I've expressed dismay many times here at TFE that what the internet mostly wants is rumors and future film nonsense rather than discussion of actual films that exist and that people can see. (Bet you ANYTHING that the word count on Star Wars "stand-alone" films that don't exist and won't for years is higher than the word count on Ex Machina which does exist and is amazingly worth discussing.) The Daily Beast has a current piece about rumors that seem to have erupted from actual facts (Marvel cancelling some series, toys, and retconning some characters including The Scarlet Witch -- all things that have always happened before billion dollar movies were involved and also within series where no billion dollar movies are involved). The piece suggests that Marvel is sabotaging Fox's efforts on X-Men and Fantastic Four. It's frankly a bizarre claim, even though it is more than obviously true that Marvel would want the rights back to these properties.
Say "animated sex", and two things immediately leap to mind. If you’'e hung up on American cinema, it's the self-consciously edgy and smutty underground animation of the '70s - Fritz the Cat and its heirs. Or, God help you, maybe it's the legendary (and, to be fair, very much exaggerated) cult of anime tentacle porn out of Japan. We are not going to talk about either one of those things.
Though in fairness, the particular animated sex scene I have in mind isn't much less disturbing than mythological Japanese fetish porn. It's the second segment of Jan Švankmajer's 1982 short Dimensions of Dialogue, one of the most important works of Czechoslovakian animation. I promise that Czechoslovakian animation is definitely a thing.
The whole movie is available online, and it’s pretty NSFW even for totally non-sexual reasons. If you have a reasonably strong stomach for grotesque manipulations of synthetic bodies in stop-motion animation, I'd beg you to watch the whole thing, but the sex is only in the second part starting at 5:02, "Passionate Dialogue". Or "Dialog vášnivý" to the Czech speakers in the crowd.
Anne Marie's Sofia Coppola chapter of 'Women's Pictures' has reached its finale. Next month: Agnes Varda!
Sofia Coppola month has been enlightening. I don't know that we've tackled a director as polarizing as Ms. Coppola on Women's Pictures to date, and I've enjoyed reading the varied reactions readers have had to her films. For that reason, and because of the more prominent autobiographical inspirations, the final movie of Sofia Coppola month is Somewhere, the often-overlooked 2010 dramedy.
Somewhere distills the themes Coppola has employed throughout her career, putting them in service of a story that rings clearly from the writer/director's personal experience. After all, before she was Sofia Coppola, Academy Award winning screenwriter and respected director, she was Sofia Coppola, daughter of famed auteur Francis Ford Coppola. She had a firsthand account of how major celebrity can free a person and also trap him, and those contradictions resonate through her entire ouvre. In Somewhere, Coppola gives us a glimpse into the monotony of celebrity that is mostly devoid of easy sentiment. Whether you want that glimpse or not determines how likely you are to enjoy slow-paced movies about wealthy stars having existential crises. To bastardize a line from an old classic: with (films about) the rich and mighty, always a little patience.
<---LOOK at this amazing Blue Velvet poster making the web rounds. [Hat tip MNPP]. I so love painted movie posters and it's only 7 bucks. Click on photo to go to the artist's site.
El Desio Pedro Almodóvar blogging from the set of Silencio (!!) with two photos
Dissolve Today in Ballsiest News: Nate Parker (Beyond the Lights) who we just celebrated as a Born in '79 Hottie is directing and starring in a feature biopic of Nat Turner, a slave who led a bloody massacre against white captors in 1831. But here's the ballsy part: they're naming it Birth of a Nation (!)
Vanity Fair Don Hertzfeldt (World of Tomorrow) says being an artist should be your full time job. Hear hear! Start donating to creatives you believe in or purchasing their work. Life is not free.
MUBI "Psychopolitical Realism in Mad Max: Fury Road" - provocative piece
Far Flung Correspondents looks at Fury Road's use of Giussepe Verdi's "Dies Irae" from his Requiem mass
Decider pays tribute to Under the Skin, now streaming on Amazon, which we are confident people will continue to discover and be floored by
Comics Alliance Chris Pine may be the new Steve Trevor for the new Wonder Woman film
AV Club celebrates Steve Martin's ear worm "King Tut" - have I ever inadequately expressed to you how much I love Steve Martin? If not, know that it's muchly.
Vulture passes out fun awards to the movies that screened at Cannes including "Most Likely to Make You Hug Your Cab Driver" (The Palme winner Dheepan) and "Hottest Movie With No Sex" (Maryland ....starring Matthias Schoenaerts naturally. He can't help himself)
MNPP Jude Law accessorizes with chest hair at the Spy premiere
Boy Culture Little Darling Tatum O'Neal is now dating women
Forbes the current gender quake in the film world - female directors want to work but it's not a meritocracy
Towleroad Taye Diggs is set to play Hedwig on Broadway (such an amazing/unexpected choice!) and TMZ reporters continue to be awful but sometimes they're hounding obnoxiousness gets wonderful things like Taye Diggs deadpan monologue about being a drag queen and prostitute in high school come out. He's kidding but what else are you going to do in a situation like this?
Time Out NY Why Kristin Chenoweth deserves the Tony
Theater Mania "Taystee" from OITNB (Danielle Brooks) is joining the revival of The Color Purple on Broadway. She'll play Oprah's old role "Sofia"
Showtune to Go...
A little Cheno. If you ever have the chance to see her live (on stage or in concert) do not hesitate. Spend the money. Simply put: She's one of the best live performers of all time. She ALWAYS delivers (I've seen her several times) and in a really big way, too - spontaneous, disciplined, great sounding, and just hilarious.
1979 is our "Year of the Month" and this post was way way too much fun to research. Before the main course of the Supporting Actress Smackdown (pushed to June 7th), let's marinate a little in the year that was.
BEST MOVIES ACCORDING TO...
Oscar: Kramer vs Kramer*, All That Jazz, Apocalypse Now, Breaking Away, and Norma Rae were the best pictures nominees but they also loved La Cage Aux Folles, The China Syndrome, Manhattan, Being There and The Black Stallion
Golden Globe: (drama) Kramer vs Kramer*, Apocalypse Now, The China Syndrome, Manhattan and Norma Rae (comedy) Breaking Away*, Being There, Hair, The Rose, and 10
Cannes: Apocalypse Now AND All That Jazz (Glenn discussed this odd consecutive Oscar-adjacent business)
Box Office: 1) Kramer vs. Kramer 2) The Amityville Horror 3) Rocky II 4) Apocalypse Now 5) Star Trek: The Motion Picture 6) Alien 7) "10" 8) The Jerk 9) Moonraker 10) The Muppet Movie
Gene Siskel: 1) Hair 2) Kramer vs Kramer 3) The Deer Hunter 4) Breaking Away 5) Manhattan 6) The Marriage of Maria Braun 7) Nosferatu 8) The Onion Field 9) Time After Time 10) The China Syndrome
Roger Ebert: 1) Apocalypse Now 2) Breaking Away 3) The Deer Hunter 4) The Marriage of Maria Braun 5) Hair 6) Saint Jack 7) Kramer vs Kramer 8) The China Syndrome 9) Nosferatu 10) "10"
List-Mania continues with music hits, debut characters, new toys, and adorable "born in '79" people & things after the jump...