Los Angeles Plays Itself (2003) - News Poster


David Lynch’s Festival of Disruption Unites ‘Peaks’ Cultists in Meditation Talk and Musical Mayhem

David Lynch’s Festival of Disruption Unites ‘Peaks’ Cultists in Meditation Talk and Musical Mayhem
“It’s a world out there that is horribly stressed,” said Bob Roth, the well-known transcendental meditation (Tm) teacher, providing some remarks at a two-day festival designed to raise money for David Lynch’s Tm-promoting charitable foundation. And then, as part of their effort to bring tranquility to the world, they showed “Twin Peaks: Fire Walk With Me,” verifiably the most stressful movie ever made.

This was not your grandfather’s Tm festival. Lynch’s second annual Festival of Disruption, held over two days at the Theatre at Ace Hotel in downtown Los Angeles, drew some in solidarity with the higher-consciousness cause, others were there just for the musical acts — which also included Bon Iver, TV on the Radio, Sharon Von Etten, and Laura Marling — and more had traveled from around the globe just to get their “Twin Peaks” fandom on with Lynch, who was greeted at least as warmly as a Buddha in a Sunday afternoon Q&A.

See full article at Variety - Film News »

Time is on my side by Anne-Katrin Titze

Michael Almereyda with Hampton Fancher on the form of Escapes, executive produced by Wes Anderson: "This is my tribute to Bruce Conner." Photo: Anne-Katrin Titze

In my Escapes conversation with Michael Almereyda (Experimenter, starring Peter Sarsgaard) and Hampton Fancher (co-screenwriter of Blade Runner and Blade Runner 2049) we start out with Federico García Lorca, Bruce Conner, Philip K Dick and Chris Marker. Then we encounter a Jean-Pierre Léaud, Tina Sinatra, Michael Pfleghar (Romeo Und Julia 70) connection and next stop over at Thom Andersen's Los Angeles Plays Itself, Brian Kelly and Flipper, Skinningrove on photographer Chris Killip, Yasujiro Ozu's influence on Wim Wenders (Yuharu Atsuta in Tokyo-Ga) and Jim Jarmusch.

Hampton Fancher: "It's looking at my life through other people's eyes."

Michael Almereyda's approach in Escapes turns the idea of a biopic inside out. Clips from Hampton Fancher's television and movie performances mixed with those
See full article at eyeforfilm.co.uk »

‘Blade Runner’ Scribe Reveals Life in Trailer for Michael Almereyda’s Wes Anderson-Produced ‘Escapes’

It’s exceedingly likely that your primary association with Hampton Fancher is Blade Runner, on which he served as co-writer and executive producer; and if you have another, it’s probably Blade Runner 2049, on which he also served as co-writer and the story’s architect. Little is it known that the scribe, actor, and director has had one of Hollywood’s strangest ascendancies, a trip marked by happenstance, romance, crossing paths with legends, and perhaps divine fate — a series of stories so good that Michael Almereyda (Marjorie Prime, Experimenter) turned them into a feature-length documentary whose intoxicating style is somewhere between the career-spanning De Palma and juxtaposition-heavy films of Thom Anderson (Los Angeles Plays Itself).

Escapes, executive produced by Wes Anderson, begins its theatrical run in just under two weeks, and we’re happy to exclusively debut the trailer courtesy of Grasshopper Film. Word has been strong since it premiered at BAMcinemaFest last month,
See full article at The Film Stage »

Los Angeles Film Festival Lures the Hometown Crowd

Los Angeles Film Festival Lures the Hometown Crowd
The Los Angeles Film Festival, taking place June 14-22, has always been an adaptive beast, changing over the years as it chases the moving target of exactly what it means to be a film festival in the capital of the film industry. This year, the biggest change is at the top, as Jennifer Cochis takes over for Stephanie Allain as director. Previously creative director and senior programmer at LAFF, Cochis has produced a number of L.A.-centric features (“Smashed,” “Los Wild Ones”). And she looks to continue and expand on much of the work of her predecessor, with the focus on spotlighting emerging directors and promoting a more inclusive view of the filmmaker community.

“I think our identity in terms of being a discovery festival isn’t something I’m going to alter. But I look forward to getting a little bit bigger,” she says.

Los Angeles Plays Itself
See full article at Variety - Film News »

Landscape Cinema Starter Kit

  • MUBI
I’ve been making 16mm durational urban landscape voiceover films, slowly but surely, since the late ‘90s. My short film Blue Diary premiered at the Berlinale in 1998. My two features, The Joy of Life (2005) and The Royal Road (2015) both premiered in the prestigious New Frontiers section at the Sundance Film Festival and have been as wildly successful as experimental films can be. Which is to say, they remain fairly obscure. My small but enthusiastic fan-base frequently asks me for recommendations of films that are similar to my own in terms of incorporating durational landscapes and voiceover and a meditative pace. While it is certainly one of the smallest subgenres in the realm of filmmaking, here are a handful of excellent landscape cinema examples by the practitioners I know best. I confess that my expertise here is limited and hope that the learned Mubi community will chime in with additions in the comments field below.
See full article at MUBI »

A Fine Pair And The Limits Of Claudia Love

This fall semester I started taking an Italian language class two evenings a week with my daughter, and Thursday night I was looking to decompress after our first big quiz. (Scores haven’t been revealed yet, but I think we did just fine.) So I started rummaging through my shelves and came across the Warner Archives DVD of Francesco Maselli’s A Fine Pair (1968), an ostensibly breezy romantic caper comedy which reteams Rock Hudson and Claudia Cardinale, a pairing their public was presumably clamoring for after their previous outing together in Blindfold (1965), a Universal programmer written and directed by Phillip Dunne, the screenwriter of, among many other notable movies, How Green Was My Valley. I’ve had a mad crush on Claudia ever since I first saw her in Circus World (1964) with John Wayne when I was but a youngster, and I always welcome the chance to visit movies of
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Pedro Almodóvar’s ‘Red’ Obsession, Marx Bros. Musical Returns, Watching ‘Blade Runner,’ and More

Dailies is a round-up of essential film writing, news bits, videos, and other highlights from across the Internet. If you’d like to submit a piece for consideration, get in touch with us in the comments below or on Twitter at @TheFilmStage.

Dan Sallitt has published his extensive companion on the films of Mikio Naruse.

A lost Marx Brothers musical has found its way back on stage, The New Yorker reports.

Watch a video on Pedro Almodóvar‘s obsession with the color red:

Los Angeles Plays Itself director Thom Andersen names his 10 favorite films of the last 10 years at Grasshopper Film.

Vox‘s Aja Romano on the strange story of how a machine was trained to “watch” Blade Runner:

Broad’s goal was to apply “deep learning” — a fundamental piece of artificial intelligence that uses algorithmic machine learning — to video; he wanted to discover what kinds of creations a
See full article at The Film Stage »

NYC Weekend Watch: Brian De Palma, Hong Sang-soo, Thom Andersen & More

Since any New York cinephile has a nearly suffocating wealth of theatrical options, we figured it’d be best to compile some of the more worthwhile repertory showings into one handy list. Displayed below are a few of the city’s most reliable theaters and links to screenings of their weekend offerings — films you’re not likely to see in a theater again anytime soon, and many of which are, also, on 35mm. If you have a chance to attend any of these, we’re of the mind that it’s time extremely well-spent.


A full-career Brian De Palma retrospective is now underway. Sisters and Carrie play on Friday, and Saturday brings The Phantom of the Paradise — but that’s not even half of the first weekend.

Prints of Gilda, Space Jam, and shorts by Charles and Ray Eames screen this Saturday.

Museum of the Moving Image

Discover the
See full article at The Film Stage »

NYC Weekend Watch: Kung Fu, Sidney Poitier, The Maysles, Chantal Akerman & More

Since any New York cinephile has a nearly suffocating wealth of theatrical options, we figured it’d be best to compile some of the more worthwhile repertory showings into one handy list. Displayed below are a few of the city’s most reliable theaters and links to screenings of their weekend offerings — films you’re not likely to see in a theater again anytime soon, and many of which are, also, on 35mm. If you have a chance to attend any of these, we’re of the mind that it’s time extremely well-spent.


The “Old School Kung Fu Fest” comes to the Lower East Side this weekend, offering the likes of Sammo Hung, Jackie Chan, Bruce Lee, and Tsui Hark, among others.

A print of My Neighbor Totoro screens on Saturday morning.

Frederick Wiseman‘s Hospital begins a week-long run.

A restoration of The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari screens this Monday.
See full article at The Film Stage »

Indirect Documentaries: Art of the Real 2016

  • MUBI
Engram of ReturningThe selection at this year’s installation of the Film Society of Lincoln Center’s Art of the Real film festival, an annual showcase dedicated to conveying the spectrum of nonfiction filmmaking, are an intriguing bunch culled from a variety of seemingly opposing cultures, yet still exhibiting a fascination with interrogating the past. That this fixation is explored through a miscellany of aesthetic methods is only testament to the veracity of the festival’s undertaking.As this year’s sidebar retrospective of avant-garde giant Bruce Baillie’s work evinces, the nuances and vagaries of the term ‘“nonfiction” allow for fruitful pairings of works that continue the lineage of the abstract, non-narrative work that comes to define our idea of the American avant-garde with those of more familiar documentary tendencies. Daïchi Saïto’s superlative Engram of Returning, playing as part of the second shorts program,is certainly the film
See full article at MUBI »

Joshua’s Top Ten Films Of 2015

  • CriterionCast
It’s that time of year. Sleigh bells have been rung, gifts have been given and we have officially closed the door on what was 2015. A year that saw us once again take a journey into a galaxy far, far away, revisit the post apocalyptic landscape of Mad Max and the ever expanding reach of world and documentary cinema, 2015 has been one of the greatest of film years, arguably the very best since 2007 (probably cinema’s greatest year?) and as one has likely already one hundred top [insert arbitrary number] films list, why not make it one hundred and one? Be it a group of young women attempting to break free of the backwards patriarchy that has them oppressed or a bravura, epic-length satire from one of world cinema’s foremost artists, these are the ten best films that 2015 had to offer.

Honorable mention: Have you heard about this new thing called television?
See full article at CriterionCast »

Top 50 modern movie documentaries

  • Den of Geek



50 fabulous documentary films, covering hard politics through to music, money and films that never were...

Thanks to streaming services such as Netflix, we’ve never had better access to documentaries. A whole new audience can discover that these real life stories are just as thrilling, entertaining, and incredible as the latest big-budget blockbuster. What’s more, they’re all true too. But with a new found glut of them comes the ever more impossible choice, what’s worth your time? Below is my pick of the 50 best modern feature length documentaries.

I’ve defined modern as being from 2000 onwards, which means some of the greatest documentaries ever made will not feature here. I’m looking at you Hoop Dreams.

50. McConkey (2013)

d. Rob Bruce, Scott Gaffney, Murray Wais, Steve Winter, David Zieff

Shane McConkey was an extreme skier and Base jumper who lived life on the edge, and very much to the full.
See full article at Den of Geek »

Joshua Reviews Laurie Anderson’s Heart Of A Dog [Theatrical Review]

  • CriterionCast
Documentary cinema is in a golden period. While many filmmakers get more and more esoteric with their subjects, others are getting more and more sensory in their aesthetic, and even more are getting more and more distinct in their voice. Films like Room 237 and the various documentaries from Terence Davies have helped usher in a new age of “essay” film, with pictures like Los Angeles Plays Itself proving that the genre of filmmaking once relegated to the special features of any home video release worth its stock can become something far greater.

And then there’s Laurie Anderson.

Best known as a musician, Anderson is also an accomplished visual artist, and has subsequently offered to film goers one of the greatest and most emotionally resonant essay pictures of this golden age.

Entitled Heart Of A Dog, Anderson takes a decidedly more personal route for this essay film, very much
See full article at CriterionCast »

Common Ground: Pedro Costa and Thom Andersen in Dialogue

  • MUBI
Thom Andersen and Pedro Costa on stage at the Courtisane Festival. Photo by Michiel Devijver.This year’s Courtisane Festival paired Pedro Costa and Thom Andersen as their artists in focus. Both filmmakers hung out with each other and the public for the full five days of this under-recognized gem of a festival in Ghent. What at first might seem very different directors with distinct backgrounds actually proved to be kindred spirits. In the end credits of his new cine-history, The Thoughts That Once We Had, Andersen thanks Costa, because “without [him] this motion picture would have been poorer.” Andersen has admired Costa’s work ever since he discovered In Vanda’s Room (2000) at the Montreal Festival du Nouveau Cinéma in 2001. He wrote about this experience and about Colossal Youth (2006) in Film Comment in 2007. Andersen has invited Costa to CalArts, where he teaches, more than once, and Cinema Scope published a
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In the Evening of the Day: Thom Andersen’s "The Thoughts That Once We Had"

  • MUBI
“Yet if you should forget me for a whileAnd afterwards remember, do not grieveFor if the darkness and corruption leaveA vestige of the thoughts that once we hadBetter by far you should forget and smileThan that you should remember and be sad.”—Christina Rossetti, Remember (1862)An opening title card from director Thom Andesen’s new feature film, The Thoughts That Once We Had, directly identifies the cinematic writings of philosopher Gilles Deleuze as the project's primary subject and inspiration. Deleuze’s two volumes on film, Cinema 1: The Movement-Image (1983) and Cinema 2: The Time-Image (1985), are today synonymous with a certain modernist school of thought that, while integrated in academia to such a degree as to be all but understood, remains quite radical. Unquestionably dense and provocatively pedantic, the French empiricist’s filmic texts integrate an array of theories and conceptualizations into a fairly delineated taxonomy, and are therefore fairly conducive
See full article at MUBI »

The Noteworthy: 8 April 2015

  • MUBI
Above: the 2015 Crossroads Film Festival kicks off on Friday, April 10th, and features Paul Clipson's Hypnosis Display with a live soundtrack by Grouper. Check out the rest of the amazing lineup here. Like everyone, we're devastated that David Lynch will not be directing the Twin Peaks revival season after all. Above: the latest issue of La Furia Umana is online now and includes an intriguing survey of "What's (Not) Cinema Becoming?"From the new issue of The Brooklyn Rail: pieces on Tsai Ming-liang's Rebels of the Neon God, J.P. Sniadecki's The Iron Ministry, and an interview with Xin Zhou.For Cinema Scope, Jordan Cronk writes on this year's True/False Film Festival. There are two incredible websites for you to browse from La Cinématheque Francaise: one on Pier Paolo Pasolini, and one on Michelangelo Antonioni. For his blog Following Film, Christoph Huber writes on "The Siodmak Variations":
See full article at MUBI »

The Noteworthy: 25 March 2015

  • MUBI
Edited by Adam CookAbove: Adam Nayman interviews Jauja director Lisandro Alonso for Reverse Shot. If like us you're excited to see James Wan's Furious 7, we recommend this piece by Orlando Whitfield from The White Review which surveys the franchise up to now. Filmmaker Robert Greene is not pleased with the HBO documentary series The Jinx: The Life and Deaths of Robert Durst. For AnOther, Mark Cousins has created a video tribute to Pier Paolo Pasolini. Above: Filmmaker Gina Telaroli has a new exhibition opening Friday March 27th (and runs until April 25th) at the 308 at 156 Project Artspace. It features an installation with her new film Silk Tatters and Johann Lurf's Twelve Tales Told, as well as video pieces that appropriate the work of Michael Mann, Tony Scott, John Carpenter. At Toronto Film Review, David Davidson takes a look at Cahiers du Cinéma's writing on Martin Scorsese during the eighties.
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Not a Deleuze Lecture, but What? Thom Andersen’s The Thoughts That Once We Had

I’ve heard many mistake the voiceover in Los Angeles Plays Itself as belonging to its writer-director Thom Andersen when it’s actually Encke King. A fair assumption — King speaks in a first person voiceover in a rather curmudgeonly monotone, fitting for the film’s occasionally cantankerous examination of the relationship between the physical spaces of Los Angeles and the way Hollywood films have portrayed them. The real Andersen is a more elusive character. His voice is more casual but less direct, his articulated knowledge of his own projects is tempered, bouncing around a given topic than directly addressing it. He pauses […]
See full article at Filmmaker Magazine »

A Guide to Location Scouting and Other L.A. Events

Awards season is over so it’s time to start thinking about your next project. If your next project is a Web series, indie film or short, think back to awards season. Why relive that belabored pantomime? Because some of last season’s most honored films, including Oscar winners such as “American Sniper” and “Whiplash,” were shot around L.A. Want to capture the same on-location magic? Check out the screening of “Los Angeles Plays Itself,” a documentary made up of clips from films shot on location in the Southland. A Q&A with filmmaker Thom Andersen follows the Feb. 27 event, which is being held at Union Station’s Fred Harvey Room. More details are available here. Other events for Los Angeles actors include: Open House: The Hatchery Press Workspace for WritersMarch 1 from 12-5 p.m.5611 Clinton St., Los AngelesCheck here for more details. A Movie Fanatics Screening of “Focus” Feb.
See full article at Backstage »
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