When a little low budget documentary Catfish played at the 2010 Sundance Film Festival, who would’ve thought the indie would change popular culture in the way that it has? Not only was the film was a critical and commercial success, but it spawned an MTV reality series that has been one of those shows that I rush to watch every week it airs — its surprisingly great. But thats the point, Catfish surprises in every way possible. The title of the film, which comes from an almost-completely unrelated story delivered late in the film, has been adopted in popular culture and now Merriam-Webster Dictionary is making it official — the dictionary adds Catfish definition inspired by the movie and television show.
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Dave, Devindra, and Peter Sciretta discuss the culture of line-waiting at Comic-Con, Spike Lee’s new Kickstarter project, the achievements of Netflix, and whether 2015 will lead to the end of cinema as we know it. Be sure to read up on why there will be not be a Dredd sequel, The Daily Beast’s profile on Laverne Cox, and what Spike Lee’s Kickstarter can teach us all.
ALSO: It’s been pointed out that the plot of the Oldboy remake could actually be the same as the Park Chan-Wook original. We shall reflect on this.
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Posted on Friday, December 21st, 2012 by Angie Han
Today’s TV Bits comes with the caveat that none of this applies if the world actually ends on 12/21/12. After the jump:
- Black Dynamite, Catfish, The League, and Psych get renewed
- Cinemax sets a January premiere date for Alan Ball‘s Banshee
- Game of Thrones gets more screen time and its own beer
- Jason Schwartzman and Jenny Slate head to Parks & Rec
- Rose McGowan is Once Upon a Time‘s young Barbara Hershey
- Amazon Studios orders pilots from Kristen Schaal, Garry Trudeau, and more
- The premiere episode of NBC’s 1600 Penn hits the web
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It’s been nearly a year since we heard anything new about MTV’s “reality show” based on the documentary Catfish. (Some might question the “documentary” tag for the feature, as the veracity of its story has been in question since its Sundance premiere.) Now we’ve got some details that let us know just what we’re in for. I assume that most people that want to see the original doc have done so, and that spoilers for it are therefore not too big a deal, but we’ll put all the info on the show after the break, just to be safe. Read More »
A couple months ago we got an odd report: MTV has been developing a TV show based on the buzzed-about indie documentary Catfish. (Or ‘documentary,’ depending on how you view the film’s position vis a vis honesty.)
At the time all we knew was that unspecified Catfish creators, presumably Henry Joost and Ariel Schulman, were among those working on the show. Now we’ve got more info, and it sounds — not surprisingly — like a watered-down ‘reality’ dating show about internet-based relationships. Read More »
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This week, Dave, Devindra, and Adam praise the second season of Justified, get psyched about the next Will Smith film, come to terms with the fact that the Akira remake will be completely unrecognizable, and ponder the future of the Paranormal Activity series. Special guest Jeff Cannata joins us from the Totally Rad Show.
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Posted on Thursday, March 31st, 2011 by David Chen
[The following contains spoilers for the film Catfish]
For those of you who liked Catfish, but thought, “I’d really like to see this sort of twisted thing on a weekly basis!” there’s some good news for you: MTV is developing a reality show based on the film. Hit the jump for more details. Read More »
For an awards show that purports to honor outstanding achievements in film, the Academy Awards seem oddly drawn to the familiar. The movies with the most nominations at this year’s Oscar race, for example, are The King’s Speech and True Grit — two films with a great deal of critical acclaim backing them, but ones that are decidely lacking in any grand ambition beyond presenting a traditional, accessible story. The Oscars, it would appear, favor the classically good to the unconventionally good, leaving the latter out to be forgotten in a sea of mediocrity and predictability. This isn’t a shocking revelation; the Academy Awards have always favored films that adhere to a certain standard of genre filmmaking. A heart-rending, war-based drama about one man’s uplifting struggle against adversity will always win out over the truly innovative, progressive, subversive films of our times. Read More »
This Week in DVD & Blu-ray is a column that compiles all the latest info regarding new DVD and Blu-ray releases, sales, and exclusive deals from stores including Target, Best Buy and Fry’s.
Good narrative-driven documentaries are hard to come by, for reasons that should be fairly obvious. It’s one thing to be a talented filmmaker; it’s another entirely to be lucky one. If we’re meant to believe that Catfish is 100% authentic—and we are—then directors Henry Joost and Ariel Schulman are the luckiest talented filmmakers in the world. Because the story featured here is unbelievably perfect. (Keyword being “unbelievably”.) To what extent Catfish is real or staged remains unclear, but thematically, it would be awfully fitting if it were all a ruse. Just as the troubling and deeply compelling Facebook-enabled internet relationship that unfolds over the course of the film proves itself too good to be true, so too it seems is the reality that these filmmakers are presenting to us. And that, in many ways, is what the film is all about: the steadily blurring line between reality and fiction. There’s a whole lot more to it than that, certainly, but delving into other aspects of the film would require spoiling plot details that I dare not give away. So I’ll just say this: Real or fake, it doesn’t matter. This is a story that’s timely, meaningful, and incredibly well told. It deserves to be seen and discussed.
Available on Blu-ray? Yes.
Notable Extras: DVD & Blu-ray – Secrets Revealed: Exclusive Interview with the Filmmakers.
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