Stanley Kubrick: A Life in Pictures (2001)is a documentary about the personal and artistic life of Stanley Kubrick. Narrated by Tom Cruise, the film was directed by his brother in law and long-time assistant Jan Harlan, featuring interviews of many actors from Kubrick’s films as well as other noted directors like Spielberg, Scorsese, Woody Allen. The entire thing is available on YouTube:Read More
Once in a while there comes a story so incredulous to be true that the fact it is indeed a true story only makes this more incredulous.
“Searching for Sugar Man (2012)” directed by Malik Bendjelloul tells the true story of two South Africans searching for their musical hero Sixto Rodriguez, whom they’ve idolized since the 1970s.
Rodriguez is a gifted Mexican American folk singer from Detroit. He was discovered by a producer from Sussex in the late 1960s. As described by the producer the first encounter held place on a misty night in a misty bar, Rodriguez was singing facing the wall, hiding behind the whirl of smoke, long hair and sunglasses. He was considered an incredible talent on par with that of Bob Dylan, and he would have a bright career ahead.Read More
Roman Polanski’s life is so polarizing that the downs touch the deepest bottom of darkness and the ups reach some of the highest achievements many filmmakers could only dream to touch if only the fringe. Now recognized as a master of film making, the content of his movies is rarely the center of discussion of his career. Most attention is fixated on the incident of 1977 when Polanski fled the US to France the night before the verdict of his unlawful sex with an underage girl. Despite the victim publicly forgiving Polanski and the judge of the case generally being shunned too unlawfully brash on the director, Polanski was arrested at the request of U.S. authorities while in Switzerland to accept a life time achievement award.
Laurent Bouzereau’s Roman Polanski: A Film Memoir (2011) is a documentary filmed while Polanski was under house arrest in Switzerland, in which Polanski simply conversed and recited the dramatic incidents of his life to his lifelong friend Andrew Braunsberg, who’s also a co-producer of the documentary.Read More
Getting the first film to be distributed is the most challenging obstacle for any aspiring filmmaker. Many submit their work to countless festivals in the hope to catch the eyes of the distributors only to return in disappointment. Some either sell out or starve.
IndieFlix set out to bring balance to the force by curating a library of work by independent filmmakers via the internet into your browser, Xbox, Hulu and Roku. Found by filmmakers, IndieFlix is a membership-based streaming service that helps translate artistic vision into commercial success without the compromises common in works distributed through the traditional distribution pipeline.
Kubrickian has teamed up with IndieFlix to give away 10 two-months subscriptions to 10 lucky winners. Read on for the details!Read More
The Iron Man is one of the more exciting superhero franchises due to not only Robert Downey‘s offbeat performance as the egocentric billionaire Tony Stark, but also the movie adaptions are more adult-oriented unlike other recent superhero movies which are usually designed for a younger generation. To put the Iron Man “Trilogy” into perspective, the first Iron Man is an adventure movie about the making of the Iron Man, the second movie follows Tony Stark on the way to mature as the protector of the free world, and the third installment is about, well, I am not quite sure after watching Iron Man 3 from the cinema.
This time Shane Black took over the director’s seat (giving Jon Favreau more screen time as Happy the goofy guard). The story picks up after the apocalyptic alien invasion taken place in New York. Tony Stark is having an anxiety issue from the realisation he is just a man in a tin suit without any real superpower of his superhero contemporaries. He spends days and night in his basement improving the Iron Man technology, neglecting Pepper (Gwyneth Paltrow) the main person he strives to protect.Read More
Roger Ebert passed away on April 4th, 2013 at the age of 70. Fighting cancer for over ten years, losing his lower jaw as a result after a life-saving surgery, Ebert is active as a film critic for Chicago Sun-Times since 1967 until the end of his life. He wrote 306 movie reviews alone last year. He was the first film critic to win the Pulitzer Prize for Criticism in 1975. He wrote with an simplicity that explained why he hated or liked a movie in an elegant clarity.Read More
Stanley Kubrick’s “The Shining” is an enigmatic film that puzzled the critics and moviegoers upon its release, and slowly gained critical praise over the years. Now considered a masterpiece of its genre and moviemaking, “The Shining” is recently given another critical look due to a goodhearted documentary called “Room 237”. The title refers to an haunted room in the Overlook hotel.
Directed by Rodney Ascher, “Room 237″ consists of conversation with five interviewees. Each interviewee has spent years looking for the hidden messages in Kubrick’s film, and each has developed a highly personalised theory to explain the film.
The movie is not a documentary in the strictest sense. Ascher does not make further comments on the proposed theories, but simply present them as is. Some ideas are so outrageous that they earn some good laughs in the theatre including an idea that “The Shining” is Kubrick’s sly way to admit his involvement in faking the moon landing footage.
The evidence? The distance between the Earth and Moon is 237,000 miles, and the haunted hotel room is numbered 237 (originally 217, a change made by Kubrick). However, a quick Google search revealed that the distance is actually 238,900 miles. Want more? “Room No. 237″ can be arranged as “Moon Room 237″ (though 2 letters short.) You decide.Read More
Very few films transcend the form of the medium and challenge the viewers with big ideas on a big canvas. “Lawrence of Arabia (1962)” is one of these rare films that needs to be seen on a big screen. I attended a special screening of the restored version of David Lean’s epic. By the end of the 4 hours screening (including a fifteen-minutes intermission), I was awed by the experience.
The film depicts the strange life of T.E. Lawrence, a flamboyant and quirky British military officer who was instrumental in uniting and leading the Arabs to defeat the Turks during the World War I. Lawrence is portrayed by the enigmatic Peter O’Toole, an unknown actor then with a strangely handsome face and lanky feature.
The plot is sparse despite its running time. Lawrence is a misfit British intelligence stationed in Cairo. He is ordered by his captain to travel into the desert, meet with Prince Faisal (Alec Guinness), and find out if he will side with the Britons against the Turks. Instead of following the order and carry out an otherwise simple assignment, Lawrence leads fifty of Faisal’s men across a deadly desert and takes down Aqaba, an important port crucial to the British supplies.
Along the journey he is joined by Sherif Ali (Omar Sharif) and Auda Abu Tayi (Anthony Quinn), leader of a powerful desert tribe. Lawrence has a vision of an independent Arabian state despite the fact that the Britons have long intended to colonize Arabia. He leads the Arabs with his vision, taking down Damascus from the Turks toward the end.Read More
Wong Kar Wai is arguably the most important auteur from Hong Kong, so the anticipation is ridiculously high for his new film The Grandmasters, a new biopic of Bruce Lee’s master – Yip Man (yes, it is spelled this way, not Ip Man). Wong has made some of the best films ever coming from Hong Kong including Chungking Express, Happy Together, and the Cannes-winning In the Mood of Love. His best work depicts mostly lost souls and doomed romance in the urban setting of Hong Kong. One must be curious how Wong can pull off an action-packed biopic, that is the farthest end of Wong’s spectrum.Read More
Faust (1926) is F. W. Murnau last German movie before he moved to Hollywood for good. It was made between the famous Nosferatu, the horror masterpiece that defines the genre, and Sunrise, the last masterpiece of the silent era. It is a loose adaptation of Goethe’s play, which is also based on several variation of this classic German folklore about a man signing off his soul to the devil in exchange for unlimited knowledge and earthly pleasure in his lifetime.Read More