on criticism

Frequently Asked Question: What the hell is a “gay movie” anyway?

After reading BFI’s LGBT list, responding to it, and running up against some of the contradictions and assumptions in the conceptualizations of both, I think it’s about time I answered one question, at least for the purpose of this blog, and at least for myself: what is a gay movie? If you’ve read my own list of significant …

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The 30 Best [Euro-Gringo, Establishment-Cinephile] LGBT Films of All Time?

It’s more than a little weird to me that although over 100 programmers, critics and filmmakers voted on the 30 Best LGBT Films of All Time, there’s not a surprise on it. I appreciate the inclusion of Portrait of Jason and Genet’s Un chant d’amour — the latter still seems radical to me —  but Carol, …

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Richard Brody gets finally cut

I’ve been railing a lot on Twitter about how so many popular, mainstream film critics sound just like marketers. The most egregious and ubiquitous examples of these sorts of adverb-dominated ad-copy can be discovered just by randomly picking a “review” of The Force Awakens, a teenage-boy movie that’s being received with such sated gratitude that you’d think …

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a grappling lesson

A long time ago in another blog, in a critique I wrote dissing Salon’s Stephanie Zacharek’s rather retarded and amateurish misviewing of the Dardenne Bros’ radical and shattering The Son, I suggested that filmmakers could learn a lot fromthe film’s shooting style: A floating, frantic, obsessive hand-held camera that followed rather than lead, than observed …

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critical response: No Country For Old Men

Jim Emerson over on the scanners blog has chosen not to approve one of my comments. [Actually, my comment was relegated to the junk folder, as Jim explains in a comment on this post. It has since been approved and responded to. Apologies for jumping to conclusions. – Rick] He approved an earlier one in which I suggested that he’d hedged …

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