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Entries in The Fly (4)

Tuesday
Nov122013

Long Live the New Flesh: David Cronenberg's Exhibition

It’s Amir here, reporting on a couple of films I saw at the David Cronenberg exhibition currently held at TIFF Bell Lightbox in Toronto. As the biggest Canadian director working in cinema today, the master of body horror is held in high esteem in national circles. This comprehensive tribute to his body of work is a tremendous showcase for a filmmaker whose work has done a major service to the Canadian film industry over the past three decades.  

Running alongside the exhibition that includes all things Cronenberg like film memorabilia, set props and a life-size mugwump, Long Live the Flesh also hosts screenings of the director’s films with lectures and Q&A sessions. I had the chance to attend two of these events: a screening of Naked Lunch introduced by David Cronenberg and his longtime producing partner Jeremy Thomas (Oscar winner for The Last Emperor) and my first big screen experience with his seminal science fiction film, The Fly, which was followed by a Q&A with the film’s Oscar-winning make-up artist Stephan Dupuis. Both conversations were illuminating though the films didn’t quite affect me in equal measure.

Naked Lunch, adapted from the William S. Burroughs novel of the same name, is one of the more personal projects in Cronenberg’s canon, born of his passion for the writer’s work. Cronenberg described the film as both a dream-come-true for allowing him the opportunity to adapt one of his personal favorite novels, but also one that made him extremely anxious as he felt the necessity to get the Burroughsian elements just right. Asked if adapting the supposedly unfilmable novel was a difficult task, Cronenberg referred to the project as one of the easiest screenplays he’s written for the way Burroughs’ prose and his dialogue transfers itself directly to the screen.

Click to read more ...

Monday
Nov212011

"baby, you are going to miss that link"

Please tell me how to feel about the proposed Before Sunset (2004) sequel. I don't mean to shirk my duties as an "opinion maker" *snort* but sometimes I just don't have one. A definitive opinion, I mean. See, when the magical Sunset was first announced it sounded like an iffy idea at best and a terrible idea at worst chasing such a fleeting wisp of enchantment like Before Sunrise (1995), one that purposely left the future up to our collective or, rather, individual imagination.

But then Before Sunset arrived and it turned out that a second encounter with Jesse and Celine was not just a good idea, but a great one. It was as if the stars and the Richard Linklater, the writer/director, had not just matured nine years in the interim but that they're maturity combined had tripled that depth of their real time spell-casting. What an incredible film. But if a third film were to triple the depth and power of the second, we would have to count it among the greatest films of all time and what are the chances of that happening? 

Do you want to know what happened to Jesse & Celine or are you more than content to imagine for yourself what came after the fade out?

Links!
fourfour "the diva chain" love it. 
The Playlist awww, damnit. No The Fly sequel for David Cronenberg after all.
AV Club on the new muppet "Walter".  
Rope of Silicon talks to Michel Hazanavicius on Tati, Chaplin and The Artist. Can you believe he's never seen The Thin Man?!
The Wrap Weird News Of Day Alert: Rocky is being musicalized. I've always thought there was great crossover between boxing fetishists and musical theater lovers... uhhhh
The Awl Mary & Natasha are all "!!!!!" on all things The Twilight Saga Breaking Dawn Part 1 "I CANNOT EVEN" myself but maybe not in the same way. 

Finally... Hollywood Elsewhere reveals a big "No" on Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close screenings for NBR and NYFCC awards voters. Stephen Daldry's latest just won't be ready by their crazy-early deadlines (November 28th and 29th respectively) It is a bit ridiculous that people are trying to vote on "best of the year" in November. But, then again, it's kind of ridiculous that so many movies don't want to show themselves until December. Lots of magazines have deadlines for "best of year" pieces that have always required long lead looks. November expectations for December offerings are nothing new behind the scenes.

Sunday
Oct302011

Oscar Horrors: Be Impressed. Be Very Impressed with The Fly's makeup

Team Film Experience is celebrating the rare Oscar nominated and winning contributions to horror films. Today Craig buzzes in with the latest edition of Oscar Horrors.

Here Lies... the remnants of the Brundlefly that Chris Walas and Stephen Dupuis (who went on to win the Best Makeup Oscar) lovingly crafted for David Cronenberg’s 1986 re-masterpiece The Fly. I don’t think they were there at the ceremony to collect it but they had it teleported to them within seconds of their names being read out.

As we know from the film, Jeff Goldblum becomes attached to a pesky, common housefly at a genetic level: he metamorphoses in a major way. Like, bummer. It was Walas and Dupuis’ job to make this as grotesquely memorable as possible. It’s fair to say they succeeded.

Walas – whose company, ‘Chris Walas, Inc.’, received first credit at the end of the film – went on to direct the sequel (which Dupuis also worked on) three years later. The makeup was definitely on par – dare I suggest slightly better – with other 1980s horror face- and game-changers The Thing, The Elephant Man and An American Werewolf in London. It was designed backwards – from full-on diseased Brundlemess at the end to light touch-up with some Max Factor at the start – and roughly created in eight stages. In accordance with this, and Goldblum’s fate, I’ll stage my Fly makeup celebration in bits, beginning from just after Goldblum teleported...

Stage One: Jeff has some increased strength thanks to the insect genes fused irreversibly with his cells. He’s full of beans and nigh-on always up for a spot of sexytime with a curiously indifferent Geena Davis. His idea of foreplay is to strip down and perform a few snazzy gymnastic moves on a horizontal bar like he’s trying out for the Olympics. Geena looks bored but straddles Jeff anyway.

Brundle-to-fly count: Jeff is roughly, I’d say, between 79 and 99% pure Brundle.

Makeup Check: There’s some light sweating from all the showing off/, so Jeff’s probably been given a once-over with a gentle covering of antiperspirant foundation; Geena has an emergency rouging because she looked a peaky. Measle-like blemishes and some protruding prickles on the shoulder blades mean a de-glistening and a bristle snip for Jeff.

Stages Two through Five after the jump. [Spoiler: He's fucked!]

Click to read more ...

Thursday
Sep152011

The Girl With the Drive-By Linkings

Film School Rejects 33 things we learned from David Cronenberg's commentary on The Fly (1986)
Slant Ed Gonzalez unleashes his Prime Time Emmy predictions
Wow Report a funny run in with young actor Logan Lerman
Awards Daily Sasha Stone (aka David Fincher's #1 Fan*) loves loves loves the early footage of The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo

 

And while we're on the subject have you seen the fun Muppets parody of it's "feel bad" trailer?

Alt Screen on the Gus Van Sant retrospective at MOMI
IndieWire on the director of Norwegian Oscar submission Happy Happy, Anne Sewitsky
Antagony & Ecstasy travels back in time to the gender-flipping anxiety of Mr Mom (1983)
Pink is the New Blog Madonna unleashing a Truth or Dare perfume next year. The Brand ever expands... and if that reminds one person to check out Truth or Dare, it's done the world a service. Best music doc evah.
IndieWire in non-news news Tom Ford has his A Single Man follow up planned but has no intention to make it in the next couple of years ??? I post this only as a reminder of what passes for news on the future-obsessed blogosphere. Let's discuss films that actually exists! Anyone? Anyone? ;) 


Broadway Blog No Way! A Meryl Streep interview from 1977. "I think she's going to be the next Carole Lombard" HEE. Her laugh and breathy intakes are exactly the same 31 years ago. Now go read what Broadway Blog has to say about her.
Cinema Blend more trouble for Netflix. This worries me so. Nobody should wish death on DVD services since Netflix had such a better selection than most services and any service that has more films is good for film buffs. The scarcity of older films is so scary.

Drive I Said
My New Plaid Pants recorded a Q&A with Drive's director Nicolas Winding Refn for you. Go watch it if you got a spare 37 minutes.
Self Styled Siren on Drive. I haven't read this yet because I haven't yet written my review and you shouldn't either unless you've seen the film. But if you have The Siren is always worth a read.

Just for fun
Business Pundit interesting map of the USA that renames states as foreign countries with similar GDP. 

*I mean this in the most endearing way because David Fincher is the man.