Rian Johnson

The Guardian has a regular feature called “The Film That Changed My Life“, which featured film directors talking about the movie that inspired their art. The latest edition features Brick/The Brothers Bloom director Rian Johnson talking about Federico Fellini’s 8½:
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Jason Reitman Talks Hurt Locker and District 9

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We love to hear filmmakers talking about their favorite films, great movies, or the best movies of the year. You may have noticed we’ve featured quite a bit of this on /Film over the past few years. Last night, I came across this video recorded by Roger Ebert, with writer/director Jason Reitman talking about some of the best films of the year: The Hurt Locker and District 9. It’s great to hear Reitman’s honest and gracious thoughts on both films, especially when Hurt Locker/Bigelow is being built up to be his direct competition come Oscar-time. Watch the two-minute video embedded after the jump.

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Lost showrunners Damon Lindelof and Carlton Cuse appeared on NPR to offer their DVD recommendations to Steve Inskeep. You can listen to the seven minute broadcast segement here, or listen to the entire extended 26-minute interview by clicking here.

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It’s a crazy, mixed up world and we are thankful for movies, sans The Tooth Fairy, that offer proof. Weekend Weirdness cocks its disoriented head to examine such flicks, whether it’s a new trailer for a provocative indie or an interview. In this installment: An exclusive trailer for TV Carnage‘s Let’s Work it Out and a chat with its ski-masked creator, Pinky; an equally cool chat about movies and Hollywood with The Arab Parrot, one of our favorite people and photographers out there capturing bleary eyed L.A. and N.Y.C. culture.

In college, it was unwritten law that a house party wasn’t worthy of House Party unless you woke up and stumbled past a TV turned upside down in a puddle of fluids as it resiliently played a TV Carnage DVD. Such DVDs were the new late night color test for stupid-smart wasteoids, an aughts cult sensation that arrived in the shape of legit packaging and artwork with names like Casual Fridays and A Sore For Sighted Eyes. All anyone knew, or cared to know, was that the DVDs were the obsessive, homemade works of a guy named Pinky; a person who didn’t seem to grasp “copyright” while composing and editing hundreds, if not thousands, of hours of bad TV/VHS into hilarious masterworks of sublimation.

As TV Carnage’s popularity grew, the signature ski mask of Pinky was lifted. An online search today will inform that Pinky is Derrick Beckles, the filmmaker and actor whom /Film readers might recognize from Truth Campaign commercials. One of the founders, alongside Gavin McInnes, of the irreverent Brooklyn site, Street Boners and TV Carnage, Beckles recently directed a music video for the song, “No You Don’t” by the band Islands. It just so happens to star TV Carnage mega-hearter Michael Cera. With his latest DVD, Let’s Work It Out, due mid-January, TV Carnage is going full-cardio. Imagine the neon sweat from ’80s work-out videos by celebs ranging from John Travolta to O.J. Murderer blasted into a hall of mirrors, sucked into a syringe, and then stabbed into your brain’s abdomen. Beckles chatted with /Film and exclusively gave us the first trailer. It’s all splattered below for your weekend enjoyment.

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Quentin Tarantino’s Top 8 Movies of 2009

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The Hollywood Reporter had a chance to ask Quentin Tarantino about his favorite films of 2009, and the filmmaker responded with the following eight movies…

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Yesterday we posted a video of Quentin Tarantino talking about the top 20 films that have been released since he became a filmmaker. Today we offer a follow-up, thanks to Entertainment Weekly, in which Tarantino lists 20 movies, and posters, that you’ve got to see.

It’s a weird list, as there isn’t an exact explanation of what he’s rating – the films or the posters. One thing is for sure, he likes the movies, he loves the posters, and chances are, you haven’t seen ’em (which gives you a good excuse to seek them out). Of course, some classics are included, like It’s a Mad, Mad, Mad, Mad World and Vanishing Point.

But for the most part, the list consists mostly of 1960’s and 1970’s horror and blaxploitation films. EW lists the movies, along with the posters, in one of those annoying one movie per page slideshows. I’ve compiled a list of the films Tarantino talks about after the jump, but you’ll have to click your way through the EW slideshow to read his thoughts on each film.

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Quentin Tarantino

Quentin Tarantino has recorded a list of his top 20 favorite films which have been released over the last 17 years. What’s so special about the last 17 years, or the year 1992? That was the year Tarantino became a filmmaker.

Films on Tarantino’s list include Battle Royale, Anything Else, Audition, Blade, Boogie Nights, Dazed & Confused, Dogville, Fight Club, Fridays, The Host, The Insider, Joint Security Area, Lost In Translation, The Matrix, Memories of Murder, Police Story 3, Shaun of the Dead, Speed, Team America, and Unbreakable. It think it’s interesting that Tarantino mentions that The Matrix sequels ruined the mythology, enough to push the first film off the top of his list. Watch the full list after the jump, complete with commentary from Tarantino himself .

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movieplaylistgoop

From time to time, we have a feature on /Film called “Movie Playlist” where we talk to the writers, directors, and stars about their favorite films. I’ve always found the celebrity playlists on iTunes to be interesting. Most everyone in the film business moved to Hollywood after discovering their love of films. And I’ve always love talking to people about their favorite films. So talking to the people who make the movies about their favorite films just seemed like a natural idea.

We’ve had some great artists tell us their favorites over the years, but we just don’t have the connections to get the likes of Steven Spielberg or Wes Anderson… but Gwyneth Paltrow does. Yes, I said Gwyneth Paltrow. On the actresses’ new website GOOP, she asked “five brilliant directors” to share their “top five DVD rental picks.”
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My Influences

Editor’s Note: You probably know Alex Proyas as the director of films like The Crow, Dark City, Garage Days, I Robot and Knowing, but for the next week and a half the filmmaker has agreed to become a guest blogger on /Film. I asked Alex to blog about some of his influences, and you can now read the resulting blog post below.

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I was too young to see The Exorcist in its first run at the theaters, but I remember reading the novel and being scared to death. Many years later when I was able to see the film, its impact was no less potent. I love thrillers with a spiritual aspect… simply because it centers around a danger out of human control. Sell the initial concept (brilliantly achieved by BLATTY), and you have the potential to create some of the most thrilling moments possible. Forget about the scary beats and cheap jumps which sustain most modern thrillers and horrors – I like a film that prolongs tension for so long that even a quick scene cut to a girl lying in bed with special effects makeup scares the hell out of you.

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Cool Posts From Around the Web:

For this NYE edition of the Movie Playlist, we chatted with Mr. Neil Hamburger, the Hollywood legend and stand-up comedian. It did not go so well.

Earlier this year when I caught Mr. Hamburger’s live show, America’s economic recession was clearly taking a toll. He grotesquely referred to an audience member as a “fucking pig person!” and proceeded to shoot off a clip of horrible Heath Ledger jokes that instigated a violent wave of “boo’s” and thrown Pabst bottles. Nevertheless, Mr. Hamburger has performed to a packed Madison Square Garden and appeared on Jimmy Kimmel Live! and Tim and Eric Awesome Show, Great Job! His new comedy album, …Sings Country Winners , is out now on Drag City.
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