GROWING UP IS HARD TO DO: The Tribe and Me and Earl and the Dying Girl


First, a word from our sponsors. Ever wonder what a reader for a contest or agency thinks when he reads your screenplay? Check out my new e-book published on Amazon: Rantings and Ravings of a Screenplay Reader, including my series of essays, What I Learned Reading for Contests This Year, and my film reviews of 2013. Only $2.99. http://ow.ly/xN31r
and check out my Script Consultation Services: http://ow.ly/HPxKE
Warning: SPOILERS
tribeThe Tribe is a new Ukrainian film in which all the characters are deaf and speak in sign language (and not just any ole sign language, but a particular Ukrainian dialect of sign language, which means, from what I understand, that of those of you who can read western European sign language, only 20% will be able to understand it).
But as presented by writer/director Miroslav Slaboshpitsky, it is also a movie in which there are no subtitles. Which means, most of you will probably never really know exactly what anyone is saying.
In other words, The Tribe is a silent film without intertitles. The only sound, in fact, is that of the ambient kind (I can’t even recall the use of music in the background). Slaboshpitsky even exaggerates this sound of feet shuffling down corridors, body parts slamming into each other while having sex or conversations, doors creaking; one might go so far as to say that the ambient sound used here is, well, extremely ambienty.
At first, I found this to be an interesting aesthetic exercise. And people have reacted very positively to it. When I first heard about it at AFI last year, people were very excited and kept recommending it. It has won some very prestigious awards (including three at Cannes). And when I saw it in Los Angeles at the Cinefamily at the Silent Movie Theater, it was a sold out crowd on a Sunday night.
At the same time, other AFIers expressed certain doubts about the film and I fear I must be honest and say I also have some of those selfsame reservations. Continue reading

My recommendations for movie watching this week in L.A. 7/3-7/10/2015


My recommendations for movie watching this week in L.A. 7/3-7/10/2015

First, a word from our sponsors. Ever wonder what a reader for a contest or agency thinks when he reads your screenplay? Check out my e-book published on Amazon: Rantings and Ravings of a Screenplay Reader, including my series of essays, What I Learned Reading for Contests This Year. Only $2.99. http://ow.ly/xN31r,

 

And check out my script consultation services http://ow.ly/HPxKE

My recommendations for movie watching this week in L.A. 7/3-10/2015
bulworthON NETFLIX: Bulworth is a satire written by Jeremy Pikser and directed by Warren Beatty. It stars Beatty as a politician who has a kind of breakdown and hires someone to assassinate him. Until that happens, he takes on the persona of a rapper and finally does what the people would love politicians to do—tell the unvarnished truth. Well received at the time, though I think some critics thought it perhaps played it a little safe, it has Beatty’s last good performances and a sharp insight into modern day politics.
murderer livesON HULU: The Murderer Lives at Number 21 is a movie in the middle of writer/director Henri-Georges Clouzot’s career, but comes before his biggest international successes like The Raven, Wagers of Fear and Diabolique. It’s a very uncharacteristic film by the master of suspense. Co-written by Stanislas Andre-Steeman (from Andre-Steeman’s novel), it’s a mystery comedy more in line with The Thin Man than with Clouzot’s later films.
tribeSPECIAL RUN: CINEFAMILY at the SILENT MOVIE THEATER: The Tribe continues its run Continue reading