This week we’ll get to see if Independence Day: Resurgence can shake a stick at Roland Emmerich’s original 1996 blockbuster. Some early reviews from select outlets attending the Hollywood premiere indicate that the movie pretty much delivers the fun and silliness of the first one, but that’s something we’ll find out ourselves starting tomorrow evening. In the meantime, let’s take a look back at what made the original Independence Day so great with a video essay that examines just how well-crafted the screenplay is.
Watch the Independence Day video essay after the jump. Read More »
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Slow motion is used so often today that it’s easy to forget that filmmakers use it as a storytelling tool beyond making action simply look cool. A new video essay dives into the art of slow motion in film by showing how various directors like Martin Scorsese, Quentin Tarantino, Stanley Kubrick, Brian De Palma and more use the tool in different ways.
Learn about how these directors use slow motion in movies after the jump. Read More »
The Nerdwriter’s latest video “Intertextuality: Hollywood’s New Currency” takes a look at how Hollywood is using our nostalgia to play with our emotions in sequels, remakes and even original movies. Inspired by the recent record-breaking live-action Beauty and the Beast trailer (and heres a good side-by-side comparison that furthers the point of this video essay), Nerdwriter presents the idea of a new kind of currency in Hollywood movies called Intertextuality. Hit the jump to find out what Intertextuality is and watch the video essay.
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In 2010, Kirby Ferguson created a video essay called Everything is a Remix, about how it’s not just Quentin Tarantino, but every single artist (authors, musicians or filmmakers) who borrows something old to make something new. The video essay spawned a series of essays, which was later combined into an almost 40 minute long documentary (which you can watch here).
Ferguson has returned once again with a new Everything is a Remix video essay, this time focusing not just on Star Wars: The Force Awakens but also the overall storytelling career of JJ Abrams. The video isn’t just a visualization of all the complaints we’ve heard about Force Awakens being a rehash of A New Hope (we’ve already seen that before), but a serious look into the screenwriter, director and producer’s filmography, as well as an examination of how Abrams copies, transforms and combines his stories to create his art. But it also asks: is the remix method growing stale and have we hit the limits of remixing?
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Star Wars: The Force Awakens has come and gone from theaters and it now sits in our digital libraries and on our movie shelves. But unlike some of the movies we have at our disposal, we’ll be talking about this one for a long time. Now the excitement and hype has died down over Star Wars: Episode VII and the dust has settled on Jakku, allowing us to take a closer look at the film.
Recently, a video showed a side-by-side comparison of shots and sequences in The Force Awakens compared to Star Wars: A New Hope, enforcing the observation and criticism that the sequel was a copy of the original. This is something that J.J. Abrams recently addressed as intentional, and his thinking behind this decision made sense. But The Force Awakens still has its detractors, and those people should give this new video essay from Movies with Mikey a chance to help clear the air a bit so they might cut the movie a little slack. Read More »
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I was a big fan of Jean-Marc Vallée‘s last film Wild, which featured Reese Witherspoon playing the real-life author Cheryl Strayed and taking on a physically impossible task as a means of working out issues in her personal life. When I heard Vallée would be directing a similar film with Jake Gyllenhaal, I was excited at what new aspects of the human spirit the movie might illuminate.
Demolition (out today in theaters) has many of the same virtues of Wild, only with a male protagonist. Both films are shot beautifully and have some of the best editing I’ve seen, using cuts in footage not just to convey the passage of time, but also to establish mood, and to explain a character’s mindset. On a technical, they are exceptionally executed.
Unfortunately, I found Demolition ultimately amounted to less than the sum of its parts. Hit the jump for my brief video review.
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Posted on Wednesday, March 23rd, 2016 by David Chen
Nearly three years after Man of Steel, Zack Snyder is back with Batman v. Superman: Dawn of Justice, an ambitious film that not only attempts to play out the aftermath of the attack on Metropolis in the last movie, but also set up Warner Bros’ DC Universe film franchise. Batman v Superman is a overlong, poorly plotted, thinly characterized, painfully dour mess, but it’s a gorgeously shot mess that has the kind of spectacle and grandeur that you’d hope for from a major big budget release.
Hit the jump to see my full video review.
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It doesn’t matter whether it’s between a radioactive spider guy hanging upside down in the rain and his childhood crush, two cowboys in the mountains, or two ballet dancers in bed, a kiss is one of the most pivotal moments that can happen in any given movie.
This display of affection has a long history that goes all the way back to early movies from inventor Thomas Edison in 1896, andn ow a new video essay dives into the 120-year history of kissing on film including some of the more controversial moments such as the first French kiss, the first kiss between two men and the first kiss between two women. Watch below! Read More »
With Star Wars: The Force Awakens just landing the biggest opening weekend of all time, it’s clear that the appeal of tales from a galaxy far, far away is still high. And since the new sequel shares quite a few story beats and similarities with the original Star Wars from 1977, there’s no better time to look back at what made one of the most iconic sequences in the movie work so well.
A new installment of The Discarded Image takes an in-depth look at the Death Star assault from Star Wars: A New Hope, taking into account the political climate of the time, technical aspects such as sound design, John Williams‘ iconic score and the change in George Lucas‘ storytelling style when compared to his previous filmmaking endeavors. Read More »