fantasia: Tomm Moore (Song of the Sea), Joan Gratz (Mona Lisa Descending a Staircase), Bill Plympton (Cheatin’), Nina Paley (Sita Sings the Blues), Joann Sfar (The Rabbi’s Cat), Paul and Gaetan Brizzi (“Firebird Suite” in Fantasia 2000), Michal Socha (Chick), and Mohammed Harib (Freej) Read more

Going Silent with Shaun the Sheep Movie

Posted on by Bill Desowitz in Animation, Below the Line, Crafts, Movies, Music, Sound, stop-motion, Tech, Trailers, VFX | Leave a comment

With Shaun the Sheep Movie, Aardman’s back doing what it does best with the purest form of stop-motion and British whimsy. Summer boredom turns into a wild adventure from the farm to the Big City, as Aardman takes the hit series to the big screen, helmed by Mark Burton (a scribe on the Oscar-winning Wallace and Gromit Curse of the Were-Rabbit) and Richard (Golly) Starzak (Creature Comforts series 2). And best of all: “It’s an adult film you can take your kids to.”  I spoke to Starzak, who worked on the series, about adapting Shaun into a feature. Read more

Mission: Impossible — Rogue Nation as Glam Noir

Posted on by Bill Desowitz in Below the Line, Cinematography, How They Did It, Movies, previs, Tech, Trailers, VFX, Virtual Production | Leave a comment

Tom Cruise and writer/director Christopher McQuarrie not only up the M:I franchise with smarter espionage and more thrilling action, but also break down the entire spy game as a cat and mouse between two rogue warriors: Cruise’s Ethan Hunt and Sean Harris’ Solomon Lane. That’s what happens when you pair the daredevil superstar with the master of the doppelganger shell game, which made it a lot more creative for the indie-spirited cinematographer Robert Elswit, who last worked on Nightcrawler and Inherent Vice. Read more

10 Blu-rays for Summer Viewing

Posted on by Bill Desowitz in Below the Line, Blu-ray, Clips, Crafts, Home Entertainment, Movies, Music, Oscar, Tech, Trailers | Leave a comment

Looking for some great classics to purchase? Here are 10 notable releases this year that all look stunning. Read more

Trailering SPECTRE: The Author of Pain

Posted on by Bill Desowitz in Below the Line, Costume, Crafts, James Bond, Movies, Music, previs, Tech, Trailers, VFX, Virtual Production | Leave a comment

Judging from the explosive new SPECTRE trailer, the film not only continues the two-part Skyfall journey into James Bond’s upbringing but also links the Daniel Craig era by proclaiming that Christoph Waltz’s Franz Oberhauser represents a Machiavellian puppetmaster: “It’s me, James, the author of all your pain,” he sneers (wearing, incidentally, the signature Nehru jacket associated with Ernst Stavro Blofeld from the ’60s). So isn’t the cat pretty much out of the bag? Read more

Trailering The Good Dinosaur from Pixar

Posted on by Bill Desowitz in Animation, Cinematography, Crafts, Movies, previs, Production Design, Sound, Tech, Trailers, VFX, Virtual Production | Leave a comment

Watch the full trailer for The Good Dinosaur (Nov. 25), Pixar’s version of a True-Life Adventure. Read more

M. Night Shyamalan on The Visit as His Comeback

Posted on by Bill Desowitz in Below the Line, Events, Movies, Tech, Trailers, VFX | Leave a comment

Is The Visit M. Night Shyamalan’s comeback film? He certainly thinks so. “It’s a contained movie and I love contained movies,” he told me at Comic-Con. “The posters on my wall are Invasion of the Body Snatchers, Diabolique, 12 Angry Men.  It’s part of a deep aesthetic philosophy that I have that the film needs to be incomplete. ‘Is she good? Is she evil?’ There’s passive entertainment and it’s all over the place. But we contribute just a little bit to every great [movie].” Read more

Trailering The Revenant from Iñárritu

Posted on by Bill Desowitz in Below the Line, Cinematography, Oscar, Tech, Trailers, VFX, Virtual Production | Leave a comment

Watch Leonardo DiCaprio battle Tom Hardy in The Revenant, Alejandro G. Iñárritu’s follow-up to his Oscar-winning Birdman. Read more